Learn to hack to protect yourself

How do hackers work? Which backdoors in your fixed or wireless network do they exploit? How do they manipulate or frustrate PCs and servers? How do they ensure that they remain anonymous? Anyone who knows the working method of malicious hackers and the latest vulnerabilities is already a big step on the way to better protect their own home network and everything that is attached to it. We'll show you how to become an expert – or ethical hacker.

Hackers are in the spotlight, helped perhaps by television successes like Black Mirror and Mr. Robot. The latter gives a nice insight into the world of hackers. Security expert Elliot Alderson, the protagonist of the series, aims to make the world a better place. Hacking may be too easy (or too fast) for him at times, but the series is certainly realistic, aided by a team of security experts and technical consultants. For example, the first episode already explains how the Tor network works and that it is not as anonymous as you think. Topics such as DoS attacks and rootkits are also discussed.

Learn from the experts

Those who delve into the subject will not only see series like Mr. Better understand the robot, but can also better arm itself against malicious hackers in daily reality. An ideal starting point is the very complete Ethical Hacking video course on Udemy. The course contains 120 detailed videos on ethical hacking and computer security and is taught by an experienced IT professional with nearly 10 years of experience in this field. More than 120,000 people preceded you! The course is also suitable for beginners. For example, important terms and techniques are first properly explained, such as the Tor network, key-loggers, rootkits and firewalls. You will also receive tips for using the terminal, which you will use frequently in the course.

Kali Linux

You can follow the course passively, but you don't have to. You are immediately taken by the hand when installing the Linux operating system Kali, which is popular among ethical hackers. Also Elliot from Mr. Robot uses it for his exploits. It is nice, especially for beginners, that the installation in a virtual machine is done in the free software VirtualBox. This allows you to 'go loose' without breaking anything within your own operating system, such as Windows or Mac OS. Nice if you accidentally pick up viruses or malware or become a target yourself. Kali is full of ready-to-use and pre-configured tools for, for example, so-called penetration testing. A penetration test is in fact a test of one or more computer systems for vulnerabilities. It can help you, for example, to test your own router, home network and other systems (that you own!) and improve security if necessary. In addition to being educational, the course is also very practical. Of course there are limits: the course is emphatically not intended for illegal activities.

Tor network

After the installation of Kali Linux, the course continues with a thorough explanation of, among other things, the Tor network, proxy servers and VPN connections. They can help you remain anonymous. It not only gives an insight into how hackers do this, but you can of course also apply it yourself to protect your privacy, for example. Especially interesting is the material about darknet, the network that is hidden behind the well-known word-wide-web and that is not accessible via a normal browser or search engine. The course explains how to take your (first?) cautious steps with the Tor browser here. When you think of darknet, you may immediately think of illegal marketplaces where weapons and drugs are traded, whatever else there is, but it's interesting to see it with your own eyes. And for ethical hacking or for gaining knowledge, the Tor network is also a useful aid. Using the darknet in itself is not punishable, as long as you do not engage in illegal activities or acquire illegal goods.

Wifi network

Reports about vulnerabilities of Wi-Fi networks regularly appear in the news. Almost everyone has a wireless network at home, which means that you should definitely be alert to this. An important part of the course shows what methods there are to crack wireless networks and routers and how to use them. Not only the childishly easy to crack WEP encryption, but also more modern security such as WPA and WPA2. This way you immediately know where the pain points are and how you can prevent your network from being broken into. Anyone who makes a website or manages a web server themselves will find the lessons about sql injections and DoS attacks (Denial of Service) interesting. Demonstrates and explains how these work.

Getting started yourself?

The course gives you a good foundation to improve your computer skills or, if it appeals to you, to become an ethical hacker yourself. This is a computer specialist hired by companies to detect and report errors and security holes in networks and systems. We have a special offer on Udemy's approximately 13-hour video course. The offer is exclusive to Computer!Totaal readers for 29.99 euros (instead of 194.99 euros).

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