Difference Between Black Hat, White Hat & Gray Hat Hackers: The word Hacker doesn’t intend to be a bad person in the computer world, much less a virtual “criminal” or “bandit”. Tech writers often point to Hackers breaking them into three categories: Black Hat, White Hat and finally Gray Hat. These terms represent different groups of hackers based on their role towards the connected world.
Difference Between Black Hat, White Hat & Gray Hat Hackers
The definition of the word “Hacker” has always been and still is very questionable, and can mean someone who compromises computer security or even a developer practicing in free software or open source culture movements.
Black Hats (Black Hat)
Black-hat hackers, or simply “black hats,” are the kind of hacker where the modern media seems to focus. Black-hat hackers break the security of computers and systems only for personal and unique gain (such as stealing credit card numbers, bank details, or even collecting personal user data). They can also act out of pure evil, such as creating and using a botnet to perform DDoS attacks against sites that they themselves do not love.
Black Hats fit the generalized fashion where all hackers are criminals and who involve in illegal activities for own gain. Briefly, they are the computer criminals.
To differentiate, a black hat hacker faces a new security vulnerability in a system, simply to sell it to some criminal organizations on the black market, or even use this data to compromise other people, systems, software or sites later.
White hat hackers are the opposite of black hat hackers. They are the “ethical hackers,” masters at settling computer security systems and using their skills for merit. They utilize their skills for legitimate purposes, different from criminals Crackers or Black Hats.
For example, many white hat hackers or White Hats are requested or often contracted to test security systems in organizations.
The organization authorizes the white hat hacker to attempt to compromise their websites, software or systems. The white hat hacker uses his intelligence to penetrate and compromise these systems “that are made available” by the organization, in the same way, that a Black Hat would do, but of course, without the agreement of the company in question.
However, instead of using their access to steal or vandalize the organization the white hat hacker reaches to the organization that requested their services and informs them in detail how they had internal access. Thus allowing the organization to develop its defenses against invaders in the future.
This is often referred to as “penetration testing”.
A white hat hacker who discovers a security vulnerability quickly discloses it only to its developers and maintainers, allowing them to fix their flawed product and enhance security before it is exploited and compromised by Black Hat Hackers or Gray Hat.
Gray Hats (Gray Hat)
A gray hat hacker fits somewhere between a black hat hacker and a white hat Hacker. A gray hat or gray hat doesn’t work for its own personal gain or to cause a worldwide destruction, but hackers of this category can technically perform certain virtual crimes and perform some extremely wrong deeds.
For example, a black hat hacker will compromise a computer system without authorization, stealing data for his own individual profit.
A white hat hacker first requests permissions from the corporation or company before testing the security of websites, software, or systems.
The Gray Hat Hacker does not use its bad access for malicious purposes, but if it accesses a security system, it is already compromised, a fact that makes the action of the Gray Hat Hacker totally illegal.
If a gray hat hacker finds a security flaw in a software or site, the Gray Hat Hacker may expose this flaw publicly to the hacked system company, rather than disclose in particular to those responsible for what White Hat would do.
This way they would not take advantage of the security breach for their own benefit.
Now you know the difference between Black Hat, White Hat, and Gray Hat Hackers. Hope you like the article, share it as much as possible!