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February 2003

Hacking in 2003: Examining this year's hacking techniques

Hacking into a Woman's Heart On a recent Saturday night, my girlfriend and I were perched at the bar waiting for our table when we overheard a "hacker" trying to impress his date. He was a man in his early 40s, wearing a faded purple oxford shirt with a paisley lining over a maroon turtleneck. With each drag of his Marlboro, he exposed his gapped and rotting smile. The object of his attention was a moderately attractive woman who looked as bored as George Bush at a physics lecture. Despite his nerdy confidence, he probably sensed that things weren't going well. To jumpstart the conversation, he launched into a story about his hacking prowess. This immediately caught my attention. Over the din, I caught a few gems from his boasts. "I've hacked a high school just to see if I could do it without leaving any tracks. And I've hacked a few friends' Web pages just for fun. I was just messing around with them." "Hardly anyone knows you can hack Microsoft," he said, raising the tempo of his bragging. "I could make a lot of money hacking....

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