Can I Learn Hacking at Home?

Indeed! With online learning becoming popular, one can easily learn hacking at home. Just make sure you are referring to ethical hacking and not malicious hacking. There is a very fine line between these two terms. Generally, hacking refers to gaining access to systems, networks, and other digital assets of an organization and identifying vulnerabilities and loopholes. The intent of hacking is what makes all the difference. In ethical hacking, people hack the systems with the permission of the authorized person and identify loopholes to fix them before they can be exploited. Malicious hackers, on the other hand, gain unauthorized access and compromise the sensitive data of an organization for their personal gain. So, when you want to learn ethical hacking, you will find a number of resources online. Ethical hacking for beginners is the popular term people search for when they are seeking the best course available online.

However, are courses the only option to learn ethical hacking at home? Well, there are other options too. Read on to find out and understand why ethical hacking should be your preferred career choice.

Steps to Learn Ethical Hacking at Home

Ethical Hacking is a popular career choice these days. Owing to the lack of skilled professionals in this field, companies are ready to pay higher salaries for those who can strengthen their defenses against any form of data breach or cyber-attacks. This is the reason many are exploring their skills in ethical hacking and trying to build a strong foundation in this domain through various ways. Let us look at some of the top options for learning ethical hacking at home.

Online Courses – Our recommendation would be to enroll in an instructor-led training course that helps you develop job-ready skills. By learning from industry experts through live virtual classes, you will get a physical classroom-like experience to grasp the concepts better. There are self-paced courses as well if you can learn through pre-recorded videos. Now if ethical hacking is entirely new to you, then you may not be able to select the right online course. In this case, it is better to initially enroll in a free online course.

Simplilearn’s Ethical Hacking for Beginners free course is something you can rely on. Throughout its comprehensive 3 hours of training, you will learn many concepts like cryptography, Linux and database administration, trojans, backdoors, and countermeasures, IDS firewalls, honeypots, network packet analysis, advanced log management, and mobile and web technologies.

Blogs – The webosphere encompasses hundreds of blogs on ethical hacking and cybersecurity. While some are clear leaders in the industry, others are earning a reputation and improving their content in information security. Some of the top blogs you can follow are:

  • Dan Kaminsky’s Blog
  • Elie Bursztein
  • Graham Cluley
  • Hacking Articles by Raj Chandel
  • Marco Ramili’s Blog
  • TaoSecurity

Books – Even in this digital age, we can’t ignore the importance of books. Some people understand the ethical hacking concepts through books rather than following online tutorials. So, if you are someone who learns faster through books, then you can dive into these:

  • The Basics of Hacking and Penetration Testing by Patrick Engebretson
  • Penetration Testing – A Hands-On Introduction to Hacking by Georgia Weidman
  • Hacking: Computer Hacking, Security Testing, Penetration Testing, and Basic Security by Gary Hall
  • The Hardware Hacker: Adventures in Making and Breaking Hardware by Andre Huang

Bug Bounty Programs –  Bug bounties refer to the sum of money offered by companies to those people who can identify software bugs related to security vulnerabilities. This cash reward program requires participants to hack the systems ethically and find out the loopholes. Companies like Apple, Microsoft, Google, and more offer lucrative sums for those who can identify a major bug in their applications. Participating in such programs means learning ethical hacking through practice and applying the skills you have gained through courses or books. To get started, you can work on EC-Council’s Bug Bounty Program to gain access to real-world applications, identify security vulnerabilities in them, and mitigate the vulnerability.

Earn an industry-recognized certification – Cybersecurity is of utmost importance for companies these days, and there are a couple of institutes that offer certifications in this domain to help professionals benchmark their ethical hacking skills. EC-Council’s Ethical Hacker Certification (CEH) is one of the best in the market but requires you to have at least 5 years of experience before taking the exam. If you have less experience, you can take CompTIA Pen Test+, GIAC Penetration Tester, and Foundstone Ultimate hacking.

Bottom Line

Not everyone can become a successful ethical hacker and beat the black-hat hackers in their own game. Your interest and passion for the field are what required to get ahead and apply the skills you gain through various modes of learning. You may wonder if learning ethical hacking at home is counted as formal training or not when appearing for interviews. Well, employers do need something that can validate your ethical hacking skills. So, earning a certificate, participating in bug bounty programs, or solving some industry projects can help you demonstrate your practical skills in front of employers. The time is ripe to take up an ethical hacking training course and land a high-paying job.