Why is hacking so wrong in movies

The 10 best movie hacks

In every movie, be it horror, action, or thriller, there is at least one moment that IT professionals find laughable, when a mainframe is hacked, a virus is shown in action, or something else computer-related. Smarter directors show something like this very briefly and avoid looking at the screen, which could distract the viewer from the action. But in reality, hacks are less glamorous, quite unspectacular, and often last days or weeks. That is why we respect directors all the more who manage to shoot an entire film exclusively about computers and network issues, which looks good, but at the same time does not attract criticism from the experts.

Hackers - On the FBI's network [1995]

The makers of this film avoid showing the actual hacking process for most of the film. They show fast typing on the keyboard, some abstract graphics, nothing more. However, many of the hacks shown are perfectly feasible, and the conversations of the hackers in the film are also quite realistic: Unix books, weak passwords and similar topics show that the director and writer spent some time learning about how hacks are carried out . It seems like they decided that the realistic portrayal of the hacking would be easylooks boring.

Die Hard 4.0 [2007]

The hit action film starring Bruce Willis also contains a lot of funny dialogues about cyber security and uses hacking themes a little excessively in the story. Even if many tricks are shown (remote access to video surveillance systems and control of traffic lights are absolutely possible), it is quite complicated to carry out all of these, especially in the short time and so quickly in sequence. In addition, it is not exactly easy to blow something up remotely over the Internet. And while there are early examples of malware bringing real factories to a standstill, this is not the best way to break something - especially not when the schedule is tight.

Nonetheless, critical infrastructure needs to be protected from hackers and we should thank Bruce Willis for bringing this issue to the attention.

James Bond 007: Skyfall [2012]

From the point of view of a computer professional, this film is memorable for two reasons: On the one hand, it contains another, not so easy to create, explosion controlled via the Internet, and on the other hand, it does not contain the generally correct idea that secret information is stolen from the Internet today any back stairs where spies hide from the security forces. Other funny scenes include a hilariously decorated hacker headquarters on a desert island. In fact, there is no point in setting up a data center on a lonely Asian island, because it is easy to find there and a large bandwidth will probably not be available for it. Real hackers usually rent the required computer power in large cities, especially in Asia. There is no need to isolate yourself, hackers protect themselves with encryption.

WarGames - War Games [1983]

An old movie that geeks still love. The story revolves around young hackers who hack an important military computer and then discover that it has some simulation games installed on it. When they play these games, they don't realize that they aren't actually simulations and that they can use them to launch real missiles that might start World War III. The film shows some real hacking tricks of the time, for example wardialing. But the main point of "WarGames" is wrong.

The Internet was designed as a military network, so the original Internet protocols contain minimal protection. It was believed that anyone with access to a computer terminal was triple screened by security guards. Of course that is no longer true today. Fortunately, those in charge of the military have observed the development of the Internet, so that all major military systems are completely separated from the Internet.

Sneakers - The Silent [1992]

The story of this film was developed by the writers of "WarGames". It revolves around a "black box" with which any encryption can be cracked. Of course, the secret services of different countries are after this treasure, and the NSA also plays a role in the story. In reality, it is impossible to develop such a device (otherwise the NSA would not be so passionate about encrypted email service providers). On the other hand, the social engineering tricks are presented absolutely correctly - for both 1992 and 2013.

The Bourne Ultimatum [2007]

A rare gem - the writers of this spy film really listened to the computer security consultants! Of course, you have to hack a few computers to steal secret documents in the 21st century. And the computer screens in this film show real programs used by both hackers and system administrators: SSH, Bash, and Hollywood's favorite port scanner, NMAP.

Matrix Reloaded [2003]

The Matrix trilogy popularized the philosophy of simulated realities, but geeks love this film primarily for aesthetic reasons. Of course there is a lot of hacking in the story, but it usually happens magically, and is not much different from Harry Potter spells. In general, one can say that the problem of “breaking out of a sandbox”, which the Matrix heroes want to solve, really does exist: Modern malware often uses exploits, for example for Adobe Reader, to solve it. But the filmmakers hardly thought about it. Nevertheless, thank you for showing the real NMAP program every now and then.

One Point Zero - You are programmed [2004]

An unusual story that revolves around artificial intelligence, nanorobots, economic conspiracy and of course hacking. This isn't a Hollywood movie, so the writers ignored the Hollywood tradition of portraying NMAP as the ultimate hacking tool. You have shown the real source code of the online virus scanner Viralator.

Tron [1982]

Almost twenty years before “Matrix” and “The Thriteenth Floor - Are you what you are thinking?”, Living people and computer programs met as equals - in the cult film “Tron”. The filmmakers saw computers as arcade slot machines, so they don't mention hacking as such, everything looks more like Pong or Space Invaders. That was extremely naive, but anyway (or because of it) the film became a science fiction classic.

Facing [2009]

Many find the Swedish film version of Stieg Larsson's novel better - more atmospheric and with more realistic characters. This is also true when it comes to the hacking scenes in which the protagonists use good old NMAP to scan computers. This is realistic because hacking computers has become one of the most effective ways to spy on secrets. In addition, it is usually easier, cheaper and safer than monitoring someone or breaking into his / her home. There is an even more effective way: stealing the monitored person's smartphone. That is usually full of secret and private data.

Of course, it is possible to protect yourself against such dangers - with a reliable security solution for all devices, such as Kaspersky Internet Security. But the film heroes often don't know that