We are currently in the midst of a crisis in the use of computers, and it is getting worse everyday. Our systems today are not as secure as one may think. They are considerable less secure that the paper system that we us today, and we are rapidly replacing the paper system with computers. The threat to our security as a nation is considerable, but the threat to an individual privacy and identity is even greater. Computer hacking as evolved so much since the 1980's, today's time and the future.
First lets talk about what hacker is. The stock definition is that "ones who uses programming skills to gain illegal access to a computer network or file". Hackers originally came to be known an individual who enjoys learning about computer systems and how to stretch their capabilities. Hacking can go back as far as 1878. The first report is of ten boys that kicked the phone system off just as a prank. Hacking has not been a real problem until the early 1980's when IBM released the first personal computer. Within the next two years almost all microcomputer operating systems, except MS-DOS and Apple, would be dead. As prices plunged all the self-respecting hackers would own their own computers. Hackers then stopped sneaking around computer labs at night. In 1984 the US Congress passes the Comprehensive Crime Control Act giving the US Secret Service jurisdiction over computer fraud. At this time the vast majority of computers could only be accessed by discovering individual phone lines. Thus one of the most treasured prizes for a hacker would a phone number to some mysterious computer. In 1988 Robert Morris, son of NSA chief scientist Robert Morris Sr., writes an exploit that will forever be know as the Morris Worm. It used a combination of finger and sendmail commands to break into computers, coping itself and then send copy after copy on to other computers.
The year 2000 was an eventful one or he history of hacking.