Ethics of Hacking Contests

Normally, hacking has been associated with negativity both in literature and application. However, the concept of hacking is in itself not unethical. Nonetheless, the misuse of hacking in inflicting harm on others instead of helping them is a concern in today’s society. The negative reputation associated with hacking cannot be a yardstick to ascertain the morality of the concept. Indeed, hacking is neither illegal nor immoral when used in the right way to help others and not cause harm to human wellbeing. It is only immoral when the act is committed with an intention of causing harm to others while accruing benefits to the perpetrator (Radziwill et al, 2015). In the example given, ACME Security challenges hackers to hack its system. The first person to hack the system is going to be declared the winner of the contest. On face value, the contest bears no wrongdoing because the company allows for the hacking to take place and even has prior information regarding the hacking attempts. In addition, the company allows and even encourages people to hack its system as a test of its security. In view of this event, the repercussions of the hacking contest may render the event ethical in the long run. Ultimately, the hacking contest, although beneficial to both hackers and the company, is largely unethical as it invokes weaknesses across different technological platforms.

There are three different types of hackers based on their intentions and implications. The black-hat hacker is one that is malicious in intent and hacks to attain personal gratification. Normally, these types of hackers do so to disrupt the normal operations with intended benefits for self. Black-hat hacking is out rightly immoral for the ill intent it assumes. On the other extreme is a white-hat hacker whose intent of hacking is usually good. A very good example of this type of hacker is the one that wins in the ACME contest. Normally, they operate under the permission of the host company, attempting to test the company’s resilience to security threats. The fact that this type of hacking is beneficial to the two parties renders it moral. In the third category is the gray-hat hacker that lies betwe

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