As the continual global hack scares send shivers down the spine of various industries cashing in on eCommerce boom, the demand of near non-descript white hat hackers has witnessed a sudden surge, prompting thousands to enroll into short-term courses on ethical hacking.

Now, wary companies are willing to shell out a huge sum on hiring of good hacking and security experts who could to safeguard their virtual business against online frauds.

Around 20 authorised institutes, offering short-term ethical hacking courses, have suddenly found themselves in the limelight. Thousands of Bangaloreans have already enrolled themselves into ethical hacking courses.

If some have pursing these crash courses to land a job as an ethical hacker, many are doing them just to be aware of the increasing risks and to find better solutions to the hacking problem.

On completion of the course, the students are awarded certification from the International Council of E-Commerce Consultants (EC-Council).
"The course is intense and this year the response has been stunning. Around 30 per cent students are fresh graduates who are lured into the field because of bright job prospects, the rest are working techies," said Mohammad Hamza, Ethical hacking training co-ordinator at GiT Institute.

Besides, online breaches have also scared government agencies that are now in the quest for trustworthy ethical hackers.

Institutes claim that there are already 3,000 certified ethical hackers in the city and more are enrolling with each passing day. These courses cost anywhere between Rs 25,000 and Rs 35,000. And the online courses are most popular.

Cash for hacking
"People just need to have a basic knowledge of programming and a passion to innovate each day. With a basic course, a fresher can earn upto Rs 30,000," said Ankit Fadia, renowned ethical hacker who wrote his first book on ethical hacking at the age of 14.

Those with an ethical hacking certificate can easily land a job in finance and banking industries. "The software and BPO industries too are offering jobs, along with all commercial establishments that deal with online trade through credit cards," said Fadia.

If a programmer or a software engineer, who starts as a fresher can today expect a salary of anything between Rs 15,000 and Rs 25,000, but an ethical hacker can earns upto Rs 30,000 in his first job.

While institutes are offering, a set of volunteers furthering the same agenda, have started the Free Software Movement Karnataka (FSMK).

The effort to build a social village has now become a social curse - that's where these white hat hackers come into picture. They work undercover, without revealing their names and designations - which, they think, is the USP of their job.

"Hacking is no more considered to be an evil. In fact, people in the city are opening up to the fact that hacking is actually a very cool thing. The courses on online security are a hit," said Senthil Sundaran, Volunteer, FSMK.

Fact file
The city has more than 20 certified institutes offering the course, on both weekly, weekend and online basis. 
The course costs between Rs 25,000 and Rs 35,000 and ends with a certificate issued by the International Council of E-Commerce Consultants (EC-Council).

The finance and banking sector are the biggest ethical hacking recruiters, followed by software and BPO industry.