Whenever news comes in about some sort of data breach or hacked service, we’re often treated with pictures of the assumed perpetrators and how their office (bedroom? garage?) looks. Mentatul managed to get in touch with some of these unique people. They were happy that somebody is interested in their private lives and difficult working conditions.
Let us begin with Paul, a young man from Edinburgh who started hacking banks when he was 15 years old.
We asked Paul about why he decided to become a hacker and about his daily routine:
“I knew I am destined to be a hacker when I realized that simply by looking at a computer screen I could see zeros and ones fly out of it, along with words such as “password”, “identity theft” and “data security”. I then turned to the Hacker Fraternity and they told me only precious few have this talent, which they call The Gift. They told me I’m a natural.”
“But even with such talent, my job is very difficult. I always have to dress in a menacing yet stylish outfit. Wearing gloves makes typing difficult. The sunglasses force me to crank the screen brightness for my laptop all the way to the max. It seriously impacts battery life.”
Another interesting story is that of m4~, a housewife from Kansas who started hacking out of boredom.
“Watching cats and dogs videos on Facebook gets old after a while, so I took a course in hacking. Suddenly, whenever I was looking at computer screens, a blue mist enveloped me, and I could see passwords fly through it. After winning a recipe website hacking contest, the Hacker Fraternity awarded me with this special hoodie that makes me disappear when I’m hacking. The dramatic effect is important for online success. The only problem is that my son got scared a couple of times when he saw mommy disappear in a dark blue haze when she turned on her laptop.”
And then there’s Ulf, the boy-wonder from Switzerland who makes a living by stealing Bitcoins from rich.
“One day I found this special magnet that attracts Bitcoin straight from the wireless networks of the rich. During the usual two-hour ride in my black van throughout the priciest neighborhoods in central Switzerland, I make about $4000.”
Through our correspondent in New Zealand we got to know The Grewsome Crew, two siblings from Auckland. We asked them to tell us if they know of any good hackers that are able to do their job without this natural gift of seeing ones, zeros and cryptic symbols when they touch a keyboard.
“Not really, no. Only those with The Gift can make it out there,” said the brother using a vocal distortion filter. His sister filled in: “It’s very tough competition. Sometimes the only thing that makes the difference is the hoodie. It also helps if you have a map of the Earth in your secret bunker. It’s good for geotagging victims.”
Then there are those that, in addition to The Gift, have additional Gifts, such as p00r 0wn3r. He called us through a network of crypted relays and refused to give his location but judging by his English accent, we can safely assume he’s from a French-speaking area of the world.
“You see, I was born with a severe eyesight handicap, so I learned Braille. Soon after finishing gymnasium I realized that I can come up with the correct password simply by touching text boxes on the screen. It’s called “tactic decryption” and there are very few of us that have this gift.”
Concluding our series of interviews, we discussed with one of the unfortunate hackers who do not have The Gift. Meet Ovidiu from Moldavia.
“Not having The Gift complicates my life. I must always use fancy lights and a fog machine to be even able to bypass the simplest security measures. If I wear an expensive suit in combination with a thick balaclava I can look threatening enough to manage some simple weekend heists. I’ve been kinda depressed due to all this.”
That’s all folks, a glimpse into the unique lives of those that force you to change passwords every now and then, and sometimes even manage to siphon money from your bank accounts.
If you want to see more pictures with hackers, just follow this simple Google search:
This text has been published in the “Satire” category for a good reason.
P.S.: if you want to understand more about hackers than what the silly stereotypes online show, you can start from this Wikipedia entry: