Electricity/Electronics for Hackers: Basics: Part 1 (Introduction to the Series)
Hello again, fellow hackers! Null-Byte is a world to learn about hacking. But in my time here, I've pretty much only seen articles about software hacking. Here at Null Byte, few seem to know about electricity, more specifically electronics. The thing is, using electronics is really useful in hacking! Especially in cyber-warfare!
Keep in mind that a computer and everything related to it, is just an electric circuit. So understanding how electricity works, might help you exploit it better.
Furthermore, flaws in electricity can't be patched. You simply can't change the electromagnetic spectrum (we will cover that later), so signal scramblers will never stop working. And there are also other appliances that we can make by our self more easily, like a power supply for our raspberry pi, which is one of the things i am planning to build in this series.
I consider myself more of an electrical engineer than an ethical hacker sometimes, but I try to apply my skills in electricity and electronics when I am hacking, and the other way around, which inspired me to write this series.
- What electricity is, essentially.
- Safety when working with electronics (decided to include this for people who are new to the subject).
- What "The amount of electricity" is, and how to calculate it (we will need this knowledge in pretty much all of our circuits).
- What electrical voltage, current, and electrical resistance is. (we will need this in all of our circuits).
- Ohm's law (we will need this in all of our circuits).
- The electromagnetic spectrum (needed for our cellphone/radio/Wi-Fi scrambler).
- The different types of electricity (needed for our RPi power supply).
- Oscillation (needed for our scrambler, again).
- The different components in an electric circuit, like: resistors, diodes, capacitors, transformers, transistors, etc...
- And much more!
The reason I want to teach you all of this, is so that you will actually understand what is going on, and won't be considered a script kiddie. We're here to learn after all, aren't we? Also, take note that this isn't in chronological order, I just wanted to give you all a taste of what you will learn in this series.
Like I already said, we can apply this knowledge for hacking in a lot of ways. These are the things I am planning to build in this series, but I might even invent more devices and post them here!
- A Radio, cellphone, and Wi-Fi jammer. Those of you who know me better and know that I am obsessed with electricity and electronic engineering almost as much as with hacking, have been asking me a lot of times on how to make a signal jammer. After studying the electromagnetic spectrum and oscillation, I decided to give this project a shot!
- A power supply for our RPi. OTW already Introduced us to the Raspberry Pi, and it is also later on in Mr.Robot, Where Elliot installs the RPi, that inspired me to build a power supply. In that scene, we see Elliot infiltrate the building where Evil Corp. is hiding their tape records of the student debts. When Elliot installs the RPi behind a thermostat, we see his RPi doesn't have a battery pack, and that he is cutting open the wire and starts to re-wire the thermostat with his RPi (this proofs again that good hackers MUST know some basic electronics/electricity!). But I personally think he also got the power to drive his RPi from the 230V (Volts) of AC (Alternating Current) electricity that go into the thermostat via the cable Elliot cut open. The thing is, the RPi works on the power coming from a USB port, which is 5V DC (Direct Current). 230V is simply too high for the RPi, and it doesn't work with AC, so Elliot must've made some kind of power supply to convert the AC to DC and lower the voltage to 5V. It is this power supply that I am going to recreate.
- The USBBomb. This is an invention that got me some notoriety in other hacking forums. It is simply a USB stick that contains a battery of 9V, and when plugged into anything that has a USB port, it will simply fry the device. I exploited Ohm's law to make this work. Take note that I wasn't the first to invent this, but that I just managed to make it in a cheaper way.
Then I was also planning on making an EMP bomb, that would disable all electronics in a radius of 20 meters. But before I can attempt this, I need to study some things first.
Okay, This is it for the introduction to the series. I hope I convinced you all that electronics can be useful for hacking and cyber warfare. My next article will be about what electricity is, the different parts of an electric circuit, how we can calculate "the amount of energy" and how we can apply this in real life situations, and maybe i will also talk about Ohm's law. If everything goes as planned, I'll have part 2 up later today or early tomorrow.
Also, I'd appreciate your feedback on this series!