Recently, it has become commonplace to witness major data breaches and DDoS attacks hitting large companies; like Microsoft. From hacker groups such as ‘The Lizard Squad’ and “Hacktivists” like Anonymous.
Although it may seem like these attacks came out of nowhere, hacking dates back to the 70’s; even prior to computers becoming a household item.
1970’s – Phreaking
Phreaking was the act of using a plastic toy whistle (from boxes of Cap’n Crunch) to produce a 2600 hertz tone into a phone receiver; tricking the AT&T phone system into making free calls.
Because AT&T’s system was controlled by tones, this particular frequency signaled that a trunk line was ready and available to route to the next phone. This practice was made popular by John Draper aka “Captain Crunch”.
1980’s to the 1990’s – The ‘Morris’ Worm
Robert Morris became infamous in 1989 because he created a self-replicating virus that spread so quickly, it shut down most of the internet. To put this in perspective, this same methodology is still used today to perpetrate Denial of Service (DoS) attacks.
This served as a wake-up call to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) who pushed the Software Engineering Institute (SEI) to create the ‘CERT Division‘ (Computer Emergency Response Teams). This group was comprised of Cybersecurity experts with a common goal of spreading awareness about security issues across the internet and preventing future incidents
Frequently Asked Questions. (n.d.). Retrieved November 29, 2016, from https://www.us-cert.gov/faq
Julian, T. (2014). Defining Moments in the History of Cyber-Security. Retrieved November 29, 2016, from http://www.infosecurity-magazine.com/opinions/the-history-of-cybersecurity/
“Antivirus Software.” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, n.d. Web. 29 Nov. 2016.