Modern perceptions of hackers are often informed by their stereotypical portrayals in Hollywood. But in reality, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Despite what most blockbuster films would have you believe, hackers aren’t formidable hooded characters or gun-slinging action heroes. In fact, they have more in common with everyday people than you think.

Today, Bugcrowd debuts its 2020 Inside the Mind of a Hacker report—the most comprehensive study on global hackers and the economics of security research—demystifying hackers with new data about where they come from, what motivates them, which skills they have, and how they see themselves. 

The latest edition analyzes 3,493 survey responses from working hackers, plus activity on the Bugcrowd Platform between May 1, 2019 and April 30, 2020. Additionally, the report incorporates data from 1,549 programs and 7.7 million platform interactions to provide a striking and in-depth view of emerging trends among Bug Bounty, Penetration Testing, Attack Surface Management, and Vulnerability Disclosure Programs. 

But who exactly are these hackers, and can organizations trust them? 

Once thought of as an underground hobby, ethical hacking and security research has since become a mainstream movement that offers diverse individuals the means of generating a sustainable livelihood from anywhere in the world.

While hackers might not share the same history, they all share a destiny at Bugcrowd. And in 2020, diversity happens to be the one thing hackers have in common. Hackers come from all walks of life, living in countries spanning six of the world’s seven continents, and possess varied skills, ranging from conventional techniques to specialist expertise. Together they help organizations face the unknown, unexamined, and unsolved challenges of tomorrow through their differences—not just their similarities.

Read the report now to unlock more insights, such as:

  • Why the Economy of On-Demand Cybersecurity is Booming: Hackers on the Bugcrowd platform prevented $8.9B of cybercrime last year and will mitigate a projected $55B by 2025.
  • How Diversity Improves Resilience in Security Testing: Hackers scale human ingenuity across 100+ different countries on the Bugcrowd platform and find autonomy, purpose, and mastery through their work for leading organizations.
  • Why Hacking is More Than a Career: Meet the next generation of hackers, who are working together to solve the greatest cybersecurity problems of our time amid a growing digital crisis.

“Globally-distributed good-faith hackers are increasing in number and diversifying. Bugcrowd gives organizations the power to proactively leverage human ingenuity – the enabler of malicious cyber attacks – at scale to prevent them,” said Casey Ellis, founder, chairman, and CTO of Bugcrowd.

Assumptions are windows to the world in cybersecurity, but it’s time to dust them off and let in the light. 

Challenge your security status quo, and find out who hackers really are #TakeHacktion