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Gaana.com Hacking Proves How Desperately We Need Ethical Hackers

In this information age, security often becomes the first causality, as was proved by the hacking of Gaana.com.

Updated
Tech News
2 min read
(Photo Courtesy: YouTube)

Better me than some outsider. Some religious nut job bent on Armageddon. Nobody wants to see that happen. Everything I’ve broken can be fixed if the country is willing to pay for it.

This is what ethical hacker Thomas Gabriel (played by Timothy Olyphant) said in the movie Die Hard 4.0 after he launched a cyber attack on America’s computer infrastructure.

And while Thomas Gabriel didn’t turn out to be the good guy in the film, the Pakistani hacker, who introduced himself as “Mak Man” did. He hacked the website of music streaming web service Gaana.com and acquired the details of over 10 million users, but thankfully didn’t have any malicious intent to release the details.

Later, Satyan Gajwani, the CEO of Times Internet, which runs Gaana.com, offered a business deal to the hacker for fixing loopholes in the IT system of company.

What is Ethical Hacking?

Ethical hacking or ethical hackers, as the the name suggests, are hacks performed by a team or an individual to use their programming skills to determine vulnerabilities in a computer system.

An ethical hacker attempts to bypass the system security of a company with an online presence and search for any weak points that could be exploited by malicious hackers. This information is then used by the organisation to improve the system security, in an effort to minimize or eliminate any potential attacks.

Government Websites Hacked

In 2013, a total of 78 government websites were hacked and 16,035 incidents related to spam, malware infection and system break-in were reported. The number of cyber crime incidents stood at 13,301 in 2011 and 22,060 in 2012.

As per the Assocham-Mahindra SSG 2014 report, in 2014 the incidents more than doubled to 1,49,254 cyber crime cases. Rising at this alarming rate, the number of cyber crimes in India might double to three lakh in 2015 and could pose serious economic and national security challenges, the report warned.

Some Famous Indian Ethical Hackers

Ankit Fadia: He is one of the most prominent ethical hackers of India. Presently based out of Silicon Valley in California, Fadia has written over 10 books in the field of computer hacking, such as Intrusion Alert : An Ethical Hacking Guide to Intrusion Detection.

Sunny Vaghela: At the age of 18, he found loopholes in SMS and call forging in mobile networks. He has helped the Mumbai and Ahmedabad police branches with solving terrorist threats and also helped in preventing attacks in Ahmadabad.

A great pioneer in the field of information security and cyber crime consultant, Vaghela has assisted in solving complex cyber crime cases and has also played instrumental role in creating awareness about information security and cyber crime for several organisations and even for government agencies. He is the CEO of TechDefence, based in Jaipur and Ahmedabad.

Vivek Ramachandran: A world renowned security researcher and evangelist, whose expertise lies with computer and network security, wireless security, computer forensics, embedded systems security and e-governance.

Ramachandran has won many awards and two awards are from Microsoft and Cisco for various contributions he made in security modules that are used in many enterprises.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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