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4 Hacking Documentaries You Need To Watch

Hacking is one of those subjects that everybody talks about yet few people truly understand. Is hacking inherently malicious? Is there a difference between a hacker and a cracker? For as long as information technology has existed, certain people have tried to abuse it.

These are four hacking documentaries you need to watch -

ZeroDays (2016) (Amazon) – This documentary paints a sobering portrait of just how vulnerable the world is to state sponsored cyber-attacks on Critical National Infrastructure. It focuses on Stuxnet, the joint USA and Israeli cyber attack on Iran’s nuclear enrichment programme, but also looks wider at the military, geopolitical, social and economic impacts of cyber warfare now and in the future. It provides a very good overview of the state sponsored threat source who hack for economic, political and military advantage.

The Secret History Of Hacking (2001) (YouTube) – This documentary (made 15 years earlier and shows how far we have come in just 15 years) provides an interesting introduction to the founding fathers of hacking. “Captain Crunch” (aka John Draper) who started a culture of making free phone calls through using a free cereal box whistle. The term “Social Engineering” originated where phone phreakers cold called telephone company employees and convinced them to give them privileged access. The documentary provide a good overview of the amateur\hobbyist hacker & cracker threat source, who hack for the fun and just the challenge of hacking.

Citizenfour (2014) (YouTube) - "Citizenfour" tells the story of Edward Snowden's leak of NSA documents. Those documents reveal how the US government, with the cooperation of major telecom and internet companies, has been spying on electronic communications around the world. Snowden is an excellent example of the malicious insider threat source, who hack or steal information for ideological reasons.

How Hackers Changed The World The Anonymous Documentary (YouTube) – An engaging documentary going inside the complex network and history of Anonymous, the radical online 'hacktivist' collective, using interviews with members, writers and academics. Depending on your point of view, the hackers' collective Anonymous is either a freedom-fighting group or a bunch of cyber terrorists. The documentary provides an example of the hacktivist type threat source, who hack or steal information for ideological reasons.

Questions your C-Suite should ask your CISO – Who is most likely to be hacking us? What is their capability and motivation?

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