Knowledge is power: An analysis of discussions on hacking forums

Authors: Mcalaney, J., Hambidge, S., Kimpton, E. and Thackray, H.

Journal: Proceedings - 5th IEEE European Symposium on Security and Privacy Workshops, Euro S and PW 2020

Pages: 477-483

ISBN: 9781728185972

DOI: 10.1109/EuroSPW51379.2020.00070

Abstract:

There remains a lack of understanding on the social factors that influence the behaviours and beliefs of people who have an interest in hacking. This research sought to address that gap by exploring the conversations that take place on hacking forums and subreddits. Text in hacking related threads was collected from these sites over a period of several months. Linguistic Inquiry and Word Count (LIWC) software was used to determine the linguistic characteristics of each forum/ subreddit. Thematic analysis was then conducted on a sub-set of text from each source. The results of the LIWC analysis indicated that there are variations in several psychologically relevant factors between these forums and subreddits, including the degree to which users used language that indicated they were being honest, confident, analytical and emotional. There were several results that were inconsistent with stereotypes of hackers, such as a relative absence of language indicating anger. The thematic analysis identified several themes relating to knowledge, skills acquisition, honesty legality and risk. Overall, this research demonstrates that there exists an established online community of hackers, which are likely to be encountered by any young person who becomes interested in cybersecurity and hacking. These communities may potentially act as an important source of social support and social identity for their members. Understanding the dynamics of these communities may better help us steer people towards legitimate cybersecurity careers, where their passion and skills can be used for societal good.

http://eprints.bournemouth.ac.uk/34807/

Source: Scopus

Knowledge is power: An analysis of discussions on hacking forums

Authors: McAlaney, J., Hambidge, S., Kimpton, E., Thackray, H. and IEEE

Journal: 2020 IEEE EUROPEAN SYMPOSIUM ON SECURITY AND PRIVACY WORKSHOPS (EUROS&PW 2020)

Pages: 477-483

DOI: 10.1109/EuroSPW51379.2020.00070

http://eprints.bournemouth.ac.uk/34807/

Source: Web of Science (Lite)

Knowledge is power: An analysis of discussions on hacking forums

Authors: McAlaney, J., Hambidge, S. and Thackray, H.

Conference: IEEE European Symposium on Security and Privacy Workshops (EuroS&PW)

Dates: 7-11 September 2020

Abstract:

There remains a lack of understanding on the social factors that influence the behaviours and beliefs of people who have an interest in hacking. This research sought to address that gap by exploring the conversations that take place on hacking forums and subreddits. Text in hacking related threads was collected from these sites over a period of several months. Linguistic Inquiry and Word Count (LIWC) software was used to determine the linguistic characteristics of each forum/ subreddit. Thematic analysis was then conducted on a sub-set of text from each source. The results of the LIWC analysis indicated that there are variations in several psychologically relevant factors between these forums and subreddits, including the degree to which users used language that indicated they were being honest, confident, analytical and emotional. There were several results that were inconsistent with stereotypes of hackers, such as a relative absence of language indicating anger. The thematic analysis identified several themes relating to knowledge, skills acquisition, honesty legality and risk. Overall, this research demonstrates that there exists an established online community of hackers, which are likely to be encountered by any young person who becomes interested in cybersecurity and hacking. These communities may potentially act as an important source of social support and social identity for their members. Understanding the dynamics of these communities may better help us steer people towards legitimate cybersecurity careers, where their passion and skills can be used for societal good.

http://eprints.bournemouth.ac.uk/34807/

Source: Manual