A great deal of news, discussion and time is spent dealing with cyber security. For a quarter of a century, since the time the internet first became available for commercial use, there have been security issues and computers and accounts have been hacked and their content compromised. I can remember discussions immediately after 9/11 about the concept that the next great terrorist destruction in the US would be by hacking of infrastructure rather than physically the way the twin towers came down.
Today with the total interconnected nature of almost everything this risk is greater. It is interesting that while we are all looking for ways to protect our own portions of the computer and network infrastructure there is a huge market for hackers. We know that much damage is done by amateurs who hack for the fun of seeing what they can accomplish. There are petty criminals as well who penetrate networks and embed ransomware to extort money. Much has been made of hackers employed by foreign governments who penetrate or attempt to penetrate the US infrastructure.
It is interesting to note that you can simply go online and find ads for hackers for hire and locate someone with expertise to help you break into almost anything. This may simply be hacking a friend or ex-friend’s Facebook page or hacking a company firewall. A quick search on Google will help you find hundreds of hack-for-hire businesses from which to choose. There is even a site that provides hack-for-hire reviews and will tell you which of the hack-for-hire suppliers are best and why. They rate them for things such as cost, success rate and how effective they are at providing the services they advertise. Similar to consumer reports, they have their own rating and ratings provided by users who send in their experiences with the firms. Of course there are legitimate reasons to hire one. Banks or other firms often hire outside hackers to attempt penetration of their own firewalls to see what vulnerabilities are there and help them improve their own secure infrastructure.
It turns out that several of the hacker-for-hire firms are scams themselves. You are asked to pay a down payment upfront and then somehow you aren’t able to get any response from them again. As in the case of almost anything on the internet, hackers-for-hire can be located almost anywhere in the world. Finding them, prosecuting them, or collecting from them is nearly impossible. So buyer beware. Hire a hacker if you must, but do your due diligence first and pick one who is legitimate, ethical, and competent to perform the services you need. And don’t plan on getting rich by hiring someone to rob a bank for you.