Computer Hacking for Everyone

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Taught by Mikhail Voloshin

Mikhail Voloshin is a Gen-X computer nerd currently working at Google, Inc., as a software engineer in the DoubleClick online advertising platform. He's built tactical communication systems for military and first-responder agencies, worked on speech recognition systems at Microsoft and MITRE, patented peer-to-peer data distribution algorithms, and coded a couple of social networking websites that nobody actually uses. He's lived in Chicago, Boston, and Seattle before coming to New York. When he's not coding, he's working on a tech thriller about cybercrime and genetic engineering; come give his writing a +1 Like at!

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The  word evokes images of antisocial college kids with purple hair and abundant piercings, sitting in a dark room listening to techno music and staring at a glowing monitor scrolling with cryptic green text. (That image would be actually pretty accurate.)

Some see them as obnoxious pests, defacing websites and spreading viruses for mere amusement. Some see them as dangerous criminals, leveraging their technical savvy to commit theft and fraud. Some see them as egalitarian champions of liberty, capable of exposing malfeasance and striking fear into the hearts of corrupt politicians and corporate honchos alike. Some see them as lovable rogues, some as mad geniuses, some as despicable scoundrels.

But what do hackers actually do?

In this course, you'll get a small glimpse of what the world looks like through a hacker's eyes. You'll learn about who hackers are and what motivates them. You'll learn the basics of how the World Wide Web works, and what underlying technical "flaws" allow hackers to perform certain nefarious feats. You'll be walked through a few very simple hacking tricks on a step-by-step basis, and taught what to look out for to spot a few key vulnerabilities - both to keep yourself protected, and to spot weaknesses in the real world. 

By the end of the course, you'll know that computer hacking isn't something you merely watch in movies or read about in headlines, performed by mysterious shadowy figures using incomprehensible powers. You'll know that hacking is something that you can see with your own two eyes and do with your own ten fingers. 

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