Hacking Can Be Justified
Nintendo has been hacked and Sony has been hacked twice. These hackers have often claimed that they are ‘white hat’ hackers that are helping by showing where the flaws in computer systems are. By doing this the problems can be fixed so preventing any damaging ‘black hat’ attacks. However these recent hackings that have taken place have taken information but have been claiming to be white hat attacks pointing out the flaws in sony and nintendo’s security. However with the possibility of cyber warfare and concerns over hacks that result in huge amounts of information being stolen getting more widespread white hat hackers are becoming more necessary to ensure security. Can such attacks be justified?
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Hacks to demonstrate holes in security.
'A LulSec press release said: "SonyPictures.com was owned by a very simple SQL injection, one of the most primitive and common vulnerabilities, as we should all know by now.
"From a single injection, we accessed EVERYTHING. Why do you put such faith in a company that allows itself to become open to these simple attacks?" '
Sony, as a major technology company that handles the data of millions of customers worldwide, should be able to defend itself against simple and widely known hacks. To highlight this vulnerability to both Sony, who genuinely may not realise their web security has holes, and the customers, who may wish to reconsider entrusting Sony with their personal details.
Hackers demonstrate these kind of vulnerabilities in the security of large corporations and even Governments (see Gary McKinnon and his relatively simple hacking of the US Defence records - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gary_McKinnon) in the most direct and visible way.
'Here is the problem I have. My Robin Hood didn’t burn Sherwood Forrest to help the poor. He also did not use the poor as pawns in his fight with the rich.' - http://www.corrections.com/news/article/28572-hackers-crackers-tramps-and-thieves
Ordinary users caught up in hacker stunts often can't complain and are inconvenienced or even put in danger - often to the detriment of the cause that the hackers are trying to make a statement about - users aren't likely to want to try and mod a PS3 game if they can't use a PS3 without their credit card details being stolen.
<<Holes in their security wouldn't matter if no one was allowed to hack. Also, if the company wants to plug in the holes then they would hire someone to do it for them. It is their responsibility to take care of their own. Outside hackers are breaking into others systems which is outside their right. If you lock your door and some stranger broke in to prove that it was possible, they still performed breaking and entering which is against the law. So to do it to prove it can be done is the worst excuse i've ever heard.
Hacks to improve a product.
Doing something for the good of someone else against their will is rarely justified. Nintendo and Ape Laboratories between them have produced enough successful games to know how to sell games, but we impatiently pressurise them to make a decision that they are waiting for the opportune moment to do so.
<< If Pepsi made 5 cans of a new special Soda called Pepsi Awesome, and you tried it and loved it, but then created some yourself to give to other people and encouraged that they can (if they wanted to) purchase a regular can of pepsi out of appreciation you are still in violation copyright infringement for basically recreating the same product (or modifying the same product) and giving it away for free. You can encourage them all you want, how many do you think will actually buy the real game, which would be useless to them. It wouldn't happen and what The Mother 3 Translation Project is doing is against the law.
Hacks as artistic expression.
<< The art of stealing? Im not sure i buy that. Youre saying its artistic to hack a game for content they created? But nonetheless, hacking yourself is not quite what this argument is about :P
Hacks as political statements.
' was engaged in illegal activity, including but not limited to: being contracted by the United States Chamber of Commerce to spy on & discredit unions and progressive groups, being contracted by the Bank of America to launch a campaign of misinformation against Wikileaks and it's supporters (going so far as to blackmail journalists), developing a new type of Windows rootkit to spy upon individuals, and developing astroturfing software that could make an army of fake social media profiles to manipulate and sway public opinion on controversial issues.'
Hackers often reveal Government activity to the public that is of a concern to them and that could not be revealed any other way. Hacker culture itself is a political statement about freedom of speech and freedom of information. The existence of the Pirate Party UK (http://www.pirateparty.org.uk/) is proof that such issues can't be ignored.
'Pirate Party is the political party of the digital age. We represent the changes demanded by technology that governments and industries are resisting with all their might. We want copyright and patent laws to be reformed to fit their purpose, and your privacy and freedom of speech to be upheld and protected.'
Having scanned the hacking web site and blogs they are hypocritical, it would appear that the moment anybody speaks out against them their website or network is taken down. These kind of actions are creating a culture afraid to speak its own mind for fear of reprisals.
So who determines what can and can't be said?
The hackers, that make them no better than the people they are attacking.
In the recent PSN attacks it is costing Sony millions, how much more will it cost them, and how long before that then transpires into loss of employment for potentially thousands of employees that are just trying to earn a living. It appears that hackers do not always consider the "bigger picture" when they exercise their right to steal peoples information and then display it on the network for all to see.
Surely a more effective way would have been to demonstrate to Sony that they had been hacked privately to allow them to improve their security, and then published on the net that Sony had been breached and have been advise of their weakness in security. This would have achieved the same end result, everyone would know and peoples personal information would not be up for grabs. How many fraudulent actions can be made from the information released that will end up costing the user.
5. Hacks to uncover or expose criminal activity, corruption or corporate malpractice
Hacks always negatively affect someone.
<could, but the pros do not outweigh the cons :P
Stealing and invading privacy is fundamentally wrong.
<<and your argument still doesn't outweight the cons :P
What hacking is doing to the fundamental structure of the Internet...
'We care not whether the actions we have taken in this struggle have complied with laws of the United States or any other country. What your lot fail to understand is that we live in cyberspace. The only laws that apply are the laws set forth by our individual consciences. We break your nations' laws when we recognize those laws to stand between the people and their freedom.
Anonymous is not simply „a group of super hackers". Anonymous is the embodiment of freedom on the web. We exist as a result of the Internet, and humanity itself. This frightens you. It only seems natural that it would. Governments, corporations, and militaries know how to control individuals. It frustrates you that you do not control us. We have moved to a world where our freedom is in our own hands. We owe you nothing for it. We stand for freedom for every person around the world. You stand in our way.
We hope you come to see that your attempts to censor and control our existence are futile. But if this is not the case, if you continue to object to our freedoms -- we shall not relent.
We do not fear your tyranny. You cannot win a battle against an entity you do not understand. You can take down our networks, arrest every single one of us that you can backtrace, read every bit of data ever shared from computer to computer for the rest of this age, and you will still lose.' - http://www.reddit.com/tb/hto2s
Such a world would not be one in which any human would want to live. It would be totally anarchistic, dependent on the whims of the strong who have the resources, charisma and knowledge to control the flow of the Internet, where those who are less influential are used as pawns or discarded entirely. There are no laws or hierarchy to constrain anybody - but also nothing to stop them preying on the weak.
This is certainly not a good model for humanity outside the Internet, as Anonymous seem to want it to be.
Law is by no means a good faction in SMT. This doesn't mean that Chaos is a good faction.
What do you think?