Hacking now for profit motivation?

By Derek Sooman on December 21, 2005, 6:04 AM
Writing the preceding article got me thinking about how Hacking is changing. It used to be that people tried to penetrate networks or websites purely as an intellectual exercise, or they had a vendetta against a particular company or organisation because of political reasons. But now, we are seeing a definite shift towards Hacking for criminal gain. Vincent Weafer, Los Angeles-based senior director of development for Symantec Security Response, believes that crime for profit motivation has really found the Internet. No longer are we at the mercy of some geek who wants to infect your machine with a virus for the sheer hell of it - now we are most definitely facing organised crime.

Today, says Weafer, full-blown thieves lurk in cyberspace armed with tools capable of sucking confidential information out of unprotected computers. They can also turn them into zombies and rent them to organized crime for a few hundred dollars as part of a so-called "bot nets" used to flood the web with dubious spam.




User Comments: 13

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vnf4ultra said:
I guess it makes sense, why not try to make money if the person has already gone to the trouble to hack in. Not that it's right, but I can see why they'd do it. Next thing you know, companies will hire hackers to steal your money rather than investing in annoying popups and spams, if things keep up.
cyrax said:
i believe youre right vnf4ultra. As scary as it may seem the possibility of spammers attempting to leech stuff like cc numbers and serials looking like its poised to become reality.i hope the firewall companies are up to the challenge
nimo333 said:
I knew that some hackers do it for profit motivation as some hackers work for companies you know and some are not. You wouldn't need to be a genius to figure this out.
vigilante said:
What's the world coming to?In an age where every company wants you to store your data online so it is "accessible from anywhere"; at the same time any smart hacker, or even multiple ones, could get in there and take your data, if they so choose.As for me, I'll keep my programs and data right in front of me. Thank you. Until security is fixed.
nathanskywalker said:
What is the surprise in all of this? You're a hacker, you're doing illegal things that could easily get you landed, why not? Really it is just one more logical step on the other side of the law, really, it only makes sense.
mentaljedi said:
[b]Originally posted by vigilante:[/b][quote]What's the world coming to?In an age where every company wants you to store your data online so it is "accessible from anywhere"; at the same time any smart hacker, or even multiple ones, could get in there and take your data, if they so choose.As for me, I'll keep my programs and data right in front of me. Thank you. Until security is fixed.[/quote]I guess you'll be waiting for a long time then. lol
PanicX said:
The same issue applies to virus writing now to. Previously viruses were more of a detached hobby of programmers with too much time on their hands. Now programmers are being hired to write viruses to help create bot nets for spammers and extract personal information for ID theft.
Bartzy said:
Viruses are not just a "hobby". Hacking for fun doesn't do any damage, while viruses do.I think internet crime was and will be here since the internet became a trading place. organized crime is more complicated and maybe it is like this Symantec guy said. If there are many groups of internet criminals, it is a great cause of concern. The day when we'll be worried of internet terrorists is not far. I'll not be suprised if we will hear something like that in the news soon (I hope not).
harib said:
[b]Originally posted by Bartzy:[/b][quote]Viruses are not just a "hobby". Hacking for fun doesn't do any damage, while viruses do.If you are hacking for fun I agree with you there will be no damage in your side since you knew itís only for fun but it will cost the hacked person/ company money and time to modified the system they have got to insure it wonít be hacked anymore
DragonMaster said:
[quote]Symantec Security Response, believes that crime for profit motivation has really found the Internet.[/quote][quote]Next thing you know, companies will hire hackers to steal your money rather than investing in annoying popups and spams, if things keep up.[/quote]Where Symantec got that information? Are they asking people to hack, make viruses or send spam to sell more anti-virus software?
Subservient said:
I believe that this has always been going on just recently it has grown. For all we know, major companies could have been doing this the whole time and now theres a crime ring surrounding it. And no matter how much we improve our security programs the hackers will always find new ways around this. You just have to sit and hope that they don't attack you.
Mictlantecuhtli said:
[b]Originally posted by DragonMaster:[/b][quote]Where Symantec got that information? Are they asking people to hack, make viruses or send spam to sell more anti-virus software?[/quote]Why wouldn't a company in antivirus business say things like this to people who hardly know the difference between Internet and the blue "E" icon?
PanicX said:
[b]Originally posted by Bartzy:[/b][quote]Viruses are not just a "hobby". Hacking for fun doesn't do any damage, while viruses do.[/quote]Then I suppose its a job, or perhaps a religious calling? To say its not a hobby because it can damage something doesn't make sense. There's also many viruses that do no real damage, hence the [url=http://www.symantec.com/avcenter/threat.severity.html#c
tegory]virus ratings scales[/url] implemented by many anti-virus firms.
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