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August 14, 2014

Majority of Hackers Do it for the Thrill, Believe They Won’t Be Caught: Survey

From the Thycotic Black Hat 2014 Survey.

The vast majority of hackers are thrill seekers who believe they will never be held accountable for their actions, a new report has revealed.

A survey published by password protection software firm Thycotic found that 86 percent of hackers believe they will never be caught. Without fear of accountability, there’s no motivation for hackers to stop, Thycotic notes.

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“Why are hackers so sure they won’t get caught? One theory is that the rate in which attacks are performed vastly outweigh how closely systems are monitored,” the report reads. “Modern day hackers are more agile than ever, sporting a collective knowledge base of systems and programming languages at their disposal. This allows for bursts of attacks on multiple systems simultaneously, increasing success rates without adding much risk.”

Perhaps the most disturbing finding of the study is the fact that the majority of hackers do what they do for fun rather than to expose injustice.

Fewer than 30 percent of those interviewed said their hacking activities were to expose social injustice while 51 percent said they hack for the thrill of it — because they are “curious, bored, or want to test out their abilities.”

Only 18 percent of hackers cited financial gain as a motivation.

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When it comes to targets, 40 percent of respondents said they would likely target contractors to gain login credentials while 30 percent would target IT administrators. Only six percent would choose to target executives for sensitive login credentials.

Nearly all respondents (99 percent) said “tried and true” methods such as phishing and spoofing are still the most reliable ways of infiltrating a system.

Ironically, hackers live in fear their personal information is at risk.

“A shocking 88 percent of respondents believe their own personally identifiable information is at risk for attack,” reads the report. “If modern-day hackers are convinced they are at risk, what does this mean for the enterprise? Even the most talented of hackers are still susceptible to attacks, meaning data protection is more important now than it ever was.”


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Jennifer Cowan is the Managing Editor for SiteProNews.

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