Journal article Open Access

Hackers' Motivations: Testing Schwartz's Theory of Motivational Types of Values in a Sample of Hackers

Renushka Madarie

Editor(s)
K. Jaishankar

Although much has been written on topic of hacker motivations, little empirical research has been conducted and even less research has attempted to quantify hackers’ motivations. The present study analyses relationships between the frequency of several hacking behaviours and motivations to hack in a sample of male hackers and potential hackers. Motivations frequently recurring in the literature are assessed and Schwartz´s (1992) Theory of Motivational Types of Values is applied. A preference for self-transcendence and openness to change values was found in the whole sample. Intellectual challenge and curiosity were rated as the most important motivators to circumvent security systems. However, correlation analyses signified the importance of aversion of conservation values. Hackers appear to be more motivated by what they dislike rather than by what they value. Future studies are needed to further examine the discrepancy between hackers’ ranking of motivations and the relationship between motivations and hacking behaviours.

Files (804.6 kB)
Name Size
Madarievol11issue1IJCC2017.pdf
md5:b20ba70de570039ac0de30b9647b346e
804.6 kB Download
  • Australian Institute of Criminology. (2005). Hacking motives. High Tech Crime Brief, 6, 1-2. Alleyne, B. (2011). We are all hackers now: Critical sociological reflections on the hacking phenomenon. Under Review, 1-32. Barber, R. (2001). Hackers profiled: Who are they and what are their motivations?. Computer Fraud & Security, 2001(2), 14-17. Bardi, A., & Schwartz, S. H. (2003). Values and behavior: Strength and structure of relations. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 29(10), 1207-1220. DOI: 10.1177/0146167203254602. Campbell, Q., & Kennedy, D. M. (2009). The Psychology of Computer Criminals. In S. Bosworth & M. E. Kabay (Eds.), Computer security handbook. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons. Conway, M. (2003). Hackers as terrorists? Why it doesn't compute. Computer Fraud & Security, 2003(12), 10-13. DOI: 10.1016/S1361-3723(03)00007-1. Fötinger, C., & Ziegler, W. (2004). Understanding a hacker's mind - A psychological insight into the hijacking of identities. 1-48. Goode, S., & Cruise, S. (2006). What motivates software crackers? Journal of Business Ethics, 65(2), 173-201. DOI: 10.1007/s10551-005-4709-9. Hacker. (2001). In The Hacker's Dictionary. Retrieved from http://hackersdictionary.com/html/entry/hacker.html Halbert, D. (1997). Discourses of danger and the computer Hacker. The Information Society, 13(4), 361-374. DOI: 10.1080/019722497129061. Holt, T. J., & Kilger, M. (2012). Examining willingness to attack critical infrastructure online and offline. Crime & Delinquency, 58(5), 798-822. DOI: 10.1177/0011128712452963. Hutchings, A. (2013). Hacking and fraud: A qualitative analysis of online offending and victimisation. In K. Jaishankar & N. Ronel (Eds.), Global criminology: Crime and victimization in a globalized era (pp. 93-114). Boca Raton: CRC Press. Jordan, T., & Taylor, P. (1998). A sociology of hackers. The Sociological Review, 46(4), 757-780. DOI: 10.1111/1467-954X.00139. Kilger, M., Arkin, O., & Stutzman, J. (2004). The honeynet project: Know your enemy. Addison-Wesley Professional. Kshetri, N. (2006). The simple economics of cybercrimes. Security & Privacy, IEEE, 4(1), 33-39. DOI: 10.1109/MSP.2006.27. Levy, S. (2010). Hackers: Heroes of the computer revolution. Sebastopol, CA: O'Reilly. Lindeman, M. & Verkasalo, M. (2005). Measuring values with the Short Schwartz's Value Survey. Journal of Personality Assessment, 85(2), 170-178. DOI: 10.1207/s15327752jpa8502_09. Meyers, C., Powers, S., & Faissol, D. (2009). Taxonomies of cyber adversaries and attacks: A survey of incidents and approaches. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, 7, 1-22. Myyry, L., Siponen, M., Pahnila, S., Vartiainen, T., & Vance, A. (2009). What levels of moral reasoning and values explain adherence to information security rules? An empirical study. European Journal of Information Systems, 18(2), 126-139. DOI: 10.1057/ejis.2009.10. Nissenbaum, H. (2004). Hackers and the contested ontology of cyberspace. New Media & Society, 6(2), 195-217. DOI: 10.1177/1461444804041445. Rogers, M. K. (2006). A two-dimensional circumplex approach to the development of a hacker taxonomy. Digital investigation, 3(2), 97-102. DOI: 10.1016/j.diin.2006.03.001. Rokeach, M. (1973). The nature of human values. New York, NY: The free press. Ryckman, R. M. & Houston, D. M. (2003). Value priorities in American and British female and male university students. The Journal of Social Psychology, 143(1), 127-138. DOI: 10.1080/00224540309598435. Schwartz, S. H. (1992). Universals in the content and structure of values: Theoretical advances and empirical tests in 20 countries. Advances in Experimental Social Psychology, 25(1), 1-65. Schwartz, S. (2013). Value Priorities and Behavior: Applying. In C. Seligman, J. M. Olson, & M. P. Zanna (Eds.), The psychology of values: The Ontario symposium (pp. 1-24). New York, NY: Psychology Press. Schwartz, S. H., & Bilsky, W. (1987). Toward a universal psychological structure of human values. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 53(3), 550-562. Schwartz, S. H., & Bilsky, W. (1990). Toward a theory of the universal content and structure of values: Extensions and cross-cultural replications. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 58(5), 878-891. DOI: 10.1037/0022-3514.58.5.878. Schwartz, S. H., & Boehnke, K. (2004). Evaluating the structure of human values with confirmatory factor analysis. Journal of Research in Personality, 38(3), 230-255. DOI: 10.1016/S0092-6566(03)00069-2. Schwartz, S. H., & Rubel, T. (2005). Sex differences in value priorities: Cross-cultural and multimethod studies. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 89(6), 1010-1028. DOI: 10.1037/0022-3514.89.6.1010. Smith, A. D., & Rupp, W. T. (2002). Issues in cybersecurity: Understanding the potential risks associated with hackers/crackers. Information Management & Computer Security, 10(4), 178-183. DOI: 10.1108/09685220210436976. Taylor, P. A. (2005). From hackers to hacktivists: Speed bumps on the global superhighway?. New Media & Society, 7(5), 625-646. DOI: 10.1177/1461444805056009. Thycotic Software Ltd. (2014). Thycotic Black Hat 2014 Hacker Survey Executive Report. Turgeman-Goldschmidt, O. (2005). Hackers' accounts hacking as a social entertainment. Social Science Computer Review, 23(1), 8-23. DOI: 10.1177/0894439304271529. Verkasalo, M., Lönnqvist, J. E., Lipsanen, J., & Helkama, K. (2009). European norms and equations for a two dimensional presentation of values as measured with Schwartz's 21‐item portrait values questionnaire. European Journal of Social Psychology, 39(5), 780-792. DOI: 10.1002/ejsp.580. Warren, M., & Leitch, S. (2010). Hacker taggers: A new type of hackers. Information Systems Frontiers, 12(4), 425-431. DOI 10.1007/s10796-009-9203-y. Woo, H., Kim, Y., & Dominick, J. (2004). Hackers: Militants or merry pranksters? A content analysis of defaced web pages. Media Psychology, 6(1), 63-82. DOI: 10.1207/s1532785xmep0601_3.

Share

Cite as