If companies didn’t get the hint that they should up the ante on security when LinkedIn announced that 6.5 million user passwords were stolen, they should be convinced now.
What’s been dubbed as the “Operation High Roller” attack is said to have transferred as much as $2.5 billion from American, European and Colombian bank accounts.
Instead of prosecuting these criminals, top companies are trying a different tactic: getting them to switch sides and play for the “good team.”
Joseph Walker at The WSJ FINS reports that “government and company representatives are going to unusual lengths to hire white hat hackers — facile programmers who delight in breaking into networks to expose security weaknesses — to help defend their data.”
Recruiters are spending their time visiting 11-hour hackathons to find “long-haired men in their early 20s” with the ability to “skip reading the manual when they get their hands on a new gadget,” Olivier Franchi of Sysdream told Marie Mawad and Jonathan Browning at Bloomberg News.
Mawad and Browning say:
“Employers from Facebook Inc. (FB) to the U.K. government have put up “wanted” signs looking for so-called white-hat hackers — computer geeks who probe networks and pry into private data for recognition or just plain fun, not for money or criminal purposes. The U.K. Ministry of Defence said last year it planned to hire hundreds of security specialists.”
Not only can gifted hackers do what they’re good at, but they can now do it without repercussion. And the best part is that they don’t need any kind of diploma or certificate to have recruiters knocking down their doors.
The only requirement is that they can hack away into all hours of the night.
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