Computer Hackers

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What is the definition of the term “hacker?” Is it someone that terrorizes companies by shutting down computers and satellites otherwise rendering them helpless? Or is it merely someone that is curious as to how technology works? The United States Government doesn’t agree at all with the latter of the two. It is almost frightful that the Government of the United States, the most powerful force in the world, can be so discriminative. You think that they would be the ones with some sort of understanding. This is not the case. Although the government believes that computer hackers are an enormous threat to our country, I believe that if they came to an understanding with hacker ethics they would comprehend the fact that computer hackers are not terrorists. It is the government’s belief that if a crime is committed and it involves a computer, hackers are the cause. No questions asked. Since when was the term “hacker” conceived as a person involved in malicious actions on a computer? A true hacker will cause no damage through any means. Hackers merely explore technology to figure out how things work so that they may share their findings as a protection from cyber terrorism and other potential harms. It has been stated that “Knowledge Is Power.” How is it that this power has become such a threat to our government? Former President Thomas Jefferson once wrote that “Ideas should freely spread from one to another over the globe, for the moral and mutual instruction of man, and improvement of his condition, seems to have been peculiarly and benevolently designed by nature, when she made them, like fire, expansible over all space, without lessening their density at any point, and like the air in which we breathe, move, and have our physical being, incapable of confinement of exclusive appropriation. Inventions then cannot, in nature, be a subject of property. Ideas and discoveries should be shared and known by all. Only then will we not suffer the fate of what has happened in history. This is how we learn not to do wrong; by doing wrong and realizing it was wrong (Goldstein 4). As humans we have the ability to learn this. A hot pan isn’t touched over and over again. Once it is learned that the pan is hot the necessity to touch it again becomes superfluous. All success comes from the failure of either the individual or someone that the individual has followed.

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