MadSci Network: Computer Science

Re: How are web pages hacked?

Date: Thu Jun 22 15:28:09 2000
Posted By: Ben Saitz, Director of Ad Operations
Area of science: Computer Science
ID: 960576073.Cs

There are several ways a site can be "hacked."

First: Hackers can try and do little more than crash the site.  This just 
crashes the server and can be done using one of several mathods.  These 
methods often perform some type of "flood" of bad/orphan requests, which 
locks the server up trying to reply to all of these.  This is what 
happened to eBay and Yahoo! recently.

Second: Hackers can get a password or hack their way past a password 
prompt and then have access to files/databases/etc which they can 
compromise.  There are programs to guess passwords, as well as trojan 
horse programs hackers use to get users to divulge their passwords.  AOL 
is often the victim of trojan horses - programs which listen when users 
enter passwords and then send that data back to the hackers.

Third: Hackers can break past security measures and alter pages on a given 
server.  This happens most often to corporations by hackers with a social 

Fourth: A hacker can find a way to dial into a companies private network, 
by using a dial-up line, and then accessing the network as a regular 
employee.  This is very dangerous, as all corporate files are now 

Hope this reading is informative, but doesn't give you any naughty 
ideas...   ;-)

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