TUCoPS :: General Information :: stephack.txt

Steps to Become a Hacker

From harry_murphy_2002@yahoo.com Wed Aug 28 17:54:11 2002
From: "Harry Murphy" <harry_murphy_2002@yahoo.com>
Newsgroups: alt.2600.hackerz
Subject: Steps To Become A Hacker
Date: Thu, 29 Aug 2002 01:54:11 +0100
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Steps To Become A Hacker

First of all, I would discourage anyone who wants to become a hacker just
because he thinks it's cool.  You will not be very productive if this is
your only drive.  Another thing is not to be dumb and using pre-made
"kiddiot" scripts like winnuke, sub7, or msadc.  And don't do dumb things
like hacking just to deface websites or destroying other people's data.
That is utter lameness and you will get flamed for doing it, so don't do it!

This first section will layout a few things you must know in order to
actually hack something.  You cannot just read a simple tutorial on them and
think you know enough, that is why I would suggest buying books.  In order
to understand everything else I suggest learning about networking first.
Network+, a guide to networking, is a good book for beginners.  Strive not
to just read the book, but to understand it.  After you've read a general
networking book, go for something more specific like TCP/IP.  Reading a full
book dedicated to TCP/IP will improve your knowledge greatly.  TCP/IP is the
fundamental protocol on the net, and not understanding it means your hacking
skills will be a lump of dirt =)  To start out with networking and TCP/IP is
sufficient to equip you with a basic understanding of how and why different
kinds of attacks work.

After you have learned the basic networking skills, move on to security.  Of
course this is an important part, but many beginners stop as soon as they
get here (well most don't even get this far).  I recommend Maximum Security,
which is a very good book for beginners.  It covers everything you MUST

All this may seem very easy.  I mean it's only 3 books.  But you must read
and understand the concepts covered before progressing or you will not learn
much from the more advanced topics because you have not grasped the
fundamentals.  After these 3 books I would suggest you start reading up on
exploits and security holes.  Now this is where things start to veer off
from the linear path.  You absolutely must know some sort of programming. I
am not an expert programmer but I would suggest perl or C.  perl will allow
you to see holes in perl scripts on the net and will offer easy socket
programming techniques.  C is what most exploits are written in and what
makes up the building block of what you need to know for the next topic.

Unix.  This word might strike fear into the minds of some, but knowledge in
it is absolutely essential.  The best way to learn it is to install a
unix-like operating system on your computer.  Mandrake and Red Hat are the 2
most common distros for beginners and I would say that it is for good
reasons, they are nice introductions into the vast world of *nix (*nix just
means all Unix-like operating systems).  If you need to go get a book on
unix, I'd suggest Unix in a Nutshell or Linux Unleased.  Once you get to
this point you should know what to do next, just from being around the
community for awhile.  After this the road becomes a lot more complex and
goes off in all different directions.

The last basic step is to keep on top of the latest exploits and gain
knowledge of old common exploits.  With windows it is fairly simple, but
with *nix it it more spread out between all the different distros and their
services.  Here are some of the best sites to get exploits and security
advisories: http://packetstorm.securify.com , www.securityfocus.com ,
www.hack.co.za , and www.securitytracker.com

The peices of the puzzle come together slowly, and they take a lot of work
to put together.  But if you commit yourself and persevere, you will find
that this method will help you to become more knowledgable and do things
with computers you never thought was possible.  If you skip a step or two
you will be in trouble, and you will find that you do have some skills but
can't do much with them =)

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