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Hackers: is it so bad?

By Vladimir Golubev
Date: November 08, 2003

computer crime Is it right to name the people attacking computer systems the "hackers"? A lot of representatives of a computer underground believe that according to a history, the term "hacker" define the person up-grading the functionalities of computers. Hence, hackers are the "good" people working with a noble purpose: they train a computer in new operations. Using the term "hacker" concerning computer vandals deforms not only sense of the term, but the historical concept of "hacking" as well.

People which use the term "hacker" from the positive point of view, define those attacking computer systems as "cracker". So, on a professional slang the hackers are "good", but crackers are "bad". However, as mass media call both of them the "hackers", the term "crackers" is used very seldom.

So, it is worthwhile to call everyone attacking computers the "attacker". "Attacker" can be the hacker, the ''cracker", and even call himself the "researcher of security system", the "verifier of computer system on penetration from the outside": irrespective of a level of skills and motives. However, the common feature of all of them is attack to computer systems.

This problem has very important legal aspect. From the legal point of view only the court can define "hackers", "crackers", "phreakers", "carders" as criminals. If the law is broken and the court proves guilt, be responsible for crime, no matter how you are called.

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