Dictionary defines hacking as the gaining of unauthorized access to data in a system or computer. Hackers are of three times; black hat hacker, white hat hacker and grey hackers. Black hat hackers are those who use their hacking abilities for personal gain or other malicious reasons. Grey hat hackers falls in a category where they might violate laws or ethics but doesn’t have the malicious intent that a black hat hacker has. Most local hackers and those who do freelance hacking falls under this category. White hat hackers are the heroes of this article. They are the ethical hackers who specializes in areas like penetration testing and in other testing methods to ensure the security of an organization or entity. Though more terms like red hat hackers and green hat hackers are being used now, these are the traditional main three categories.

Ethical hacking is described as one of the god careers one can pursue if you are interested in problem solving, communication and IT security. While this does not involve any of the underground hacking we usually watch in movies, ethical hacking is perfectly legal and even the government has ethical hackers working under various institutions. The ultimate goal of ethical hackers is generally to prevent data theft and fraud. As a career choice, ethical hacking is definitely something that has a lot of scope in terms of growth and stability. The IT industry has grown more than 5.9 percent since 2009 and it is estimated that there will be an approximate of 40 percent growth in using the IT services for security purposes.

The road to becoming an ethical hacker starts at the threshold of the IT field. Sharpening your IT skills and start working in the IT sector is extremely important before you actually become a hacker. Getting some additional security certification and experience is a big bonus. If you are working in the IT sector, try being in roles related to networks like a network engineer or an admin role. If you have all these qualifications, it is easy enough to find an information security position. Concentrating on penetration testing and experiencing the tools of trade can be considered as an added advantage. Next step is attaining the Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) certification offered by International Council of Electronic Commerce Consultants. Other than knowing about networks in detail, learning about Linux commands and programming languages like C and JAVA goes a long way in becoming an ethical hacker.

While the qualification discussed in the above paragraph cover the essentials, ethical hackers also need some soft skills. Work ethics are important in this field along with a talent for manipulation and lot of dedication.it should be also noted that engaging in illegal activities and/or involving in black hat hacking can kill your career in ethical hacking.

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