The History of Hacking

hackerWas reading this today and thought it was a well written piece on the history of hacking, how it started and what its become today. While hacking is not what I remember it to be when I first started on with computing, in that hacking was merely related in terms of hacking the Windows registry in order to tweak the system a bit etc.

These days its more known for the intrusion into another’s computer system, and we are seeing a lot of this sort of hacking these days with the Sony, Nintendo and now the Citi Bank hacking intrusions.

“In the early decades of the 21st century the word “hacker” has become synonymous with people who lurk in darkened rooms, anonymously terrorising the internet.

But it was not always that way. The original hackers were benign creatures. Students, in fact.

To anyone attending the Massachusetts Institute of Technology during the 1950s and 60s, a hack was simply an elegant or inspired solution to any given problem.

Many of the early MIT hacks tended to be practical jokes. One of the most extravagant saw a replica of a campus police car put on top of the Institute’s Great Dome.

Over time, the word became associated with the burgeoning computer programming scene, at MIT and beyond. For these early pioneers, a hack was a feat of programming prowess.”

Read the full article HERE at BBC Technology News

Sony still not out of the security woods yet!

Sony-Hack-115x115Its not going great for Sony of late with the hacking of user personal data a few weeks back. Now the site that they setup to allow users to change their passwords easily is part of a new security issue, in which an exploit was found that could allow a hacker to impersonate the user.

“A website set up by Sony to allow users to reset their passwords following last month’s hack attack is itself subject to a security alert.

A Sony user discovered an exploit on the site that could have been used by hackers to impersonate users.

Password resets have been necessary following the exposure of 77 million Sony PlayStation users’ personal details.

Sony admitted the sites were insecure but said no hack had occurred.”

Read the full article HERE at BBC Technology News

Anonymous vs Sony

hackerI maybe completely wrong but I have some suspicions on this latest spat between Sony and the hacker collective “anonymous” in that its a bit co-incidental that anonymous have gained the blame, is this an easy scapegoat do to their past history?

“Online vigilante group Anonymous has denied being behind an attack that led to the theft of personal data from around 77 million PlayStation users.

The secretive “hacker collective” had earlier been singled-out by Sony as the possible guilty party.

But a posting on Anonymous’ blog said: “Let’s be clear, we are legion, but it wasn’t us. You are incompetent Sony.”

The electronics giant has offered compensation to users who suffer fraud as a result of the theft.

Earlier this week, Sony sent a letter to the US Congress accusing Anonymous of being involved in the attack.”

I have seen in the past 6 months companies loosing what is supposed to be secure data left right and center, Epsilon is one notable one that I have had emails from companies that use this marketing company that my email address was potentially taken in a hack on their servers, this should really not happen if measures are in place and up to date. Yes you will never stop the concerted hacker from penetrating your servers in time, but we just seem to be of late seeing companies leaking data too much and I’m happy to see the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) investigating HERE if Sony have broken what is quite tough data protection laws we have in the UK.

Full article at BBC Technology News HERE

Hackers take on Secure ID Tokens

hackerI would say not the best security in the world to let this information out in to the wild and for hackers to actually get to the data, while RSA state that its not as bad as portrayed, I can imagine its not good either.

“Hackers have stolen data about the security tokens used by millions of people to protect access to bank accounts and corporate networks.

RSA Security told customers about the “extremely sophisticated cyber attack” in an open letter posted online.

The company is providing “immediate remediation” advice to customers to limit the impact of the theft

It also recommended customers take steps, such as hardening password policies, to help protect themselves.”

Read full Article HERE at BBC Technology News