Category: Tech (Page 1 of 2)

Building your own app while staying home during the lockdown

With the lockdown being extended from time to time, it is unclear how long we are going to be stuck indoors this way.

 

Let’s not get fussy about being forced to stay in, come let’s make use of an unexpected break to engage your brain and develop some skills or use up some creativity and build a product or something that could be useful, like maybe a mobile application.

 

Yes, you can build your own app during this lockdown period at your home. There are unlimited problems out there in the world waiting to be addressed, find a solution through an app, and get down with the problem.

 

With internet access and ample online workshops and courses out there, app development has gotten easy. However, MyCaptain offers one where you can interact with a field professional LIVE throughout the 30-day workshop. 

 

First thing,  What is an app?  

 

The app is nothing but an idea that will ease out a whole lot of things. So getting an idea and evaluating if the idea will make a change in the lives of the users and how much of a success and use an app will be. 

 

Before starting or getting the idea of building an app you need to ask yourself a set of questions 

Why should you build an app? 

Apps are out there to make our day to day lives easy in today’s digitally advancing era where one doesn’t have the time and energy to deal with smaller issues. 

 

Would you rather Paytm your bill or withdraw cash out and then make the payment? 

 

So once you identify the problem that is prevalent around and work on creating a solution for it. Your solution will develop into an app that will bridge the gap between the problem faced and the solution sought.

Identify the need for an app?  

All your app needs to focus on is will it solve the problem? Ask yourself this question and is there a need for this new app, will it bring a solution to the problem? If yes, then go start building your app. 

What are you targeting through your app? 

Be specific about critical aspects like who will this app you plan on creating cater to, is the problem you plan on easing out a burning issue and will your app really change the game in the field. 

 

Affordability of the app? 

Can you afford to turn your idea into a complete product, building apps can be time and money consuming. You will need to include all the costs that building an app will occur, right from researching, designing, developing, and promoting your app must be considered well before diving into it. 

 

Get an estimate of your project and then proceed further with it.

 

Once these questions are answered and you are confident your idea will make it out as a successful product you can get to the steps of app development. 

Layout the sketch for your app

The idea may be solid but you will need to plan out the actuals, start with sketching out the idea and build a list of features you want to include in your app. 

  • Identify the features and functionality to be included. To begin with, start off with your Minimal Viable Product (MVP)  By doing this you include the things that are crucial, perfect them, save time, and eventually improvise on the app.
  • Try and eliminate irrelevant features off your list. Divide the items as ‘must-have features’ and ‘good to have them features’ to cut out the extras. Remove the noncore features your app will be handling.

Do your essential market research 

After laying out your draft work now it’s time for a reality check. Time to research the viability of your idea once it turns out as a finished product. Conducting your market research is one step one can’t miss. Your market research will put all those missing blocks that your project has to work on.

 

The actual use and demand for it and the use of the product. The target customers/users for the app aims at. 

 

  • Any competitors you might evaluate before starting your project? 
  • Is your app planning on filling the gaps of your competitors? 
  • Also, useability of your product, will the masses use your product and will your app be an actual game-changer?

Give your app a design

The time you assemble all your objectives and functionalities from individual blocks to a single rough piece. The design gives a skeleton-like framework for your app to move ahead and work with. 

 

Design is crucial as it is the underlying factor that will determine the success of your app. It is the UX/UI design that makes your app usable and good. Choose a platform you want to develop your app for.

Development of your application

Choose which approach you want to use to develop your app – native, hybrid, or drag and drop builders.

 

Native app development means developing an app for a particular operating system. As the name suggests, hybrid app development is used to create apps that are compatible with both Android and iOS platforms. For a starter with a limited budget, a hybrid would be a more suitable choice.

 

Then there’s drag and drop app building platforms like Appy Pie, AppSheet, and BuildFire that allow you to develop mobile apps with zero coding knowledge. You just have to choose a template or drag and drop elements and your app will be ready in no time. 

 

Choose the right programming language and build your app. Or you could hire a web developer and get your app development sorter out, you will not be restricted to what you want in your app under here.

Test your app on the device of your choice

Testing your apps is an important stage in your app-building process. By testing your app, you can verify the functionality, usability, and correctness of your app. Testing helps to fix bugs and user experience issues. 

 

While there are various kinds of testing available, the most recommended types would be: Internal Test and the External Test. 

 

Internal testing your app by the development team as if you were the end-user. 

 

While external testing on the other hand requires you to give the app to people who are not familiar with you or your mobile app.

Launch your app

Now that your app is ready to be published, it is time to let the world know and use your app. First register into respective app stores and submit your app there. Follow the guidelines given for the store to make your app store optimized to make the best of it.  

Promote and market your app

Time to market your app. Marketing any product is essential for its success, the same with apps too. Pick out the most effective ways to market and promote your application. There are numerous ways to market your app, choose the best that suits your app the best.  Use your website, social media, PR, or word of mouth to attract users to make your app popular.

 

So these are the basic things you must look into while developing an app, this lockdown, start your research on what you would want to change, and build an app right from your home. Do get in touch with MyCaptain to get some assistance and mentoring on app building from professionals in the field of app development. 

 

Different uses of IoT (Internet of Things) in today’s world

The Internet of Things, or IoT, refers to connecting the billions of devices around us with the internet so that they can share and use data.

 

Today, anything from something small as a pill to something big as an airplane can be turned as a part of the IoT. This is all thanks to the super-cheap computer chips available today in combination with the usage of wireless connectivity.

 

A new level of digital intelligence can be added to simple objects by adding sensors to them. These objects would otherwise be dumb. IoT helps in enabling them to communicate real-time data without involving a human being.

How is the internet of things helpful?

IoT is regarded as a significant frontier that can improve almost all activities in our lives.

IoT is helpful since it can turn almost any device into a smart one. Here’s how IoT is helpful 

  • IoT promotes efficient resource utilization.
  • It minimizes human efforts in many life aspects.
  • Enabling IoT reduces the cost of production and maximizes the returns
  • It makes analytics decisions faster and accurately
  • It boosts the real-time marketing of products
  • Provide a better client experience
  • It guarantees high-quality data and secured processing

Where can we actually use it?

You must be itching to know where this amazing tech can be implemented or used. Here are some of them…

Smart home

One of the best and the most practical applications of IoT, smart homes really take the convenience and home security to the next level. 

 

Despite IoT being applied to different levels for smart homes, the best one mixes entertainment with smart utility systems.

 

For instance, the insights on your everyday water usage can be given by your electricity meter. The set-top box that allows you to record shows from remote. Automatic illumination, connected surveillance, and advanced security systems all fit into the concept of smart homes. 

 

We can be sure that enhanced home security would be further enabled as IoT evolves and makes most of our devices smarter!

Smart City

The smart city includes a range of use cases. These include traffic management water distribution, waste management, urban security, and environmental monitoring. 

 

IoT can solve issues like traffic congestion, minimize noise and air pollution, and even make cities safer. 

Smart grids

Smart grids are a special one. 

