Talk:Grey hat

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This article is supported by WikiProject Computing.[edit]

The section on the defacement of seems particularly confusing; I'm assuming it's a bad translation. Perhaps someone who knows about this incident could clean it up. Smably 16:23, 9 April 2006 (UTC)

Done. If you still find it confusing, feel free to add the Confusing-tag again. I've cleaned it up into a state which I belive most people should be able to understand. --Ojan 15:00, 14 May 2006 (UTC)

I am tempted to add a confusing tag, "considered black but the action was grey" hrmm. I query if this whole section should be removed. It doesn't aid explanation in my opinion, the apache hack is far clearer. Znx 09:28, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

Also, I don't see the need to put the current website of the anti-piracy group. It doesn't add anything to the article, and seems to be a subtle suggestion to repeat the incident. endercoaster 13:39 CT, 18 Oct 2007 —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:40, 18 October 2007 (UTC)


I changed the link from "anmäller" to "anmäler", since that is the correct spelling, hope you dont mind :) -- — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:56, 21 May 2006 (UTC)


Attacking corporate businesses with unethical practices could be regarded
as highly unethical and would normally be considered black hat activity.
However, to a grey hat, it may not appear bad even though it is against
that local law. So instead of tagging it black hat, it is a grey hat hack. 

I removed the above line because it was nonspecific about what it deemed to be unethical practices. This made it seem to define entirely black hat activities. I also expounded on some aspects and added an example. -- Kerowren (talk contribs count) 18:24, 20 December 2006 (UTC)

not white hats?[edit]

the example sounds like a white hat attack. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:24, 15 November 2008 (UTC) The difference is that the hackers did not have permission to infiltrate the server. Nave.notnilc (talk) 22:56, 17 December 2008 (UTC)

"Sometimes acts legally"?[edit]

I may be misunderstanding, but based on the information in the "Disambiguation" section, it seems like that part of the opening sentence should read "sometimes acts illegally".Dindon (talk) 20:38, 23 February 2009 (UTC)

Changed from legally to illegally. Kaljtgg (talk) 00:42, 24 June 2009 (UTC)

MUNKIN SEMMUAN SEJALAN BERBAGI,.,. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:55, 26 May 2010 (UTC)

History of the Term[edit]

Given the ridiculous usage of the term 'grey hat' in other wikipedia entries that link to here, I felt it necessary to clean this article up.

I kid you not, in one part of wikipedia someone had mentioned that a gray hat is a hacker who searches the internet, breaking into computers so that he might patch them anonymously for free, thus saving the day. While I do not doubt that in this great big world there are at least a few insane 'hacker messiahs' who run around the internet secretly healing computers all day long, this is not normal behaviour for security analysts.

What I have done is outline the history of the usage of the term. Using references of prominent works, I have shown that the term 'grey hat' has had a varied meaning from the start. If we deconstruct this whole hat debate, we can see that there are two elements to consider:

  1. that attacking a computer can be malicious or non-malicious
  2. when finding a vulnerability the hacker can not disclose, disclose to the vendor, or disclose to everyone

Traditionally there was blackhat and whitehat (malicious and non-malicious) Then we got the Anti-Sec Revolution, and some whitehats began re-thinking their position on full disclosure because it was arming script kiddies for battle. As a result, if we are talking about 3 kinds of hats then we differentiate them by disclosure. If it were just white and black then it would be intent...

Black Hat White Hat Grey Hat
Intent Evil Good Good
Disclosure No one Everyone Vendor Only
  • From the black hat perspective, the grey hat is still an enemy because they seek to fix vulnerabilities rather than exploit them.
  • From the white hat perspective, the grey hat is distrusted because they are not engaging in full disclosure and may break the law sometimes, but they are still an ally because their intent is good.

The Internet Murderer (talk) 14:20, 16 July 2010 (UTC)

They always reveal only to vendors?[edit]

I thought the black-gray-white thing was more like evil-neutral-good. Black acting to harm others, gray acting on their own interests and white to benefit others; with decisions regarding disclosure being done on a case by case basis, or based on personal phylosophy, regardless of one's alignment... --TiagoTiago (talk) 17:14, 22 August 2011 (UTC)

Remove company name from history section?[edit]

The history section opens with a reference to a computer security company (of the white hat variety as they solicit permission and payment in advance of vulnerability testing) which chose a contraction of the phrase "grey hat" to name their company Greyhat, LLC. The contraction is not the same as the phrase this article addresses and is not relevant to the history of the phrase "grey hat" in the computer security content of this article. Allowing that this removal creates a substantial hole in the history section, I have documentation supporting an accurate history of the phrase publicly used as early as 1996 and other documented examples in succeeding years. I will replace the deleted material with these fully referenced additions. Absent objection, I will make these changes during the next ten days. Thank you. Sonora Carlos (talk) 18:31, 31 March 2015 (UTC)

"Grey Hat" used in infosec context in 1976[edit]

Martin Hellman's page has a link to John Gilmore's transcript of the 1976 meeting between Diffie, Hellman, and three NSA staffers [1] - starting at about 28m22s in the conversation, Doug Hogan of the NSA uses the terms "Black Hat", "White Hat", and "Grey Hat". —Hobart (talk) 05:47, 10 July 2016 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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