Computer Security/Ethical Hacking/White Hat Alliance

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If you've been following the exploits of the White Hat Alliance, then you might have been surprised recently to discover that the first of their number has publicly revealed his identity. Robin Haynes, aka Black Mamba, is the first to publicly declare that he is a member of the elite ethical hacking collective.

The WHA is a group that started up a few years ago offering their hacking services to major international corporations. They do their best to break through a company's security, revealing weaknesses and flaws that can then be fixed before any less ethical hackers have the opportunity to take advantage of them. The group first worked with Wells Fargo, defending them from a major not attack, and have since gone on to work for Exxon Mobil, Macy's, and numerous other high profile clients.

It's not clear yet just which of the WHA's exploits Robin Haynes is responsible for, though given that he's British we know that he's worked with their group's UK clients. We know more about what Haynes got up to before the WHA found him, when he operated solo under the alias 'Black Mamba'. Haynes first earned recognition from a series of Counter Strike hacks and mods - nothing malicious or illegal, but just enough to get people's attention, proving his ability to break into systems - and his restraint in not taking advantage of that ability.

From Counterstrike, Haynes moved on to other games, from StarCraft 2 to Call of Duty. But then he started to expand beyond gaming, and used his abilities to gain access to the back end of a few corporations' websites - corporations that would later go on to become WHA clients. Haynes accessed their sites, took a look around, and then informed them of the security flaws he'd discovered, letting them know that they were lucky that someone more malicious didn't get there first.

Haynes hasn't yet disclosed whether he found the WHA, or they found him - or even if he's one of their founding members. Either way, he's clearly skilled, and has found a way to make a living doing what he does best - the ethical way.