What Is a Script Kiddie?

What Is a Script Kiddie?

 By Charles Joseph | Cybersecurity Advocate
 Last update: November 25, 2023

A “script kiddie” is a derogatory term used to describe an inexperienced or unskilled hacker who uses pre-written scripts, tools, or automated programs to conduct cyber attacks without a deep understanding of the underlying technology or systems they are targeting.

Script kiddies typically exploit known vulnerabilities, launch denial-of-service attacks, or deface websites using readily available tools and resources found on the internet.

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History of the Word “Script Kiddie”

The term “script kiddie” originated in the 1990s and combined the words “script,” referring to the pre-written code or tools they use, and “kiddie,” a slang term for a child or inexperienced person.

The term implies that these individuals lack the technical expertise and understanding of skilled hackers or cybersecurity professionals.

Script kiddies are often motivated by a desire for notoriety, to impress their peers, or to cause disruption rather than more sophisticated motivations like financial gain or espionage.

While script kiddies are generally less dangerous than more experienced hackers, their actions can still cause significant damage or disruption to the targeted systems.

"Amateurs hack systems, professionals hack people."
-- Bruce Schneier, a renown computer security professional