Hackers are the face of cybercrime, globally cybercrime is a multi-billion dollar business. However, the money doesn’t just come from illegal activity. Many hackers can make a good living without having to break the law. An ethical hacker otherwise known as a white-hat hacker is someone that makes money by helping companies improve their security, actively hacking into the company and helping them fix the mistake that allowed them to hack into the company in the first place. One of the best things you can learn if you’re interested in hacking computers is how to code.  In this article, we outline why coding is important for being a good hacker.

Knowing how to code isn’t a prerequisite for learning how to hack computers. If you’re interested in learning you don’t need to learn how to code before you can get started, however, there are many situations where having a solid understanding of coding is useful.

One reason you need to learn how to code as a hacker is so you can modify scripts that you will use to hack into different systems. Especially as a beginner you’re mostly going to be using automated tools like Nmap, Metasploit, burp suite or programming scripts that were created by other people. This is because most of the new hackers don’t have an in-depth understanding of how the attacks work and are unable to write their own computer scripts to automate the attacks themselves. Therefore, having a good enough understanding of coding to the point that you can understand and edit other people’s computer scripts is very useful for a beginner. One source if you’re looking for pre-made scripts that you can use to get started hacking computers is exploit-DB. This is a database maintained by offensive security that has a bunch of pre-made scripts for hacking.

The second reason you want to learn how to code is so that you can create your own custom scripts. Generally, this will be more useful once you have more experience hacking computers because you will need to understand exactly what you need to tell the computer to do.

Once you master this knowledge it’s useful to know how to create your own scripts that do exactly what you need and want them to do. If you’re interested in learning this, there are a lot of good courses and academies that can get you started writing scripts in many different programming languages on hacking computers. In addition to this, you can also search on youtube to see other walkthroughs of people writing their own scripts.

Thirdly, understanding programming (the creation of full computer programs) is useful in understanding different types of cyberattacks. So attacks like SQL injections, cross-site scripting or command line injection all use lines of code as their attack vector. If you have a good understanding of languages like Javascript, SQL, Powershell and Bash it can be very useful.

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Nikoleta Yanakieva Editor at DevStyleR International