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Essential Guide to Becoming an Ethical Hacker



ethical hacker

Those with a deep interest in problem-solving, IT security, as well as communication, ethical hacking is a sound career choice. Plus, it’s a hot job and many organizations are in search of geniuses to find loopholes in their security systems. The median salary of a certified ethical hacker is $90k per year. If this career entices you and you’re really interested in becoming an ethical hacker, this guide spills all the tea.

Understanding the Role of an Ethical Hacker

First things, first, this role is not everyone’s cup of tea. Your job isn’t to catch the bad guys once you step into ethical hacking. There’s much more to it. An ethical hacker is a Computer Security Expert. His job is to specialize in penetration testing along with other methods of testing. They ensure that the organization’s infrastructure is guarded against potential hacks. 

Basically, they do the same work as hackers but for the good of the organization, not to exploit them or launch attacks. They also provide consultancy services and give recommendations about vulnerabilities. They do a better job of protecting your devices and network than the security suite that comes with Spectrum Internet packages and other Internet services in general.

Becoming an Ethical Hacker

Anyone who has decided to become an ethical hacker, this is all the information you need to start your journey:

Mandatory Prerequisite Knowledge

You can’t just enter this field without some perquisites. This is a field of IT security and background information is mandatory. These are some areas you must be well-versed in:

  • Programming skills
  • Networking
  • Database
  • Windows and Linux Operating Systems

Get Education

One can definitely become a hacker through self-learning. But, if you would like to be recruited by big organizations such as Apple or Google and even government agencies, having the right academic qualifications is pertinent.

At the very least, you will need a bachelor’s degree in Cybersecurity, Computer Science, or any other field in IT.

Get a Certified  

To boost your ethical hacking skills, obtain a certification. These certifications add weight to your resume and increase the chances of getting selected for a role.

You can take certifications at your own time. Wondering what are the best certifications for ethical hacking? Go for any other these or other demanding ones:

  • GIAC Penetration Tester
  • Certified ethical hacking
  • Certified penetration testing consultant
  • Foundstone ultimate hacking
  • Offensive security credited personal

Take the Free Ethical Hacking Courses

For self-learning, you can always enroll in free ethical hacking courses. This is recommended for those who want to test the waters to see if ethical hacking is something they can do. Free courses aren’t as juicy as paid ones but they are still valuable for anyone who wants a beginner’s level of knowledge.  

Work on Your Creative Thinking Abilities

 A successful ethnical hacker is the one who is street smart. After learning hacking skills, it’s time to refine your creative thinking abilities.

If you dig up a little history of established hackers, you will come to know they were artists, engineers, and philosophers. A hacker has to balance between work, play, science, as well as art. To build some creative thinking abilities, start reading science fiction. You may also attend science fiction conventions.

Some hackers take a keen interest in martial arts. Why? Because the kind of mental discipline requires in martial arts is similar to what’s mandatory in hacking.

Become a Problem Solver

Ethical hackers are basically problem solvers. They identify the problem, come up with a solution, and make it known to the public. Most hackers don’t give away all their creative products but the ones who do earn the highest respect of their peers.

Tap into These Resources

There’s a world of useful resources you can tap into. Start with a simple Google search and you will come across many how-to tutorials. Check Amazon for bestselling books on ethical hacking.

Tools like Firesheep and Droidsheps are useful resources as well. They let you hack your online accounts via Wi-Fi. Make sure you don’t end up using these tools for hacking other people’s accounts otherwise, you can land in legal troubles.

Above All, Stay Legal

After becoming a successful ethical hacker, you must pledge to true to your profession. Don’t ever attack, intrude or invade anyone’s network without their permission.

Even if illegal activities don’t lead to a conviction, engaging in such acts can kill your career. Many government jobs require passing a polygraph test. Organizations also run a background check. One past mistake can cost you an amazing career opportunity. Therefore, be extra careful.

Common Roles for Hackers

An ethical hacker can get employed as an Information Security Analyst, Cyber Security Engineer, Penetration Tester, Security Engineer, Security Analyst, Information Security Manager, and many other roles.


Ethical hacking is an esteemed career choice. Although this guide will help you get started, you must stay connect with other ethical hackers to guide you along the road. You are likely to come across bumps throughout the journey. When that happens, it’s good to have a mentor you can trust just like you can trust Spectrum customer service whenever you encounter a technical problem in your network.  

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