Profiling Hackers: The Science of Criminal Profiling as Applied to the World of Hacking

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Complex and controversial, hackers possess a wily, fascinating talent, the machinations of which are shrouded in secrecy. Providing in-depth exploration into this largely uncharted territory, Profiling Hackers: The Science of Criminal Profiling as Applied to the World of Hacking offers insight into the hacking realm by telling attention-grabbing tales about bizarre characters that practice hacking as an art.

Focusing on the relationship between technology and crime and drawn from the research conducted by the Hackers Profiling Project (HPP), this volume applies the behavioral science of criminal profiling to the world of internet predators. The authors reveal hidden aspects of the cyber-crime underground, answering questions such as: Who is a real hacker? What life does a hacker lead when not on-line? Is it possible to determine a hacker’s profile on the basis of his behavior or types of intrusion? What is the motive behind phishing, pharming, viruses, and worms?

After gaining notoriety for breaking into many high-profile computer systems, the Italian hacker Raoul Chiesa turned to ethical hacking in 1995. Today he uses his skills and abilities to find ways to protect networks and computer systems. Stefania Ducci is a member of the Counter Human Trafficking and Emerging Crimes Unit at the United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute (UNICRI). Silvio Ciappi is a criminologist who lectures at the University of Pisa and studies criminal profiling. These three experts with vastly different backgrounds explore the clandestine network of cyber-criminals, providing an unparalleled glimpse into the secret lives of these malevolent individuals.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781420086935
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 12/11/2008
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 279
  • Sales rank: 917,832
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction to Criminal Profiling

Brief History of Criminal Profiling

Serial Crimes and Criminal Profiling: How to Interpret Them

Criminal Profiling: Applying it to Study Hackers

Introducing "Cybercrime"

Information Technology and Digital Crimes

1980, 1990, 2000: Three Ways of Looking at Cybercrime

Mr. Smith, Hackers and Digital Crimes in the IT Society

Digital Crimes vs. Hacking: Terminology and Definitions


To Be, Think, and Live as a Hacker

Evolution of the Term

The Artifacts of the Hacker Culture

One Ethics or More?

Understanding Hackers: How Far Have We Gone?

What are the Motives Behind Hacking?

The Colours of the Underground

Commonly Recognized Hacker Categories

The HPP Project

The Planning Phase

The Questionnaires

First Level Analysis

Second Level Analysis

Who are Hackers? Part 1

What are We Trying to Understand?

Gender and Age Group

Background and Place of Residence

How Hackers View Themselves

Family Background

Socio-Economic Background

Social Relationships

Leisure Activities


Professional Environment

Psychological Traits

To Be or to Appear: the Level of Self-Esteem

Presence of Multiple Personalities

Psychophysical Conditions

Alcohol & Drug Abuse and Dependencies

Definition or Self-Definition: What is a Real Hacker?

Relationship Data

Who are Hackers? Part 2

Handle and Nickname

Starting Age

Learning and Training Modalities

The Mentor's Role

Technical Capacities (Know-How)

Hacking, Phreaking or Carding: the Reasons Behind the Choice

Networks, Technologies and Operating Systems

Techniques Used to Penetrate a System

Individual and Group Attacks

The Art of War: Examples of Attack Techniques

Operating Inside a Target System

The Hacker’s Signature

Relationships with the System Administrators


The Power Trip

Lone Hackers

Hacker Groups

Favourite Targets and Reasons


Principles of the Hacker Ethics

Acceptance or Refusal of the Hacker Ethics

Crashed Systems

Hacking/Phreaking Addiction

Perception of the Illegality of Their Actions

Offences Perpetrated with the Aid of IT Devices

Offences Perpetrated without the Use of IT Devices

Fear of Discovery, Arrest and Conviction

The Law as Deterrent

Effect of Convictions

Leaving the Hacker Scene

Beyond Hacking



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