Ethical hacking is increasingly becoming a famous phrase used in the IT industry. The security vulnerabilities are getting exposed each passing day, and protecting data and tools from potential attacks; it becomes crucial to use counter attempts. Ethical hacking is one of them. Call them white hat hackers, pen testers, legal hackers, or anything else, ethical hackers are smart enough to find flows in the security of an organization and suggest measures to keep them secure.
What is Ethical Hacking?
Ethical hacking uses the same hacking concepts as used in hacking done with malicious intentions. However, the change of interest makes all the difference. While unethical hacking focuses on finding loopholes in security and benefitting from stealing information from the system, ethical hacking focuses on discovering and sealing these holes to prevent unethical hacking.
The pen testers (comes from penetration testing) are the professionals who are experts in hacking systems. Still, they use it for the good of the organization and suggest the security measures where repairs are needed. Ethical hackers make use of the tools that can help them enhance their efforts and provide information on the possible ways an organization may experience security vulnerability.
Ethical hackers are hired by many organizations (especially, in the IT industry) to keep an eye on their systems and protect it from any potential hacking attempts. They not only work for private organizations, many security firms and law enforcement agencies seek their support to protect their confidential data and catch the culprits.
9 Excellent Tools Every Ethical Hacker Uses and Recommends
There are millions of tools available in the market that claim to support your hacking practices. However, ethical hackers prefer to use the tools that ensure their own safety while providing support for their hacking practices.
WireShark is a tool used for capturing network protocol details and enables real-time data analysis. It captures real-time network data packets and returns the information in a human-readable format. WireShark serves as a great tool to learn all about the network and security constraints, which helps determine if there are any problems.
WireShark certification is required to make your impression as a practiced ethical hacker. To unlock the potential of WireShark, you must learn how to use all the features provided in the tool and use it to interpret what possible aspects are weaker and may become an entry gate for hackers.
WireShark is the most basic tool that is a must to learn if you want to develop your career in the field of ethical hacking. On top of all these benefits, WireShark is an open-source tool, hence no charges for using it.
Ethical hacking is all about performing random security checks and audits. Nmap stands for Network Mapper, and it does what the name suggests. Nmap helps you surf through and find open ports and audit the network you are using. It is trusted by millions of system administrators around the world to keep their network in check.
It helps monitor the connected servers, hosts, audits the uptime of each, and understands the network constraints that include user-specific information. Nmap is also a free tool to use and is one of the best ways to understand and map the network security and upgrade constraints accordingly. Ethical professionals prefer this tool over any other as the consistent information over the network makes it easier to protect the data and the entire network.
A tool coming up from the digital forensic background, Maltego is an excellent tool to search for information that can picture possible cyber attacks. Maltego offers services for free or using the paid version, you can get your hands on all the functionalities it offers. Maltego is also a popular tool among Kali Linux users for making their efforts sharper.
Maltego can locate and aggregate data from various resources. It provides support for analyzing collected data in real-time through the web. It empowers the security decisions by providing all the information an organization needs to clear out any hacking possibilities.
Cain and Abel
What's the most obvious way of hacking a website, a system, or software? Using the user id and password. And guessing the password is the most challenging thing in this entire scenario. By keeping passwords stronger, a person can protect their data from possible security vulnerabilities. But for hackers, there are a plethora of tools available in the market that work as password crackers to help them crack the code.
Cain and Abel is one of the very popular password hacking tools that various hackers use for their support. This tool supports hashcode cracking and finding the password string using network packets.
It uses multiple password cracking methods like brute force, dictionary attack, cryptanalysis attack, rainbow table attack, and more. It is available for free and is one of the favorites of ethical hackers.
A tool dedicated to Kali Linux users, Faraday allows maximizing the functionality of all associated tools as it provides an IDE to control all the hacking tools that can provide excellent results. It introduces an IPE (Integrated Penetration-Test Environment) that is an IDE for users to perform pen-testing and support hacking attempts.
Users can program their hacking routines through the IDE, and it works just like you program anything else. The ease of executing the efforts makes it a recommended tool for hackers and provides faster and efficient results. Faraday is an open-source tool for the community that keeps updating the definitions to upgrade the results it provides.
Nikto is a web application vulnerability scanner tool that helps ethical professionals to thoroughly search for any possible holes in the security of a web server. The vulnerability exposure rate of this tool is very high, as it can thoroughly scan and provide results that help make your web servers stronger than ever. Nikto scans for outdated web server patches, version problems of each server, and more, just like any other scanners out there.
However, the community of experienced developers is supporting this tool, which becomes the sole reason why many hackers prefer this tool over other options. For example, an organization is looking to test their web server that supports the functions of their uber clone web app. Nikto can help them solve any problems regarding the connection, updates, software patches, and more without taking much time to provide excellent results.
John the Ripper
The tool is as interesting to use as its name sounds. John the Ripper is another password hacking tool that can work on cracking even very complex passwords and assist the white hat hackers for success. It is primarily used to perform dictionary attacks on passwords.
This tool uses the encryption algorithm that is used to encrypt the password to convert the string into the same format and then matches the original password with it to check if that assumed phrase is the password or not. It contains a list of words or previously collected passwords to check the right string. This tool is available for free and helps minimize the guessing work effortlessly.
Kismet is also popular among ethical hackers when they examine and search for network vulnerability. This tool is an absolute treat for all the users as it provides support for intrusion detection, packet sniffing, network detecting, and more. It also supports raw monitoring mode and includes all its functionalities supporting the 802.11 WLANs.
It can run on Linux, Mac OS X, and Microsoft Windows also. It can perform packet sniffing on various 802.11 supportive networks and monitor the traffic flowing. This hacking tool helps in developing a clear understanding of how intruders can attack your system from the ports that are open and provide excellent support for delivering coping mechanisms to remain safe from these kinds of attacks.
Metasploit is assigned a single task that it concludes excellently- exposing vulnerabilities. Metasploit is a very popular framework of the world of hackers and is used by white hat hackers worldwide to check and scan the system for possible vulnerabilities. Metasploit is a must-learn tool for anyone who wishes to enter the hacking world as an ethical hacker.
Metasploit is helping the hackers find vulnerabilities from the system of an organization easily. This hacking framework can easily identify and track the vulnerabilities that can open gates for hackers to steal information. Moreover, the tool helps strategize, plan, and execute appropriate actions as per the need.
Ethical hackers have a lot of responsibilities on their shoulders. Not only protecting the organization from possible security breaches, they are also held responsible for ensuring there are no security vulnerabilities with every software patch update and operating system changes.
Therefore, it becomes crucial to use these tools that provide a seamless integration facility and also the ability to find and resolve any issues before the attacks. With the right set of tools and expertise at hand, any organization can rely on protecting their confidential data from hackers and keep their approaches as secure as ever.
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About the Author:
Deep is an aspiring entrepreneur and co-founder of Elluminati Inc - Uber Clone App Development Company. Deep has led 75+ startups on the right path with their information-admiring entrepreneurial skill and guidelines. Along with that he loves to craft content on topics including on-demand services like uber, finances, technology trends and many more.
- Hakin9 is a monthly magazine dedicated to hacking and cybersecurity. In every edition, we try to focus on different approaches to show various techniques - defensive and offensive. This knowledge will help you understand how most popular attacks are performed and how to protect your data from them. Our tutorials, case studies and online courses will prepare you for the upcoming, potential threats in the cyber security world. We collaborate with many individuals and universities and public institutions, but also with companies such as Xento Systems, CATO Networks, EY, CIPHER Intelligence LAB, redBorder, TSG, and others.
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Great article, Loved it! Thanks for sharing…