Blog / What is the concept of hacking

What is the concept of hacking

by SW Team

To begin to understand what hacking means, we must first understand what a hacker is, what types exist and what role they play in the IT sector.

Types of hacker:

In the IT sector, a hacker is a person with advanced technical skills in computers and computer systems. These skills allow them to deeply understand how computer systems work and how to interact with them in creative ways. Hackers in the IT sector can be classified into several categories:

  1. White-hat Hackers: These are computer security professionals who use their skills to identify and fix vulnerabilities in systems and networks with the aim of improving security. They work legally and are often hired by companies or organisations to perform penetration tests, security audits and other activities related to information protection.

  2. Black-hat Hackers: are individuals who use their skills to gain illegal or unauthorised access to computer systems. Their motivations can vary from information theft to system sabotage. These activities are illegal and can have serious legal consequences for those who engage in them.

  3. Grey-hat Hackers: are somewhere between ethical hackers and crackers. They often discover vulnerabilities in computer systems without authorisation, but may choose to inform system owners without maliciously exploiting the vulnerability. While their intentions may not necessarily be malicious, their actions may be considered illegal.

It is important to note that the term "hacker" in the IT industry can have negative connotations due to its association with illegal computer intrusion activities. However, there are also ethical hackers who play an important role in improving computer security and protecting systems against malicious attacks.


Common vulnerable devices:

Now that we understand what hacking entails, it is essential to recognise that our everyday devices can be at risk. From our computers to our smartphones and IoT devices at home, virtually everything connected to the internet can be vulnerable to attack. Let's explore which common devices can be hacked and how we can protect ourselves:

  1. Personal computers (PCs and laptops):

    • Type of hacking: Malware attacks, ransomware, social engineering attacks, exploitation of software vulnerabilities, unauthorized remote access.
    • How to identify it: If you notice sudden changes in your computer's performance, such as a significant slowdown or strange behaviour such as unwanted pop-ups, you may have been hacked. Also, if you notice unusual activity on your online accounts, such as emails sent from your account without your knowledge or unknown transactions, it could be a sign of hacking.
    • How to avoid it: Keep software up to date, install and maintain antivirus/antimalware software, avoid clicking on suspicious links or downloading suspicious files, use strong passwords and enable two-factor authentication (2FA), be wary of suspicious emails and messages, use a VPN connection on public Wi-Fi networks.
  2. Smartphones:

    • Type of hacking: Malicious apps, phishing via messages or emails, unauthorised access via public Wi-Fi networks, brute force password attacks.
    • How to identify: If you notice unusual behaviour on your phone, such as apps opening or closing on their own, sending messages or emails you didn't send, or if you notice suspicious activity on your bank or social media accounts from your phone, it could indicate a hack.
    • How to avoid it: Download apps only from trusted sources such as official app shops, avoid clicking on links or downloading files from untrusted sources, keep software up to date, use strong passwords and enable two-factor authentication, avoid connecting to unprotected public Wi-Fi networks, and avoid using unprotected Wi-Fi networks.
  3. Internet of Things (IoT) devices:

    • Type of hacking: Botnet attacks (e.g. Mirai), unauthorised access to connected devices, data theft.
    • How to identify: If you notice unauthorised changes to your IoT device settings, unusual activity or access from unknown locations in your device control applications or platforms, or if you notice a sudden increase in network traffic on your IoT devices, you may have been hacked.
    • How to avoid it: Change default passwords on IoT devices, keep firmware up to date, use a secure Wi-Fi network with WPA2 encryption, set up remote access securely or disable it if not necessary, periodically review device activity.
  4. Home network routers and devices:

    • Type of hacking: Brute force password attacks, unauthorised network access, DNS hijacking, denial of service (DDoS) attacks.
    • How to identify it: If you notice changes to your router settings that you did not make, such as unauthorised DNS redirects or network configuration changes, or if you experience a significant drop in the performance of your home network, you may have been hacked. In addition, if you notice unauthorised activity on your network, such as unknown devices connected or an increase in network traffic, it could indicate a hack.
    • How to avoid it: Change the router's default password, keep router firmware up to date, disable remote configuration if not necessary, use secure network encryption such as WPA2, use MAC address filtering if possible, set up firewalls to block unwanted traffic.

It is important to note that these are just some of the most common forms of hacking and basic preventative measures. Also, consider using additional security solutions as needed and make regular backups of your important data.



What should I do if I think my device has been hacked?

If you suspect that your device has been compromised, it is important to act quickly. First, disconnect your device from the Internet to prevent the hacker from accessing more information. Next, scan your device with reliable antivirus software to detect and remove potential threats. Change all your important passwords, and consider resetting your device to factory settings if you believe the intrusion was serious.

How can I protect my passwords from hackers?

To protect your passwords, use unique and complex passwords that combine upper and lower case letters, numbers and special characters. Avoid using the same password for multiple accounts and update them regularly. Also, enable two-factor authentication (2FA) whenever possible to add an extra layer of security to your accounts.

Is it safe to connect to public Wi-Fi networks?

Public Wi-Fi networks can be dangerous due to the risk of data interception by hackers. Whenever you connect to a public Wi-Fi network, avoid making financial transactions or sharing sensitive information. Use a VPN (Virtual Private Network) connection to encrypt your data and protect your privacy while on public Wi-Fi networks.

How can I avoid becoming a victim of phishing?

To avoid becoming a victim of phishing attacks, be on the lookout for suspicious emails, messages or phone calls asking for personal or financial information. Never click on links or download attachments from untrusted sources. Always verify the legitimacy of the source before providing any sensitive information.

What should I do if I am a victim of a ransomware attack?

If your device has been infected with ransomware, do not pay the ransom demanded by hackers, as it does not guarantee that you will get your files back and only perpetuates ransomware attacks. Disconnect your device from the Internet and turn it off to prevent the ransomware from spreading to other systems on your network. Then seek help from a computer security expert to assess the situation and recover your files if possible.

Remember that cyber security is an ongoing effort and that education about threats and security best practices is critical to protecting yourself online. Always stay informed about the latest cybersecurity trends and take proactive steps to protect your devices and data from potential threats.


In conclusion, it is crucial to remain vigilant and take proactive steps to protect our devices and networks in a world where technology is advancing rapidly. With the increasing sophistication of cyber attacks and the rise of connected devices, it is more important than ever to be aware of potential threats and security best practices. By following recommended preventative measures and watching for signs of potential hacks, we can significantly reduce the risk of falling victim to an intrusion into our digital security. Remember that computer security is an ongoing effort and that education and awareness are our best defences in this constantly evolving environment.