A sneak-peek into hackers’ world
With the mystery surrounding hackers and the transactions taking place on the dark web, one is often intrigued by the question, how do hackers get paid?
"We have to look past the American and western standards of what the typical international hacker's lifestyle looks like," says Alan Webber, research director for innovation and transformation at IDC. "How people live in other parts of the world is already very different, and this just further translates to how the hackers overseas may live."
We have to take a step back and observe who they really are in order to find the answer. Several movies have made the general perception that they look for one big score before vanishing, but that is far from reality. The hacker, in the real world, can probably be someone who has a day job, perhaps even in the cyber security sector.
"There are hackers that are on the white hat side - as in trying to keep the bad guys at bay - and then there are those who are the gray hat guys, who may work for a security firm, and they may frequent the markets of the dark web, but to buy the malware so they can reverse engineer it," explains Stephen Coty, director of threat research at Alert Logic. "Then there are the black hat guys who try to make money from hacking including the stealing of data."
It needs to be mentioned here that bitcoin, with its anonymity feature, has made the way for an even more secure avenue for cyber criminals, thereby making it a preferred choice among the hacking community.
"It all depends on the experience of the person and their level of trust, but a lot of these new services create a data path that is increasingly untraceable," says Coty. "Bitcoin fills the void very nicely."