What is The Definition of a Good Hacker and a Bad Hacker?

What is The Definition of a Good Hacker and a Bad Hacker?

Probably, after every other day, we hear of news about hackers stealing confidential information from heavily-secured websites or bringing down the entire website. We, often see in movies hackers infiltrating into a website, doing illegal activities and getting away with them in a blink of an eye. All of this has led us to believe that hackers are analogous to an evil person. But are all hackers bad? Do all hackers perform their activities with ill intentions? You will get to know the answers to these questions in this post.

Who is a Bad Hacker?

If we cut it short, then bad hackers are the ones who perform hacking activities with ill intentions. If a person is trying to steal confidential information from a government website then he/ she is a bad hacker. Confused? You must be thinking that all hackers perform activities like this only, then where actually the difference lies? Don’t worry! We are coming to that.

Bad hackers are also known as ‘Black Hats’ as whatever they do is illegal and a crime. Almost, all of their activities are criminal offenses and thus the term is associated with them.

Who is a Good Hacker?

Well! Here we will clear out the confusion for you. A good hacker is the one who performs hacking activities with good intentions like for identifying the vulnerabilities and loopholes in a website so that they can be fixed by the developers.

They are also known as Ethical Hackers and usually have a certification of an EC-Council accredited Ethical Hacking Course under their belt. The term ‘White Hats’ is used for them in the internet society. Ethical hackers are often employed full-time with an organization and their main role is to hack into the company’s website and point out security fixes that need to be done. This way an organization is better protected from ‘Black Hats’ or bad hackers.


The tests performed by ethical hackers are usually called ‘Penetration Tests’ and are done under the supervision of somebody senior within the organization. Since the hack is performed with a good mindset, with permission and with an aim of fixing all the security loopholes it is not a criminal offense or neither is illegal. In fact, the demand for certified ethical hackers is so huge that their net take-home salary is often 40 – 50% more than their IT counterparts. Remember, I said ‘Certified’ ethical hackers. Those who learn to hack on their own, pretty much won’t be hired by organizations, even if they have the required skills due to lack of proper certification.

Since, every day new viruses, Trojans, worms and other malware are being released, how do companies or organizations secure themselves from such cyber-attacks? The answer is ethical hackers. There is a popular saying that for dealing with metal you need metal. The same concept can be applied here. For dealing with hackers; you need to hire a hacker. There is absolutely no other way to deal with nefarious web-based attacks.

 Yes! One more thing you must know. If you are planning to undertake an Ethical Hacking Course you must know that you need to recertify also after a period of time so as to always be in sync with the current developments in cyber-crimes.

Ethical Hackers are trained to think like bad hackers but perform the same tasks with a correct mindset. Moreover, White Hat or ethical hackers are fully trained in almost every tool which the bad hackers or the so-called ‘Black Hats’ may use for their nefarious activities.

Who are ‘Grey Hat’ Hackers?

Cool! Now you know about the difference between good hackers and bad hackers. You are also clear with the term ‘White Hats’ and ‘Black Hats.’ Next, let me tell you about a middle term known as ‘Grey Hats.’

‘Grey Hats’ is the terminology used for the hackers which, kind of, fall in between ‘White Hats’ and ‘Black Hats.’ These hackers don’t have malicious intentions behind their hacking activities. Similar to ‘White Hats’ they have a mission to improve web security. But the difference lies in the fact that ‘White Hats’ don’t commit any kind of crime in ensuring web security but ‘Grey Hats’ are ready to commit criminal offenses for the sake of providing security.

You can take ‘Grey Hats’ as the hackers who don’t have permission like ‘White Hats’ to access a system or a website but still, they do it from their own end and point out the security concerns and vulnerabilities to the website or system owner.

Thin Line of Difference between an Ethical Hacker & a Non-Ethical Hacker


Yes! There is a very bleak difference between an ethical hacker and a non-ethical hacker or between ‘White Hats’ & ‘Black Hats.’

A ‘White Hat’ hacker is usually given all the permissions to hack into a system and check for vulnerabilities. Even though the percentage of such happenings is pretty less, a ‘White Hat’ hacker can leave behind viruses, trap doors, and even back doors to gain access to your system without your permission. Even under supervision, a hacker is skillful enough to leave behind the malicious content.

That’s why it is recommended to a company to hire certified ethical hackers from a trusted organization. On the other hand, if you are getting certified as an ethical hacker you mustn’t even refrain from your duties and should always understand your responsibility and mission which is to make the web a safe place.


So, we have reached the end of this post. Well! I am quite thrilled about ‘Ethical Hacking.’ Since about everything is over the internet in the present and more things are destined to come under the hood of the internet in the future, cyber-crimes are bound to rise and so is the requirement of ethical hackers.

Being a ‘White Hat’ hacker is actually a good way to contribute something towards the online safety of the world. Hence, if you are interested I will highly recommend to get certified and make a difference.


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