 

A future smart grid will use information regarding electricity suppliers as well as consumers to improve the reliability, efficiency, and cost of electricity. All this is promised to be automated.

 

41,000 monthly Google searches highlight the concept’s popularity. Even you might have come across the term on your search box

Industrial internet

Here’s another special IoT application that is sought to have the highest overall potential according to market research such as Gartner or Cisco. 

However, its popularity currently doesn’t reach the masses as smart homes or wearables do. 

 

There’s a lot going for IoT in the industrial side of things. So keep an eye out for it and you will be sure to spot some technological marvels.

Self-driven Cars

We’ve seen a lot about self-driven cars. 

 

Google took a jab at it. Tesla has somehow made it work. And Uber too had its own version of self-driving cars which were later given a rest.

Since it’s human lives on the roads that we’re dealing with, we need to ensure the technology has all that it takes to ensure better safety for the passenger and those on the roads.

 

The cars make use of several sensors and embedded systems connected to the cloud, It also uses the internet, which keeps generating data and sends them to the cloud for informed decision making through Machine Learning. 

 

Currently, there are many complications like laws and policies that are stopping the full effect of self-driven vehicles. However, from what we’ve witnessed so far, we can rest assured that it is one of the best applications of IoT.

Connected Health (Digital health/Telehealth/Telemedicine)

Connected health is considered to be the sleeping giant of IoT applications.

 

Smart medical devices and connect health care system does have a lot of potential behind their concept. And not just for the benefit of the companies but also for the well-being of everyone in general. 

However, Connected Health has not reached the masses yet. Noticeable uses and large-scale successes are still to be seen

Smart retail

If you have yet to see the video of Amazon Go, you should see it right now. It is the eCommerce giant’s take on the concept store.

 

Perhaps this is the best use of technology in the way we go shopping.

 

The retail store allows you to go cashless by deducting money from your Amazon wallet. When you pick products from the shelves physically, it adds it to your virtual cart in real-time. It even modifies and changes itself if you are having a difficult time deciding what to buy.

 

One of the best features of the concept store is that it is cashier-less. You don’t have to stand in line or get in contact with someone. Instead, you can just step out after you pick up your products from shelves.

 

If this technology is effective enough to fetch more patronage, Its sure to become a norm in the coming years.

Smart supply chain

Supply chains have been gotten smarter in precious years. 

 

The solution of tracking goods as they hitting the road as well as allowing suppliers to exchange inventory data has been in the market for years now. 

 

While it is perfectly logical that it will get a new push with IoT, so far its popularity remains limited.

Smart farming

Smart farming is often overlooked in terms of business as it doesn’t really fit in popular categories like mobility, industrial, or health.

 

However, IoT can revolutionize the way farmers work. It can bring mobility to farming operations and the capability to monitor large amounts of livestock.

 

But not many people know about this idea and thus, it has not yet reached the large-scale attention it deserves.

 

Nevertheless, it is one of the IoT applications one would be foolish to underestimate.

 

Smart farming is predicted to become an essential part of the agricultural-product exporting countries.

 

How to become an Android App Developer?

The way we communicate, conduct business, and consume entertainment has been changed a lot by the mobile apps we use daily. Moreover, the way we learn things about the world.

 

Do you have a killer app idea and you’re ready to turn it into a reality and take it to market? 

 

There’s no doubt that you wish to get your first download, review, and ultimately profits.

 

But the issue is that you don’t know where to start or how to build an app.

 

We are here to help you the same way we’ve helped thousands of students across the country build their first app!

 

What is mobile application development?

It is the process of writing and developing software for small, wireless computing devices (we call them mobile phones – ok, iPhone *sigh*).

 

Like Web application development, mobile application development resonates closely with more traditional software development. 

 

A unique aspect of mobile apps, however, is that they are built to take advantage of the incredible features each mobile device offers. 

 

For instance, iPhone’s accelerometer is being used in many of the gaming apps and the temperature sensor in smartwatches is used for mobile health apps.

Why choose Android Development?

Android development gives you many reasons to choose it over others. Some notable ones among them are listed below:

License 

Since it is an open-source platform, android reduces the cost of package licensing. This also contributes to having low initial investment and high ROI.

 

They have a vast community that allows you to directly interact with the developers themselves in case of problems or future versions.

Android is an evolving platform

Google keeps changing certain functionalities and releasing the new versions every now and then. So, you get updates on a regular basis which include improvised features that are added to your application. 

 

This is something that can catch the eye of any user but also gives the developers an exciting challenge.

Easy to learn 

If you ask any professional developer, they will agree that the time spent behind learning android app development is significantly less than any other technologies.

 

Simply having the knowledge of Java and languages like Perl, PHP can get the job done.

Who is an Android Developer? 

An android developer makes people’s lives easier by developing mobile or desktop applications that help make day-to-day activities easier.

 

So, if you ask who exactly is an Android Developer, one would say, he/she is a Software Developer who specializes in designing applications for the Android marketplace.

 

Android developers working in an organization have to create apps with regard to the domain of the company they work on. They can develop simple applications like a calculator as well as complex ones like gaming applications (PUBG, Call of Duty, etc.)

 

As an Android developer, you need to be very clear about your job posting and your responsibilities. 

 

Here are the Job roles you should expect:

  • Mobile App Developer
  • Android Engineer
  • Mobile Architect
  • Embedded Software Engineer – Mobile
  • Lead Software Engineer- Mobile
  • Android Developer
  • Mobile Developer

Who can become an Android Developer? 

If you’re a beginner and wish to build a career in Android Development, we suggest you get started with some online courses like MyCaptain. 

MyCaptain offers a 30-day LIVE workshop on android app development and appoints you a mentor who is not only with you in every step of the journey but is also easy to interact with. You can check out the workshop by clicking here…

 

Let’s take a look at a few notable skills one should master if they wish to become an android developer,

 

  • In-depth knowledge of Android SDK along with various versions of Android.
  • Pro efficient in programming languages like Java/Kotlin.
  • Complete understanding of Android UI design principles and best practices.
  • Decent knowledge with SQL.
  • Understanding and practice of using code versioning tools like Git.
  • Familiarity with RESTful APIs that connect Android applications to back-end services.
  • Experience handling offline storage, performance tuning, and threading.
  • Ability to develop and design applications around UI such as touch.
  • Have the ability to identify business requirements and convert them into technical requirements.
  • Familiarity with cloud message APIs and push notifications.
  • Thorough knowledge of Google’s Android design principles and interface guidelines.
  • Familiarity with continuous integration.

Mastering these skills is definitely going to be worth your time as android is a domain that never runs out of jobs or opportunities. 

So don’t wait and become an amazing developer today!

 

Now that you have understood who is an Android Developer and what the job trends, let’s move on and take a look at how exactly you can become a successful Android Developer.

How to become a successful Android Developer?

1. Find out if Android development is for you

If you’re starting from scratch, you’ll have a lot of work to do to become an effective Android developer, so it makes sense that you are 100 percent sure this is the right path for you. 

