Hackers, Crackers, and Computer Criminals

David Dittrich, University of Washington

Kenneth Einar Himma, Seattle Pacific University


Definitions and Examples

Defining the Terms: Hacking and Cracking

Motivations and Examples

Tactics, Technologies, and Techniques


Internet Protocol Spoofing

Session Hijacking

Buffer Overflows

John the Ripper and Password-Cracking Techniques

Postintrusion Concealment Using Rootkits

Log Alteration

Use of Stepping Stones


Covert Channels

Viruses, Trojan Horses, and Worms

Social Engineering

Denial of Service

The Common Morality on Hacking and Cracking

The Case against Cracking

The Case against Hacking

Hacker Attempts to Justify Hacking

The Legality of Hacking

The United States


The European Union



Cross References



Early on, the threat posed by hackers, crackers, and computer criminals was comparatively minor. For starters, most people lacked sufficient access to the new information technologies to be affected in any significant way by computer crime. Equally important, most computer intruders lacked the skills and expertise to do significant damage to affected individuals.

Much has changed in the past 20 to 25 years. An ever-increasing number of people are coming to rely on e-mail, Web access, and other digital information technologies for social, personal, and commercial purposes, and those who lack direct access to these technologies frequently depend on commercial and ...

Get Handbook of Information Security: Information Warfare, Social, Legal, and International Issues and Security Foundations, Volume 2 now with O’Reilly online learning.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from 200+ publishers.