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Hackers and crackers and prying eyes.

Hackers and crackers.

Historically hackers were people who loved nothing more than getting inside someone else’s computer system, just because they could. As the sophistication and use of computers increased, so did the challenges facing the hackers. At some point the idea of just getting in changed, and as large businesses became increasing dependent on their computer systems, the Law took an increasing dim view of hacking.

The theoretical distinction between hackers and crackers, is that hackers do it for the challenge, whilst crackers will invariably try to damage or control systems for their own gain or simply to vandalize. If there is someone in their bank’s database, most people won’t stop and wonder what the intent is, they will just want them out.

Prying eyes.

Something people tend to forget in all the ‘Mission Impossible’ gadgetry, is that someone may just be simply watching using no more than their eyes. If someone were to use a work, library, Internet cafe, etc computer, any passwords or usernames could be seen. OK, we could get excessively paranoid at this point, but how many of us try and shield the keyboard when we input our pin number into the cash machine? Same thing really.

Particularly at work, if we use the Internet, the passwords can be cached by the computer, and retrieved with the use of a simple program. The advice really has to be, think before you click that dialogue box that helpfully offers to remember your passwords for you.

Paul Wood

Website design and maintenance

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