 

One of the best ways to get a taste of a subject is to give it a go, even at its most basic level. 

 

There are some great introductory online courses that cost very little (some are even free) but can give you an idea of whether Android development is for you.

2. Learn Java (and a bit of C++ and SQL)

Ok, so ‘learn Java’ isn’t exactly a small step. In fact, for a lot of us, it’s quite the leap. But without it, you can’t really be an Android developer as most applications are written in Java. 

 

You should make sure that you’re sufficient in loops, lists, variables, and control structures. Additionally, once you have mastered the basics, you should be willing to practice on your own, which really does make you perfect.

 

The great thing about learning Java is that it isn’t just exclusively used for Android applications. In fact, it is consistently in the top five most in-demand programming languages in the UK, so you might find that learning Java is a good idea anyway.

 

You should also look into the basics of C++ as some applications are built in this and also SQL for databases within Android applications.

3. Download everything you’ll need

The studio is built to house everything you’ll need to begin and complete your Android application. It includes command-line tools, a code editor, an Android emulator, a compiler, and many more features. 

 

Alternatively, you can get the SDK without the Android Studio directly, although you’ll need to spend a little time extracting the information from compressed files.

 

Within the SDK you’ll be able to take advantage of its extensive software libraries, and tools designed for building, testing, and debugging Android apps.

4. Get to grips with the Android API

You should get comfortable with the Android application programming interface or API.

 

An API is essentially a pre-made source code library and provides groups of classes or packages that enable developers to easily write in code to their applications for certain features.

 

For example, developers will be able to access packages to build out the functionality of their applications. 

 

You can implement the android content package which lets your application access and publish data on a device. Or even enable Bluetooth or an in-app camera function, to name a few.

5. Create an Android application

Once you’ve mastered Java and become comfortable with API packages, you’ll be ready to dip your toe into making your own application. 

 

Your first application isn’t going to be perfect and you’ll probably become very frustrated with it very quickly! 

 

But once you can demonstrate that you can create an Android application – even a basic one – employers will begin to see your potential.  

 

A lot of junior roles offer in-house training. Thus, employers are often not expecting a hotshot Android developer with multiple apps under their belt to turn up. Moreover, for most businesses, a relatively blank canvas is very desirable. 

 

By using the Android Studio, you’ll be able to create your application in one space and take advantage of forums associated with it if you find you need some expert advice.

6. Get experience

Starting out in a new industry requires time, patience, and hard work to get recognized.

 

Acquiring the relevant skills and contacts can play an important part in getting a role as a developer. But gaining professional experience can help you progress to the next stage of your career even faster.

 

Training, workshops, and placements can help you gain the relevant skills and experience to get you started.

 

This will give you a better understanding of the role you want to go into and demonstrate your capability as a developer.

7. Network

Most employers are looking for open communication and collaboration. A starting developer will need to network and collaborate effectively to ensure they present themselves well.

 

Attending industry events and joining networking groups can be an effective way to make contacts. 

 

They can bring together hackers, developers, and coders. You will mee those who share the same interests. They might even offer advice and share information on future job opportunities.

 

Mastering how to code while the lockdown extends

Staying quarantined away from the outside world gives one plenty of time to try their hand out in a number of skills.

While some are working on their long-forgotten passion and others are on a lookout for fresh skills to learn during the lockdown period. Programming skills are becoming one of the popular skills to learn especially if you are interested in building and working with software programs. 

With lockdown extended, social interactions remain limited but it does give us ample time in our hands. 

So why not try your hand at some programming and venture out into the world of coding?

In this article, we will help you become the Yoda of coding just like thousands of our mentees

Let’s begin…

Why coding though?

Well in today’s highly digital era, every aspect we deal with is in some way or the other relate back to programming. 

In this era, learning how to program would mean contributing to shape and reshape our current world. 

Coding is a simplified form of problem-solving. Every program out there is a puzzle waiting to be solved. 

Even though, through programs you deal with problems in today’s digital world, it is through coding you create your software, apps, and websites. 

While some are simply curious and keen to learn a valuable skill and have time on their hands. Others are uncertain about their jobs and looking for a potential new career.  

Whatever your reasons are, this quarantine does make a great time to learn how to code when compared to hours of binging on Netflix social media.

 

How to learn to code?

With unlimited resources from the internet, the journey into the exciting world of software development is made easy. 

Though the internet makes it easy to access all that we want to learn, coding is how to begin. 

However, there are way too many options on learning how to code.

So do you pick up an online course and workshops or do you learn through some youtube tutorials or read through blogs on languages or learn through books on coding? 

Some more questions that pop up are how long will I take to learn to code? Can I go from a beginner to someone who can be a hired developer within one to three months?  

Well for starters, we suggest you get to know about the world of coding a little before venturing out into it. 

There are more than a dozen coding languages out there but to begin with, we have listed down a few of the coding languages one could pick up during this quarantine. 

Moreover, the steps to start your journey into coding have been broken down accordingly

Step1. Select the programming language that interests you

The mentioned are some of the basic coding languages any coder should be thorough with. 

HTML

When you try to go to the source of any webpage it leads to you the HTML coded lines. 

Hypertext Markup Language is basically the bones of the internet, it defines the structure and semantics of the content of your webpage. It tells you a webpage on what to be displayed, where, and how to fit things within a given style sheet. It creates connections to other web pages through hyperlinks. 

Even though HTML isn’t considered to be a programming language, it is an essential one to learn. 

 

CSS

Well, the next thing to learn in your journey of coding languages would be CSS. Just as HTML holds the basic structure and poise of your webpage, CSS is used to style and layout your webpage. 

It interacts with HTML structures as well as brings out the style and effect to your webpage. 

Pro tip: If you are looking to designing a career in UI/UX design, learning CSS can be truly helpful.

Javascript 

It is a language that brings interaction to the webpage. It is used to add functionality and make users feel more comfortable interacting with the webpages. 

In today’s world javascript has grown to be the most used coding language. It is a natural starting point for anyone learning to program, for the language is in high demand in the programming field.

For example, If you go to a website and click on a button, the javascript makes the button look like you’re actually clicking it.

Python 

Python is a high-level programming language with dynamic interpretation. If one wants to create programs that allow high user interaction in the webpages then python it is. 

It’s simple and easy to learn syntax emphasizes readability and reduces the cost of program maintenance.

For example, if you want to ensure an automatic payment or booking page for your client using python would help you code the best.

Step 2. Opt for Online Courses

Try out online courses on coding as they ensure you understand the coding principles and concepts thoroughly. They allow interaction and step by step process in learning the languages. 

