Fact vs Fiction: The Truth About Hackers

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Many of us have a distorted view of who hackers are and what they do. It can be easy to blur fact with fiction when thinking about hacking, so it’s time for some myth busting.

Below, we’ll shed light on the reality behind what hackers really do, how they do it, and why.

5 Common Myths About Hackers

Myth #1: Hackers work alone in a dark room

Reality: While we often see hackers portrayed alone in a basement, they can work from anywhere there is an internet connection. Many are employed as part of teams, working day jobs.

Myth #2: They are always working against the clock

Reality: Hacking is a time-consuming activity and rarely has a hard stop for working. Hackathons, for example, can last for days, and routine penetration testing on software or cybersecurity can take as long as three weeks. (1)

Myth #3: Hackers can guess your password easily

Reality: Breaking into a computer is no easy feat. Hackers wishing to do harm often must guess passwords with usernames or run a computer program that does the guessing for them, which can take many hours. (2)

Myth #4: During a hack, ones and zeros zoom across the screen

Reality: Hackers often use command prompt, terminal programs, or various other tools to easily read and see large amounts of data, which isn’t moving across the screen at warp speed. (3)

Myth #5: Hacking is always criminal

Reality: This couldn’t be further from the truth! Hacking is completely legal when a person is given consent to find weaknesses in servers or software. (1) Many hackers work hard every day to prevent cyberattacks, and they make hacking a legal career.


As you can see, hacking is not always what we imagine it to be. Many hackers are working long hours with their teams to ensure that data is safe from those with malicious intentions.

Become an Ethical Hacker

Many hackers lead successful careers keeping data safe, and you can be, too. Help protect organizations from data breaches with King University’s online IT degree. Designed for working adults, King University’s online programs allow you to advance your career while balancing your busy life. In addition, the accelerated nature of the online degree means you can graduate in as little as 16 months with transfer credits.



1. highbitsecurity.com
2. cso.com
3. infoworld.com