NewsHour: Internet Security
The Digital Divide
Computers and the gender gap
Businesses team up with schools to put computers in the classroom
Technology in the next century
Why do teenagers hack? It's hard to say.
Computers and the Internet have become ways of life for almost every American. It is a part of nearly every facet of our modern lives. Small mom and pop businesses to giant corporations rely on it daily. The mere inkling that a fifteen-year-old with the right knowledge and tools has the power to disrupt this transference of knowledge on a scale grand is simply mind boggling.
The thrill of power
Yet that is the very idea
that drives many hackers. The idea that they have the power to change
and control the Internet as they see fit acts as both their drive and
The power of hacking didn't really hit me until a few weeks ago. We were in the school library working on the computers and one of my friends asked me for my e-mail address so I gave it to him. By the end of the class period he had somehow logged in to my e-mail and changed my password, though he did tell me what he changed it to and how to change it back.
The thing that really made me rethink the safety of the Internet wasn't the act itself, it was how fast and easy it was for him to do it. He also informed me that hotmail has an abundance of loopholes and backdoors available to hackers.
could be a hacker
In a teenage society things are not always the way they appear on the outside. The usual public image of a "hacker," or even a computer buff, is a quiet individual who isn't as involved in sports or activities as the average student.
In some cases this may be
true, but the facts are that teens from all different walks of life
take part in this cyber activity. The students I know personally that
have the means and knowledge to commit such acts are involved in sports
and other extracurricular activities. And their numbers are growing
larger every day.
Teens who don't hack aren't sure what to think about those who do. The majority believes hackers should have better things to do with their time than to tinker around on computers trying to cause destruction or tap into someone's personal files.
On the other hand, there are others who envy hackers because they have skills and knowledge that seem so unobtainable, so far from what the rest of us are able to do. There are also aspects of hacking that are attractive: seeing movies before they even come out in the theater or downloading music before it's out on CD for free.
Dealing with hackers
Hacking is a very real problem
that will only grow larger and become
more popular among the teenage community. Our society needs to recognize
this problem and figure out how to convince teens not to seek out cyber
The majority of teens have absolutely no interest in hacking. Though, there will always be those who thirst for the power associated with hacking, and won't rest until they have experienced it.
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