Some of the online courses you could check out to start coding with

  • Codeacademy is a popular site that can help inexperienced coders learn the basics. The site offers a variety of courses that can help you learn programming languages and all their basic aspects for free. So if you’re a beginner this is where you could start.
  • MyCaptain provides Coder’s pack that gives you a start with Java and Python to learn. It provides interactive sessions with experienced coding professionals to learn from and also give in some hands-on experience with live projects as a part of the pack.
  • Coursera – Learn coding with Coursera’s programming for everybody. Coursera provides online certified courses on programming languages like python from top universities and organizations.
  • Coding NinjasTop destination for understanding and building data structures and algorithms. They provide online content and video support and simplify difficult topics and concepts too. Foundation, development, and advanced courses in coding are covered by coding ninja. 
  • MIT is a resourceful platform for curious programmers who want to learn from instructors at the highest level. While this isn’t the best option for beginners as the courses don’t let you interact with instructors, and you may not be able to access all course materials programming knowledge. Look into MIT OpenCourseware if you’d like to move beyond the basics.

Step 3 Practice 

Coding requires a lot of practice. It’s not enough to just understand the concepts. 

To learn to program, you have to write programs and more programs and more programs. 

Create an environment where you can focus on. Coding is an exercise that requires concentration. Moreover, you’ll need to be disciplined enough to set meaningful challenges for yourself. 

Good news though!

Quarantine is great for all that. 

Practice and get a solid hold of your coding basics. While you may not emerge from quarantine with a software development job. But with practice, it’s quite possible that you’ll have pushed through the hardest, most intense part of the journey.

 

Mastering the basics and understanding the world of 0’s and 1’s. 

What are the various ethical hacking certifications you can do?

If you are an IT or tech enthusiast, chances are that you’ve wondered about how you can become an ethical hacker. Well… we don’t blame you. 

Ethical hacking has a certain sense of mystery and vigilance surrounding it. The same has made thousands asking advice to learn ethical hacking or about the various ethical hacking courses available. 

Now, you’ve probably looked around a bit and understood the basics of ethical hacking, how is it different from hacking, or about the various programming languages you’ll be required to master. 

You may also know about the importance of gaining an ethical hacking certification. If you don’t, you can read about it in the last section of this article. Come back here once you are done, words don’t run. 

Assuming you know the value of becoming a certified ethical hacker brings to your career, you must be wondering about the various certifications you can get. 

Because we all like to have our options… there’s a wide range of ethical hacking certifications available. With each providing specific value to your hacking skills, one can’t help but wonder…

What are the best ethical hacking certifications? 

In this article, we will go through some of the best certifications you can gain to become a certified ethical hacker

P.S. You can choose to have multiple of them 😉 

 

Top ethical hacking certifications

Before heading out to acquire any ethical hacking certification(s), you must have a good knowledge of the subjects around it. It is always advisable to first learn ethical hacking, from basic to advanced-level stuff.

Moreover, you must have a strong grip on computing languages and topics like: 

You can learn these topics by reading ethical hacking books or other articles, watching YouTube videos, or by enrolling in an online ethical hacking course

Certified Ethical Hacking Certification (CEH)

If you wish to become an ethical hacker, you’ve probably heard about this one. 

Certified Ethical Hacker or CEH is the most common and broadly used certification program. A person who has gained this ethical hacking certification will be skilled in:

  • Understanding the mindset as well as the tools and techniques used by a malicious hacker
  • Finding vulnerabilities in the system 
  • Looking for weaknesses of the target system so that they can be fixed

CEH is the most basic of certifications and is the one that is sought the most by employers. EC-Council is the most trusted organization to gain CEH certification. They even provide instructor-led lectures and other study materials to assist you in passing the exam.

If you don’t have any training, you can still sit for the exam by submitting proof of two-years of relevant professional experience.  

GIAC Penetration Tester

Here’s a certification you can gain to become an expert on the subject of penetration in addition to the process of breaking into a system. 

Sys Admin, Networking, and Security (SANS) institute are responsible for running the Global Insurance Assurance Certification (GIAC) program.

They offer multiple courses and certifications with GIAC Penetration Tester (GPEN) being amongst the more popular ones. 

A person who wishes to become a certified ethical hacker by gaining a GPEN certification will be skilled in:

  • Attacking password hashes 
  • Advanced password attacks 
  • Initial target scanning
  • Attacks on web application 
  • Pen-testing foundations
  • Exploitation fundamentals
  • Moving files containing exploits 
  • Penetration testing using the Windows command line and power shell
  • Reconnaissance 
  • Vulnerability scanning

We suggest getting a GPEN certification from the SANS institutes.

Why?

Because it proves that you, as a professional has had a good balance between theoretical knowledge and practical training. 

Offensive Security Certified Professional

OSCP is an ethical hacking certification that has only been out for around a decade but has already gained a great reputation. It is advertised as a fully hands-on certification program by Offensive Security.  

OSCP is designed for tech professionals who wish to prove their clear understanding of the entire penetration testing process and lifecycle. 

The certification provides the holder to prove the ability to:

  • Recognize vulnerabilities
  • Exploit hosts
  • Generate and/or alter exploit code
  • Successfully perform tasks on compromised systems over various operating systems

Before you set yourself to sit on the 24-hour long exam, you must have a great understanding of,

  1. networking protocols,
  2. software development, and
  3. systems internals

Moreover, you’ll have to wrap your head around operating Kali Linux, an open-source project managed by Offensive Security. 

CREST Certifications

CREST is an international not-for-profit accreditation and certification body that represents in addition to supporting the technical information security industry. Their certifications are globally recognized across many countries including UK, Europe, Asia, and Australia. 

CREST offers ethical hacking certifications on organizational and individual-level on various topics such as:

  • Penetration Testing
  • Simulated Target Attack & Response/CBEST
  • Incident Response
  • Security Architecture

We suggest going through their website and understanding the entire process of becoming a certified ethical hacker through CREST. 

Certified Penetration Testing Consultant

CPTC certification is designed to teach IT professionals the business side of penetration testing. Mile2 is an organization that provides an accredited online course for gaining this ethical hacking certification

However, you can enroll in courses by other organizations or by Udemy and come back to Mile2 for appearing in the exam. 

CPTC certification proves that you’ve in-depth knowledge of

  1. Penetration testing
  2. Auditing security controls including physical as well as user security.

Moreover, it qualifies you for having 

  • Necessary skills required to work as a penetration testing team
  • Knowledge of the exploitation process 
  • Understanding of creating a buffer overflow against programs running on Windows and Linux while subverting features such as DEP and ASLR

CPTC ethical hacking certification exam consists of two parts. First, the examinee will take a fully hands-on penetration test. Then he/she takes two exams through the online Mile2’s Assessment and Certification System. 

4 out of 5 systems need to be exploited to pass the hands-on exam whereas the 2nd exam has a passing score of 70%. You’ll also need to create a Mile2 account which will be used for submitting fees as well as appearing for the exam.

Certified Penetration Testing Engineer

CPTE is another certification that you can gain through Mile2. However, CPTE is held to be one of the five core cybersecurity credentials and is internationally recognized for the same. 

You can use your Mile2 account to access the exam online. Its a 2-hour long exam consisting of 100 multiple-choice questions. 

Having a CPTE certification qualifies you to have knowledge of five key elements of pen testing:

  • Information Gathering
  • Scanning
  • Enumeration
  • Exploitation
  • Reporting

The cost of the exam is $500 USD which should be purchased from your mile2 account. 

