programming languages for hacking

BY Jaber Posted August 10, 2023 Update August 14, 2023
programming languages for hacking

Discover powerful programming languages for hacking and cybersecurity. Explore top choices and boost your skills in ethical hacking and digital defense


Programming, like water, makes every digital field alive.

By further specializing in digital and technical domains, we introduce today the field of hacking. Let me clarify here that we are not discussing ethical or unethical hacking, as that decision is up to you and your intentions towards what you want to learn in the end and the underlying goals. What we can provide in this article is the amount of information, specifically about the important programming languages that you should learn and master to immerse yourself in the field of hacking as a whole (whether ethical or unethical).

Programming Language

It should be noted that learning the following programming languages does not mean that you will become a "hacker" and post on your Facebook or Twitter account, "Hacked... Watch your account!" Instead, these programming languages will provide you with the necessary expertise to deal with any programming difficulties you may encounter during the process of penetration testing that you will perform. And remember, to learn hacking, you need dedicated courses, training programs, and articles in the field in addition to learning the following programming languages.

Therefore, after reading this article, we recommend that you refer to the above-mentioned articles to specialize and enhance your knowledge further. As mentioned earlier, programming languages in the field of hacking are only capable of explaining problems or the mechanics of the platform you are about to hack in order to discover its weaknesses.

Ruby Programming Language:

I believe that the Ruby programming language is the optimal choice for starting to learn if you want to enter the world of hacking. Some may disagree and argue that Python is in the first place and it is the best, but I strongly disagree. The Ruby programming language is powerful enough for programming and developing any hacking application or any piece of code capable of performing simple or complex hacking operations. Let's not forget that the biggest hacking project, Metasploit, started with Ruby and includes codes and scripts in Ruby more than half of the time, while the rest of the projects inside it are shared between Python and Perl. The Ruby programming language, as well as its framework Rails, have many powerful features. Ruby may be a bit challenging to understand or work with, but it is worth using as it is highly intelligent and powerful in the field.

Python Programming Language:

 The Python programming language has many uses in the programming field. It can be used to create desktop software, web applications, data analysis, data science, and many other areas. It is worth mentioning that Python is also used in the field of hacking. Python is essential in the world of hacking as it provides several packages for detecting vulnerabilities in software and platforms, identifying their weaknesses, and gathering data about the targeted platform. Moreover, there are packages in the Python programming language that allow you to develop powerful hacking software capable of breaking the security barriers of many software applications. You will need strong courses to learn how to use it, but learning Python will provide you with strong experience in developing your own software that can target any platform.

JavaScript Programming Language:

 JavaScript is one of the powerful programming languages in today's web world. It can almost detect weaknesses in any website or web application. You can even write scripts or code that can be applied in the console of any website to extract its vulnerabilities and weaknesses. This has been seen a lot in Capture the Flag (CTF) competitions. JavaScript is essential for detecting weaknesses in web applications today. In fact, the use of JavaScript has expanded to desktop applications as well. You can develop desktop applications capable of extracting weaknesses in the targeted platforms in your hacking process. Learning JavaScript is necessary today to deal with any web application, whether programmatically or in the world of hacking.

C/C++ Programming Languages:

 I'm combining these two languages into one category because they share the same purpose. Both C and C++ rely on the Assembling feature, which means they are two languages capable of dealing with machine language but in a human-readable way. You can control hardware elements, for example, using them. That's why both C and C++ are used in programming operating systems like Linux and Unix. You may also need both languages to interact more seriously with the devices you are targeting. You don't always target just web or desktop applications. Sometimes you need to breach the privacy of an electronic device that may not even have an operating system or anything like that. To be able to do that, you will need to control it using Assembly languages like C or C++.

SQL Language:

SQL (Structured Query Language) is used in the form of commands or queries. These queries connect to databases and retrieve desired data through other commands included in this language. For example, to get all the information about users in the Users table from a specific database, you can use the SQL code "SELECT * FROM users" to retrieve all the information. SQL is accompanied by other dynamic languages such as PHP, which sometimes overlook some fundamentals of queries, causing vulnerabilities, including the famous SQL Injection. Learning SQL is necessary to communicate with databases, access them, find data, and so on.

Java Language:

Java is a versatile programming language that is widely used for web, desktop, and mobile applications. It is also used in the field of data science and analytics. Learning Java can help you identify vulnerabilities, problems, and threats in software that uses Java as its primary language. Java has a wide range of applications and numerous software packages. Understanding the ingredients used to make a candy will enable you to change its flavor or detect flavors that spoil your candy.

Other Programming Languages You Might Want to Learn:

 The list of programming languages mentioned above does not imply mastery of all of them. Some of them can introduce you to the field. Personally, I recommend Ruby or Python. However, if you have already studied Java or specialize in Java programming, for example, you can simply explore how Java is utilized in penetration testing. In this context, we suggest considering other programming languages that you are proficient in or have extensive knowledge of. You can enhance your skills in those languages and explore the hacking and penetration aspects in those languages as well. These languages include:

o   PHP programming language,

 as many websites today rely on PHP or their specific frameworks.

o   Perl programming language

which is an old and powerful language in the field of hacking. It has also contributed to the development of the Metasploit project. However, Perl has complex developments, and it is recommended to use Python instead.

o   Assembly language

 which we did not include alongside C and C++ because it is difficult to learn and complex. The previous two languages are sufficient to cover what you may do or benefit from using Assembly in the world of penetration testing.

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