In an increasingly technological and digital world, it should not surprise us that advances in these technologies are quickly learned and used by young people. It is not strange to see children between the ages of 3 and 10 handling a smartphone as if they were adults. That is why the new generation of cybercriminals is starting very early, even if they do not fully understand the repercussions of their actions. This article will talk a little more about these hacker kids.
Stereotypes do not apply to the new generation of cybercriminals
Since the 80s and going through the 90s, we have witnessed how children began to be avid consumers of technology, quickly absorbing the knowledge in the use of the different devices of the time. But this generation, known as Millennials, is being eclipsed by the new ones. This is because children born in the last two decades quickly learn to use the technology that surrounds them, keeping pace with its voracious growth, compared to children born in the last decades of the previous century.
This is why the children of this 21st century break paradigms and stereotypes; this even translates to the world of cybercriminals. All children and teenagers have access to devices ranging from PCs to smartphones, learning at the same time the utilities they possess. However, some go beyond what can be done regularly with them, learning how to use the systems thoroughly.
That’s why the stereotype of the taciturn hacker between 20 and 30 years old, who is confined to their home, no longer exists. This new generation of cybercriminals are children known by their community, who have friends, who charm people but whose knowledge is so great that it is not strange that they are able to access the systems of their schools and even the public ones of their locality. It is them you have to be aware of.
David Oliveros’ example
David Oliveros is a 16-year-old third-year student at South Miami Senior High School, who confessed to having carried out 8 DDoS attacks with which he managed to saturate the systems of the affected centers, including his own school. The knowledge and ability of this young man are undeniable, but he did not understand the magnitude of his actions and the repercussions they brought. Oliveros was charged with several charges, including: attempted fraud, 3rd-degree felony, and interference with educational institutions (2nd-degree misdemeanor).
Whether he did it alone or not, it cannot be denied that this new generation of cybercriminals has extensive knowledge of systems and attacks but, precisely, their lack of experience in the world makes them the perfect targets for more experienced hackers, since they become the perfect cover and end up being the ones to take the punishment. Those who know David were greatly surprised; everyone called him a good guy from his community, who spends quality time with his family and even plays sports, this being the furthest thing from the profile of a hacker.
But this is not the only case. In the United States, there is a long list of young people in these same activities, and Europe has also seen an increase in attacks perpetrated by youngsters. The new generation of cybercriminals is emerging from a very young age. The only way to stop this path through the dark side of technology is with a quality education both at home and in schools.
But it must be understood that it is not about clipping their wings, assuming that these skills are clearly bad, but teaching them that their knowledge and skills should be used for great causes and services. Technology is neither good nor bad; it will absolutely depend on the use that is given to it. Keep in touch with our blog to read the latest news and innovations in the cybersecurity world.
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