Reasons to become a certified ethical hacker

The amazing element that ethical hacking jobs bring is that the employers hardly care about your educational background. However, this does not mean that they won’t require proof of your skills. 

Most recruiters look for a certified ethical hacker over one that isn’t. The reason behind it is simple, they want the best for the job, and certifications are a way to prove that you are indeed the best. 

Gaining an ethical hacking certification not only proves that you’ve skills but also that you are job-ready. 

Furthermore, gaining an ethical hacking certification also makes your skills globally recognizable. 

Because companies around the world constantly face cyber threats and the risk of getting attacked, they are in a constant lookout for new talents. 

As a result, becoming a certified ethical hacker also boosts your chances of going overseas for work. You can even get a permanent job at top companies like Google, Facebook, IBM, etc. 

Finally, despite your current field, having the ability to handle a cyberattack is always appreciated. Therefore gaining an ethical hacking certification also adds value to you as an employee. Hence, gaining certifications directly results in salary hikes. 

In addition to the above, each and every industry requires ethical hackers. Thus, you can choose to work for Netflix or explore the fashion industry with companies like Calvin Klein!

What is IoT? A simple explanation for the Internet of Things

Imagine as soon as you wake up, your alarm clock tells your coffee maker to make coffee and turn on the geyser.

Do you know what makes this dreamy morning possible? 

Yes, the Internet of Things! 

 

What is the Internet of Things? 

The Internet of Things, or IoT, refers to the billions of physical devices around the world that are now connected to the internet, all collecting in addition to sharing data.

In simple terms, IoT is the concept of connecting devices with the internet. Moreover, to each other! 

Sounds amazing, right? 

This includes everything:

  • Cellphones 
  • Coffee makers 
  • Washing machines 
  • Headphones 
  • Lamps, 
  • Wearable devices 
  • And almost anything else you can think of.  

In addition to the above, IoT also applies to components of machines. For example, the drill of an oil rig or a jet engine of an airplane.

Thanks to the arrival of super-cheap computer chips and the ubiquity of wireless networks, it’s possible to turn anything into a part of the IoT.

Everything from something as small as a pill to something as big as an airplane can be turned into a part of IoT. 

Moreover, it Increases efficiency by saving money and resources.

 

How does it work?

With built-in sensors, devices and objects are capable of connecting to an IoT platform. The platform combines data from different devices and applies its analytics to share important information with applications that address specific needs.

The platforms can also pinpoint what information is useful and what is safe to be ignored. Furthermore, this information can also be used to detect patterns, make recommendations, and detect possible problems even before they occur.

For instance, a car manufacturer might want to know which optional components are the most popular (alloy wheels or leather seats).

Using the Internet of Things technology, you can:

  • Detect areas in a showroom where customers linger longest using sensors.
  • Dive deep into the sales data to understand which components sell fastest.
  • Stop popular items from getting out of stock by automatically aligning sales data with supply data.
  • The information picked up by connected devices enables you to make smart decisions.

You will know which components to stock up on, based on real-time information. As a result, this helps you save both time and money.

You can make the processes more efficient using advanced analytics and can even automate repetitive tasks. 

Why is the IoT so important?

Connecting all the devices brings a new level of convenience and digital intelligence. Therefore, enabling them to communicate real-time data without involving a human being. 

By merging the digital and physical universes, IoT is making the world around us smarter and more responsive.

It not only connects a simple device with the internet but also provides features like:

  • real-time analytics 
  • platform to analyze the collected data 
  • cloud data storage 
  • trigger an action from a remote location 
  • remote notifications, etc. 

How Does IoT Impact You?

One might question the reason behind connecting all the devices.

There are many real-life scenarios that will help you understand what the future could look like and the value IoT could bring.

Say for instance you are making your way to attend a meeting. Using IoT technology, your car could have access to your calendar and already know the best route to take.

Moreover, if the traffic is heavy, your car might send a text to the other party notifying them that you will be late. 

What if your alarm clock not only wakes you up but also turns on the coffee maker?

It will be nice to have your morning coffee as soon as you are done brushing your teeth, wouldn’t it?

First, smart connected appliances are what people think of when they hear IoT. They imagine a smart home that is programmed to make life convenient and more energy efficient.

Next, IoT will have a positive effect on waste management. With the seamless integration of light, heat, and air conditioning that reacts to you, a lot of money could be saved on those heavy bills.

The possibilities and advantages are truly endless.

The truth is that IoT is vast and bring virtually endless opportunities and connections. Many of which we don’t yet have the knowledge to understand their complete impact on the world.

Only when the entire world becomes connected!

The top must-have skills for an IoT developer

As consumers become hasty to get their hands on the next smart technology, companies are looking for talented individuals with the right skill sets.

Knowing just coding won’t be enough for the next wave of software developers.

They will have to develop the ability to see the bigger picture and be intuitive problem solvers. Who recognize that the landscape is constantly changing, and who realize it is their responsibility to keep up.

These are a few skills you will require –

Machine Learning and Artificial intelligence

If we are able to decipher the patterns and eventually predict the outcome, only then will gathering and analyzing large sums of data be justified. 

AI will be called upon to handle more tasks and make autonomous decisions as IoT moves forward in the direction of becoming complex.

Design for Data

Big data drives IoT, and the job of software engineers, network engineers, as well as UX engineers will be to make the data work seamlessly for users.

So many cities are starting to take the help of developers in order to solve infrastructure problems and come up with innovative solutions. The ability to read and interpret data in a meaningful way will be one of the most sought after.

Automation

To get their products to market, developers will need to learn how to connect manual API testing with automatic API testing. This is due to a large number of interfaces and data. 

 

Hardware Interfacing

Hardware programming is a major step to take if you wish to become an embedded engineer. Learning how to program interfaces such as GPIO, I2C is essential for success. 

Knowing the ins and outs of one embedded system like Contiki and one operating system like Linux will greatly be valued.

UI/UX Design

Nothing sells if consumers can’t use it. The interfaces need to user-friendly and effective at performing various tasks.

Responsive Web Design and Service Design are the most valued skills in this aspect.

Moreover, UI/UX designers will be needed to develop and design Augmented Reality interfaces and products. 

What is Social Engineering? A guide to Ethical Hacking

“Hacking” ooooh… sounds so mysterious, doesn’t it? 

 

This mystery is exactly the reason behind so many searching for an answer to how to become an ethical hacker. It might also be something that made you crave for an introduction to ethical hacking in the first place. 

But if in case you haven’t, here it is… 

Ethical hacking is hacking but without any malicious intents like stealing or deleting data as well as with proper authorization. Moreover, ethical hackers use the means of hacking to break into the security of a system and report the vulnerabilities so that they can be improved upon. 

While the above was an intro to ethical hacking for beginners, this article focuses on a type of hacking attack used in both ethical and unethical hacking – social engineering. 

 

So what is social engineering?

