According to CNBC, some freelance hackers land $500,000 or so a year to test defences of significant brands like Tesla.
“Bug hunting” involves checking a company’s network for security vulnerabilities and has become a full-time job for many ethical hackers, according to recent data published by Bugcrowd.
Once considered more of a niche side job, specialized bug hunting firms such as Google-owned Bughunter now offer specially designed platforms for hackers to use to search for bugs and flaws at companies looking to have their systems tested.
One company, Bugcrowd, predicts that an estimated 3.5 million cybersecurity jobs will need to be filled by 2021. In 2017, Bugcrowd paid out $113,000 to a hacker who found a single exploit.
The tech company said it was the largest payout to date. In 2018, payouts increased almost 40 percent, according to data published by CNBC.
There are no words that can adequately express the importance of pursuing a freelance hacking career in 2019. Even if you are someone who thinks it’s too complicated, it’s worth giving a try anyway. You never know what you can achieve if you put your mind to it.
Here are three reasons why you should study to become a freelance hacker in 2019.
1. You Can Learning How to Become a Hacker From Home
One of the most significant advantages of studying ethical hacking is the fact that it can be done from home and at any time you have available.
Additionally, because of the nature of the work involved, you can spend as much or as little time learning as you want.
This flexibility allows one to continue working their regular job while they’re studying, and there is no need to travel extra miles to and from a college or tech school.
If you genuinely enjoy hacking, the learning process will not bore you, but instead, you will find it difficult to limit the time you spend doing something you love.
All It Takes To Get Started Is
- Search and enroll for online training classes that offer flexible study times and certificates for each course you complete.
- Purchase a decent laptop or desktop computer that meets certain specs required to run the necessary software, if you don’t have one by now.
- Be sure you have a fast Internet connection.
- Create an inviting study space that allows you to escape the rest of the world and focus on your passion
- Buy lots of coffee.
2. The Cybersecurity Industry Will Only Keep Growing
Though countless articles state this obvious fact, it can’t be driven home enough.
While other jobs in numerous sectors are in danger, including some freelance gigs, cybersecurity will be one specialty that will always require human intervention. And though artificial intelligence and machine learning have since entered the cybersecurity arena, humans are still needed to monitor AI and ML programs in case they are taken over or become rogue.
According to an article published by Forbes, global spending on cybersecurity products and services rose 12.4 percent from 2017 to $114 billion. In a 2017 Gartner survey, “privacy concerns will ‘drive at least 10% of market demand’ for security services through 2019.”
The segments primarily affected include such “identity and access management (IAM), identity governance and administration (IGA) and data loss prevention (DLP),” the article continues.
3. Freelance Hackers Are Becoming the New Frontline of Public Safety and National Security
By now, it’s common knowledge that law enforcement, the military, and spy agencies are very active in recruiting ethical hackers.
There are a growing number of cases where these organizations have even gone as far as recruiting convicted cybercriminals to join their ranks, and with much success.
Other police agencies, such as in the UK, are recruiting people from within and training them as ethical hackers.
In an article posted by Cisomag, the Office for National Statistics revealed that cybercrime is reported to the police every 10 minutes.
Traditional police forces don’t have what it takes to track down and arrest the growing number of sophisticated cybercriminals.
In some events, law enforcement had become targets of cyber attacks themselves — one of the most notorious examples being when Anonymous attacked the Ferguson, Missouri, police department during protests over the shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown.
In addition to that, those hackers who aren’t interested in using their powers to help the government are becoming hacktivists.
Hacktivists such as Anonymous have no specific cause or political side. The hacking group has been known to go after terrorist organizations, corrupt corporations, criminal organizations, and dark web child pornography sites, to name but a few.
Other “grey-hat” hackers conduct “hack-back” operations. An example of hacking-back is when Lockheed Martin sent a team of hackers to Florida to uncover who had been hacking their systems.
The team found out that the hackers were Chinese hackers working for the Chinese government and proposed hacking the Chinese hackers computer systems to discover what they had stolen, as well as possible infecting the systems with a virus or spyware. Other hack-back operations are done by hacktivists as well.
- Article Updated on September 2021. Some minor text updates done. Content validated and updated for relevance in 2021.