Encyclopedia > Cracking

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Definition from the Jargon file (http://www.tuxedo.org/~esr/jargon/html/entry/cracking):

cracking n. [very common] The act of breaking into a computer system; what a cracker does. Contrary to widespread myth, this does not usually involve some mysterious leap of hackerly brilliance, but rather persistence and the dogged repetition of a handful of fairly well-known tricks that exploit common weaknesses in the security of target systems, such as buffer overflows and heap overflows.

See also hacking, shellcodes.

Versions of cracking include demon dialing, war dialing and war driving.

The term "cracker" also refers to a person who removes copy protection from computer software. See software cracking.

In petroleum geology and chemistry, cracking is the process whereby complex organic molecules (e.g. kerogens) are converted to simpler molecules(e.g. hydrocarbons) by the breaking of carbon-carbon bonds in the precursors. The rate of cracking is strongly dependent on the temperature and presence of any catalysts.

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