Social engineering is obtaining information regarding an organization or a computer system by manipulating the end-users. In other words, social engineering refers to exploiting human emotions like greed or curiosity to gain unauthorized access to sensitive information. 

To accomplish this goal, hackers use a set of social engineering tools and techniques that we will be discussing later in this article. 

For now, know this…

In order to protect their network, it is important for someone aspiring to become an ethical hacker to understand social engineering and how its attacks are orchestrated. 

 

Let’s get started…

 

Phases of a social engineering attack

The cycle of a social engineering attack typically has four phases. Here they are:

  • Research: The first phase is to gather as much information regarding the company or the organization as possible. Hackers use the internet, social engineering tools, as well as methods of footprinting to do so.
  • Selecting the victim: since social engineering is all about manipulating an individual, this step plays an important role. The hacker determines a suitable target for the attack. One that is a part of the organization and is the most vulnerable to get manipulated. 
  • Getting closer: The third step is to get closer to the victim and try to make a relationship with him/her so that trust can be gained. 
  • Exploiting the trust: The final step is using that relationship to gather sensitive information.

 

Advantages of social engineering

Social engineering is one of the simplest cyberattacks and requires no knowledge of programming languages or coding to execute successfully. More than coding expertise, it requires the hacker to know about human behavior.

Nonetheless, the risk connected to being a victim of a social engineering attack is severe. 

The technique usually takes advantage of the weakest link of the organization and therefore, it is also known as “people hacking.” Hackers use social engineering so often because we as humans are inclined to trust. 

Our nature of believing each other is exploited to discover ways to hack into the system

Often times social engineering attacks are executed just with the purpose of information gathering. This information can then be used to plan a full-fledged cyberattack that can cost millions of dollars to an organization

The types of information hackers can gain using social engineering include:

  • Credentials of a user or an administrator
  • Security access to the building
  • Intellectual property such as design specifications, source codes, or other research-related documentation.
  • List of customers as well as sales prospects 
  • Sensitive network information that can be used to attack the security of the entire system

What is social engineering attack like?

A social engineering attack can be categorized into three types:

  • Human-based 
  • Mobile-based
  • Computer-based

Most social engineering attacks are human-based attacks. Meaning that they are executed by exploiting human behavior or emotions. 

Now let us take a look at the most common type of social engineering attack, Phishing

Phishing refers to sending out fraudulent or “phishing” emails that look legitimate enough for the victim to open it and click on the link or download the file attached to it. 

The file contains malware that can take control of the entire system. Moreover, the link redirects the victim to a made-up website that can be used to extract credit/debit card details as well as login credentials. 

There are two ways a hacker can trick you using the method of phishing:

 

Using a friend’s email

Using social engineering, if a hacker manages to take control of any one of your friend’s email he/she now has access to the contact list as well. 

You already have complete trust over a friend. As a result, the hacker has lesser work to do in the pursuit of phishing you. 

In other words, when a phishing email will be delivered to you from your friend’s mail id, you will be more prone to become a victim. 

 

Using a trusted source

Remember the countless emails you’ve gotten claiming that you’ve won a lottery or a travel package. 

Yeah… those are bad examples of phishing emails

Many hackers try to imitate a trusted source and create a completely logical scenario that asks a victim to give their login credentials. 

For example, if a person has an Instagram account (everyone does) the attacker can send a phishing email to the victim from a mail address that looks identical to the original Instagram’s mail ID. (“xxx@i.nstagram.com)

The attacker includes a completely made-up scenario in the mail that seems fully legitimate (“secure your account by logging in”)

The attacker now has your Instagram login credentials. But you may wonder what will the attacker gain by logging into your Instagram account. 

Well… most people use the same email and password everywhere. As a result, logging into your Instagram account to “secure” it costs you to become a victim of a social engineering attack. 

And if you are an employee of any organization, chances are, your organization will end up being under attack too. 

According to Verizon’s annual Data Breach Investigation Reports, social engineering attacks like phishing make up for about 93% of successful data breaches.

Other common types of social engineering attacks

Apart from phishing, there are many more types of social engineering attacks that trick many around the globe on a daily basis. Here they are:

 

  • Watering hole: This is a common type of attack being used by many hackers around the globe for a long time. A watering hole attack refers to injecting malicious code to a website that is often visited by the victim/s. Once the victim visits the website, a backdoor trojan gets installed automatically into his/her computer.
  • Whaling attack: A whaling attack is very similar to a phishing attack except for one thing. The victims are generally someone of significance like an executive of a large corporation. Whaling requires the attacker to show the hidden wordsmith within and carefully draft a fraudulent email just like in a phishing attack.
  • Pretexting: Refers to the attacker claiming to be someone else to obtain information. Attackers that become good at pretexting even try to manipulate victims into taking actions that can compromise the entire system from within the organization.
  • Tailgating: Tailgating involves the attacker to seek entry to a restricted area without authorization. A typical scenario would be the attacker dressed as a delivery guy that enters the building behind an employee.

Precautions you can take

Reading the above you know what is social engineering as well as how important it is to understand if you wish to become an ethical hacker. Moreover, you may have also noticed how only a few social engineering tools are required to successfully execute an attack.

It’s time to take the necessary precautions to lower the chances of a virus entering our system.

An individual can minimize the risk of being attacked by:

  • Start recognizing that an offer promising you to move abroad or winning a jackpot is obviously fake
  • Delete any requests that ask you to give your personal information.
  • Look at your email program’s setting, locate spam filters, and set them on high. 
  • Keep your operating system updated on your computer as well as your smartphone
  • Install antivirus, spam filters, as well as firewalls in your computer and mobile devices. 

An organization can take these precautionary steps:

  • Perform regular and unannounced security-firework check
  • Make employees undergo proper training that will help them defend against hacker
  • Establish strict security policies and protocols. For example, outside USB devices are not allowed inside the office. 
  • Use a proper waste management system ensuring that the hackers do not get their hands of used hard drives. 
  • Establish trusted security frameworks for staff, employees, as well as personnel. 

Reasons to learn Ethical Hacking

Ethical hacking has been attracting many eyes recently and for good reasons. There are many advantages of ethical hacking as a career – an immense amount of opportunities and growth scope as well as the mystery surrounding the word “hacking” is intriguing, to say the least. 

In addition to the above, there are many more reasons to learn ethical hacking but before we dive into them.

Let’s have an introduction to ethical hacking

Well, you might know that hacking is illegal. Ethical hacking is simply hacking but without any malicious intentions like stealing or deleting data. 

Ethical hacking involves using the methods of hacking to penetrate into a system, find security vulnerabilities, and report them back to the authorities so that they can be improved upon. 

While both ethical and unethical hacking is done by hackers, ethical hackers typically operate with proper authorization as well as to protect the system rather than exploiting it.

 

Importance of ethical hacking

If you ever get the chance to learn cybersecurity, you will understand the importance of ethical hackers in this digital world. 

Cybersecurity is a specialization in the field of ethical hacking and refers to protecting the security of a system against hacking. 

