Introduction to Hacking
Computer hacking can also lead to other constructive technological developments, since many of the skills developed from hacking apply to more mainstream pursuits. For example, former hackers Dennis Ritchie and Ken Thompson went on to create the UNIX operating system in the 1970s. This system had a huge impact on the development of Linux, a free UNIX-like operating system. Shawn Fanning, the creator of Napster, is another hacker well known for his accomplishments outside of computer hacking.
In comparison to those who develop an interest in computer hacking out of simple intellectual curiosity, some hackers have less noble motives. Hackers who are out to steal personal information, change a corporation’s financial data, break security codes to gain unauthorized network access, or conduct other destructive activities are sometimes called “crackers.” This type of computer hacking can earn you a trip to a federal prison for up to 20 years.
If you are interested in protecting your home computer against malicious hackers, investing in a good firewall is highly recommended. It’s also a good idea to check your software programs for updates on a regular basis. For example, Microsoft offers a number of free security patches for its Internet Explorer browser.