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Hackers in the House

New social network for hackers lets white hats share and job-hunt

First it was MySpace for the teens, then Facebook for the college set, and then LinkedIn for the business professionals -- and now there’s a social network just for hackers.

The House of Hackers social network was created and launched by researchers from GNUCitizen. "The House of Hackers community is established to support the hacker culture, mindset, way of life, ideologies, political views, vision, etc.," wrote researcher Petko Petkov on the GNUCitizen blog today.

Petkov said in the blog that House of Hackers members will be able to exchange ideas, create groups, tiger teams, and “elite circles,” collaborate on projects, and also “participate in the independent, recruitment market.”

The hacker recruitment element of the social network is aimed at connecting members with organizations looking to hire independent security consultants or tiger teams, for instance. The idea is to have these organizations directly post the jobs on the site, and members could then contact them directly about the work. “The market is designed to provide opportunities to the House of Hackers members in a free, open and fair manner,” according to the blog post.

House of Hackers will accept fees for each job posting, according to the blog, and that money will help future funding and research initiatives by the social network community.

There are multiple active hacker forums today, everything from message groups to specific hacker communities within existing social networks like Google’s Orkut and LinkedIn, for example. But House of Hackers is the first social network dedicated to hackers.

HD Moore, director of security research for BreakingPoint Systems, says his initial take on the House of Hackers announcement in the blog post is that the recruitment aspect of the House of Hackers could lure the wrong crowd. “If anything, hackers who work in security do all they can to appear professional and trustworthy and that really seems to undermine it,” Moore says. It could end up attracting "'employers'" who aren't interested in the legality of the work they sponsor, he says.

GNUCitizen's Petkov says the House of Hackers doesn't promote criminal activities, and will be self-policed by security professionals.

"House of Hackers aims to serve as a gateway where hackers can be recruited to join freelance roles - rather than permanent - that match their skillset," he says.

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