Hackers are experts in programming languages and know how to play around the security of software with just their fingertips. Moreover, the growth of the digital world has made it important to protect ourselves from not just the physical but also the cyber threats

Just take a good look around.

Every device surrounding you is a potential target for a hacker. They can extract sensitive information, spread certain agendas as well as blackmail for ransom.

Ethical hackers play a huge role in protecting your data from hackers that try to attack you in cyberspace. They are also vital in protecting valuable data of businesses and organizations. 

Now let us take a look at the advantages of ethical hacking

 

Advantages of ethical hacking

If anyone takes time and learn ethical hacking, they can enjoy some of the advantages associated with it. 

Develop a hacker’s mindset

As mentioned before, ethical hacking is basically hacking just legally. As a result, to learn ethical hacking one would have to learn how to hack. 

Consequently, one ends up developing the mindset of a hacker. This is important as it helps you stay calm even while you are under attack. 

As Sun Tzu once said, “If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.”

Meaning that if you are trying to make a relating field to ethical hacking as a career, like IT fields, learning ethical hacking can really prove to be helpful. 

Career scope in ethical hacking

It is estimates that India currently requires 77,000 Ethical Hackers but is creating only 15,000 per year. Moreover, a recent study conducted by the Bureau of labor statistics shows that there are around 300,000 job opportunities for ethical hackers. 

Information is one of the, if not, the most valuable assets of any organization. As a result, they pay specialists who can protect this information really well. 

How much you ask?

With the right amount of qualification and experience, an ethical hacker can earn up to an average of INR 15 lakhs per annum!

Moreover, you can be sure that if you took the extra step like learn cybersecurity and become an expert in that, you will be paid much more. 

Ethical hacking as a career equals many benefits

Apart from the incredible salary and job opportunities, there are other job advantages of ethical hacking:

1. Not so boring job 

Ethical hacking as a career may seem like spending hours upon hours sitting behind a computer and inputting codes. But the reality is much different. 

The old threats evolve into new ones with unknown nature or intent. Black hat hackers constantly try to penetrate through your security, making you brainstorm frequently in the hopes of stopping them. 

A typical job day of an ethical hacker is filled with cyber-thrill. Despite being a technical field, ethical hacking as a career requires a lot of creativity. 

 

2. Global recognition

To become an expert in ethical hacking, you will need to gain a CEH certification. This certification holds incredible value in the realm of ethical hacking. 

Moreover, it is a globally recognized certification that requires you to learn the various technical and practical skills such as footprinting, scanning, hacking into a network, and much more. 

Once you start to learn ethical hacking and set out to become a certified ethical hacker, not only will you possess skills valuable to the top organizations but also a qualification that is recognized by the world. 

 

3. Get to travel frequently

The number of cyber-threats far outweighs the number of ethical hackers produced every year. However bad this new maybe, it grants one of the biggest advantages of ethical hacking to those who learn it.

The opportunity to travel… a lot!!! 

Big organizations might call for your help and sponsor all your travel expenses. Pursuing ethical hacking as a career and becoming an expert in it comes with the chance of getting a lifetime travel-pass. 

4. Work for the biggest companies

Whether you believe it or not, but one of the fastest ways to work for companies like Google, Facebook, and even Netflix. 

Due to the lack of professionals, ethical hackers are always high in demand. A simple Google search of “Facebook Jobs” or any other fortune 500 companies is sufficient to know that they are always in a lookout for a highly-skilled hacker. 

 

Increasing your value as an employee

If you are a professional in the field of IT then an amazing way to increase your value as well as increase your salary is to learn ethical hacking.

Understanding a hacker’s mindset and the techniques that might have been used can save a lot of money for your organization. As a result, it makes you a more valuable asset. One that knows how to do his/her job as well as protect the system against smaller attacks. 

The ones who work more than they are paid for will always be earning more than those who don’t

In addition to all of the above, you also have the ability to not get bounded by a particular industry. Due to literally every organization needing an ethical hacker, you will have the freedom to work in any industry. 

 

From working for Netflix to working for a major fashion brand such as Nike, an ethical hacker is needed by all of them. 

 

How to Hack a WiFi Network : Your Step by Step Guide

Do you ever wonder if someone has been using the internet that you pay for? Leaving aside that one friend who comes to your house just to use your WiFi, someone else might have access to your WiFi network. Do you people learn how to hack and get into other networks and systems. 

That someone probably had an introduction to ethical hacking and took his/her first step to become an ethical hacker

In other words, if you wish to get into the world of ethical hacking, the first practical step you can take is to know how to hack into a WiFi.

If someone knows how to hack into your WiFi chances are that they can even compromise the entire computer network security. When that happens you’ll get eager to learn cybersecurity and its importance

But that’s for some other day. For today, let us learn how to become the hacker

become a certified ethical hacker and learn how to hack

 

Accessing a wireless network

As you may know that a wireless network is a network that is connected without using any wires. These are the networks that use radio waves to link computers and other devices together. 

To access these networks you’ll need:

  • A device that has wireless-network enabled (laptop, smartphone, etc.)
  • The device as well as you will need to be within the transmission radius of a wireless network access point (a WiFi router)
  • If the network isn’t password protected then you wouldn’t need to do anything further to gain access except click on it. It was asking to get hacked.
  • But if the network is password protected like most, then you’ll need its password to gain access. 

 

Wireless Network Authentication WEP & WPA

There are many authentication techniques used in various wireless network devices. These include: WEP, WPA, WPA2, WPA3, WPA2 + AES, WPA + AES, WPA + TKIP/AES, WPA + TKIP, and more

WEP and WPA are two of the most commonly used authentication techniques in a wireless network. Understanding these two is good for building a solid foundation before learning how to hack into a wireless network. 

It will also help you gather the required information regarding the access point.

 

accessing a wireless network

 

WEP 

WEP (Wired Equivalent Privacy) is a security algorithm for IEEE 802. It was developed with the intention to overcome the data confidentiality issues with the traditional wired connection. It gave better data protection by encrypting the data transmitted to avoid eavesdropping. 

WEP authentication works using two methods:

  • Open System Authentication (OSA) – OSA helps you gain access to any WEP network as well as receive files that aren’t encrypted
  • Shared Key Authentication (SKA) – SKA allows a computer equipped with a wireless modem to gain full access to any WEP network and exchange both encrypted and unencrypted data.

WPA

The weaknesses found in WEP led to the development of Wi-Fi Protected Access. WPA became the security standard for computing devices with wireless internet connections. 

WPA encrypts data on 802.11 WLANs. In addition to this, instead of using the 24-bits that WEP uses, WAP uses 48bits that gives it higher initial values. However, WPA has been reported to get affected by a DDoS attack many times. 

General types of attacks 

  • Man-in-the-middle attack : This refers to intercepting the communication between two individuals to steal data.
  • Denial of service (DDoS) : To do this, you have to overwhelm the network with traffic. As a result, it cannot fulfill any requests, leaving the system unusable
  • Sniffing : It involves intercepting data packets as they are transmitted over a network.

In addition to the above, there are various types of attacks that can compromise computer network security that can be useful in both types of hacking

Understanding these attacks will not only help you understand how to hack into a network but also learn cybersecurity. Moreover, it will also help you become an ethical hacker.

 

Tools used for hacking wireless networks  

To be able to properly use and understand these tools, we recommend you develop a solid ethical hacking foundation as well as learn a few programming languages

 

programming languages to learn how to hack

 

Here’s a list of some of the most popular tools used to hamper computer network security:

 

How to hack a wireless network

Finally, let’s get into the step by step tutorial to decode the stored wireless network passwords. 

  1. Firstly, download Cain & Abel from the provided link
  2. Secondly, ensure that you are in the range of a network that you wish to hack and try and connect.
  3. Open Cain & Abel
  4. Select the “Decoders” tab 
  5. From the navigation menu select “Wireless Passwords”
  6. Tap on the plus sign (+) button
  7. The decoder will show encryption type, SSID and the password that was once used to access the network.

 

how to hack a wireless network

 

Securing wireless networks

Now that you know how to hack a WiFi network, it’s time to know about a few steps you can take to avoid someone hacking your WiFi. After all, you cannot become an ethical hacker without knowing how to hack and how to prevent a hack. 

  • Change the default passwords that come with the hardware
  • Enable authentication mechanism
  • Allowing only registered MAC addresses can restrict Access to the network.
  • Using strong WEP and WPA-PSK keys as well as passwords with a combination of symbols, number and characters can reduce the chance of the keys being cracked by the use of a dictionary and brute force attacks
  • Firewall Software can help reduce unauthorized access

 

 

Become an ethical hacker and learn how to hack

What is Footprinting in Ethical Hacking?

If you ever wondered about how to become an ethical hacker then you need to first understand what is Footprinting in ethical hacking.

Think of footprinting as looking for information in each and every place possible. By definition, footprinting is the process of gathering as much information as possible about the target system. It is performed to find ways to penetrate the system.

But footprinting is something that you cannot understand without proper introduction to ethical hacking. So here it is.

Ethical hacking is the process of finding vulnerabilities in the security of a system and then reporting them to the authorities so that they can be improved upon. 

While ethical hacking is technically hacking, ethical hackers aren’t exactly doing anything illegal. Instead, they help organizations tremendously and for this reason, they are paid well too

So if you are thinking about taking up courses or want to learn ethical hacking online, there has never been a better time to do both.

 

Ethical hacking course

 

Importance of footprinting

Footprinting in ethical hacking is very important as it is the first phase of ethical or unethical hacking. If the hacker does not gather enough information about the system, he/she wouldn’t know enough about it. As a result, the hacker would have no clue about what type of vulnerabilities can be found and what would be a suitable attack to perform.  

In other words, no matter if the hacker knows all the programming languages and is incredibly skilful, without footprinting he/she would be in the dark while implementing those skills in an attack.

Footprinting helps with the following things:

  • Understand security posture : The data gathered will help you understand the posture of the security better. For example, you’ll have details regarding the firewall as well as security configurations. 
  • Identify weaknesses : Footprinting can help you identify vulnerabilities, potential threats as well as the loopholes present in the system. 
  • Reduces attacks : Once the vulnerabilities are identified, it can help prevent any future threats.  
  • Laying the foundation for an attack : The data collected can help find the weak spots and launch attacks. 
  • Draw a network map : Footprinting can also help recognise the network of the target system and identify topology, trusted routers, presence of server and other information.

 

 

What is footprinting

 

Objectives of Footprinting

Now that you have gotten an introduction to ethical hacking and know the importance of footprinting in ethical hacking, it is time to know about the objectives of footprinting.

Because without knowing the objectives of each step in hacking, you would always be a few steps short to become an ethical hacker

There are three main objectives of footprinting.

1. Collecting Network information

This includes:

  • Domain name 
  • Internal domain names 
  • IP addresses of the reachable systems 
  • Rogue websites/private websites within the domain 
  • Access Control Mechanisms 
  • Protocols used 
  • Existing VPNs 
  • Analog and digital telephone numbers 
  • Authentication mechanisms and system enumeration

2. Collecting System Information

This includes:

  • Users and group names
  • System banners
  • Routing tables 
  • Routing protocols it is using 
  • SNMP information 
  • System architecture 
  • Operating system used 
  • Remote system type 
  • Usernames and passwords

3. Collecting Organisations’ Information

This includes: 

  • Employee details
  • Organisation’s website
  • Company directory
  • Local details
  • Address and phone numbers
  • Comments in HTML Source code within an organisation’s website
  • Security policies implemented
  • Web server links relevant to the organisation
  • News articles and press release

 

Types of footprinting

There are two types of footprinting:

  1. Active : Refers to gathering information by directly getting in touch with the target. Active footprints can be created by sending phishing emails as well as user consciously sharing his/her data.
  2. Passive : Contrary to the above is passive footprinting. It is done without the hacker directly getting in touch with the target system. This can be achieved by something as simple as reading information on the internet. 

What is footprinting

 

 

How to Footprint in Ethical Hacking?

Knowing the how-to and what-to of footprinting in ethical hacking can really help you better understand how to become an ethical hacker and actually become one.

So how do you perform footprinting

Let us take a look at some of the sources and tools used for footprinting.

 

Information sources

These are some of the sources which you can use to gather information regarding a target system: 

  1. Company’s website : The websites are intended to tell the customers about the organisation but hackers can use them to gain a lot of information. They contain e-mail addresses, employee names, branch office locations as well as technologies the organisation uses.
  2. Social Media : You can easily get to know about someone because people today tend to post everything about them on social media platforms. 
  3. Archive.org : Here’s a website that shows the history or older versions of all the other websites. You can use the Wayback machine, a built-in free to use tool to collect information that once existed on the website.
  4. Job postings : Companies can sometimes provide confidential data on job posting websites like Indeed and MonsterIndia. Hackers can leverage this information to plan their attack.
  5. Google hacking : As you may know, Google contains a tremendous amount of data. But did you know that Google has the ability to do some powerful searches as well. You can collect sensitive information by using Google’s built-in functions.  

Some of the common commands are “intitle,” “inurlt,” “allinurl,” and “filetype.” You can even use the Google Hacking Database (GHDB) like Exploit DB, and Hackers Online Club

Tools

  • Whois : One of the most renowned and common tools that can be used for website footprinting. Using Whois, you can gather information like the domain name, email-id as well as domain owner’s details. 
  • NeoTrace : Can gather path information between you and the remote site as well as the information on each node. 
  • Harvester : This is a tool that can help you extract information like email addresses as well as the subdomains of a target.
  • Metagoofil : This is a tool that makes it easy to gather the information that the company already made public
  • Netifera :Yet another website footprinting tool that can be used to collect information like IP address, the Programming language used in the development, the number of websites hosted, DNS. 

In addition to the above, some other footprinting that you can use include Nslookup, Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA), Regional Institute Registries (RIRs), and Traceroute.

 

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