Below, you are going to find information about the major hacker groups in the world. Hackers are software and programming experts who search for vulnerabilities, weaknesses, or misconfigurations in computers and computer networks. Once they identify these opportunities, they gain unauthorized access to systems to manipulate them.
Although there are different hacker types, some of the most popular ones include white-hat, black-hat, gray-hat, phreaker, cracker, hacktivist, lamer, and script kiddie.
As a hacker can cause serious loss for organisations and systems, a group of hackers can lead to devastating results. These groups are among the biggest fears of giant organisations and even governments.
In this guide, we have compiled some of the major hacker groups in the world. Some of them are so powerful that even a well-known hacker group Anonymous cannot stand a chance against them.
- 1 Major Hacker Groups in the World
- 2 Anonymous – Most Famous Major Hacker Groups
- 3 Ayyildiz Tim – Turkish Major Hacker Groups
- 4 Masters of Deception – Oldest Major Hacker Groups
- 5 Legion of Doom
- 6 Lizard Squad
- 7 RedHack
- 8 Bureau 121
- 9 Chaos Computer Club
- 10 Morpho
- 11 Syrian Electronic Army – Syrian Major Hacker Groups
- 12 Tarh Andishan and Ajax – Iranian Major Hacker Groups
- 13 Dragonfly
- 14 APT28 (Fancy Bear)
- 15 PLA Unit 61398
Major Hacker Groups in the World
Please note that we did not list these groups in any particular order. They are all dangerous and it is up to you to decide which one is the most dangerous one.
Anonymous – Most Famous Major Hacker Groups
Although it is not known exactly when Anonymous was founded, it attracted attention in 2008. The group is considered to be one of the most dangerous hacker groups in the world by those who are not interested in cyber security.
The motivation of the group is for political purposes, and it is well-known that the group has a close relationship with 4chan. Members of Anonymous prefer to wear V for Vendetta masks to disguise themselves. They also use this mask as their symbol.
They do not hack for stealing or making money. Anonymous hack for a purpose, and they even contributed to the arrest of a child molester and helped to solve a rape case. Although Anonymous does not work with officials, they voluntarily help in such circumstances.
Anonymous has plenty of members and they all act in line with a single idea. They have millions of supporters all around the world. Anonymous has no language, religion, or nationality. They contact the native language of any country and oppose racist attitudes.
Ayyildiz Tim – Turkish Major Hacker Groups
They are a Turkish hacker group that was founded in New Zealand in 2002. Ayyildiz is a phrase that is used to define the Turkish flag in Turkish and its rough translation is Moon and Star, available on the Turkish flag. Tim is a military term that means Team.
The group became popular after hacking the website of the Pentagon, the United States Ministry of Defense. Group members define themselves as patriots. The main purpose of the group is to protect the Republic of Turkey against possible cyber attacks and respond to them.
Due to this mission, they consider themselves as the soldiers of the virtual world. Currently, Ayyildiz Tim has a dispute with Redhack and Anonymous, which declared war on Turkey.
The group does not hack for stealing or making money but for political reasons. In 2015, Ayyildiz Tim hacked the website of Anonymous as a response to a failed hacking attempt for the Republic of Turkey.
Ayyildiz Tim is also famous for numerous successful cyber attacks organised against the United States, China, and Israel. The group also hacked plenty of websites belonging to the Syrian government.
Masters of Deception – Oldest Major Hacker Groups
Masters of Deception is one of the oldest hacker groups that was founded in the 1980s and it is still active. Most of the group members are unknown and they share the information they obtain through a special rank system they have.
Some of this information is highly confidential, while some of them can be shared over the internet. Five members of the group were arrested with the efforts of the FBI and the Secret Service in 1993 and 1994.
One of the oldest members of the group, Phiber Optik, whose real name is Mark Abene, was arrested and imprisoned.
Legion of Doom
Legion of Doom is one of the oldest hacking groups in the world and founded in the 1980s. The group ended its activities during the 2000s. Although the identities of some of the group members revealed, the identities of many hackers including the founder Lex Luthor still unknown.
The group formed when Lex Luthor faced another hacker group called Masters of Deception. There was a series of cyber attacks between Masters of Deception and Legion of Doom. Experts name it as the Great Hacker War.
The group was famous for hacking phones. They have instilled fear in the United States Government after they started to target many government agencies.
The Lizard Squad hacker group is Black Hat Hackers. The group is famous for organising DDoS attacks on gaming systems and networks. Although the group founded in 2014, they managed to be one of the legendary groups.
Some of the systems and countries that attacked by the group were North Korea, PlayStation Network, League of Legends, Xbox Live, and Destiny.
This group, which generally prefers the DDoS method in their attacks, believed to be consisting of seven hackers.
RedHack hacker group founded in 1997. The group adopts socialist and Marxist ideology and consists of twelve main members. However, there are plenty of sub-members among the main members.
In general, they target the websites of governments. The group became popular when they crashed the website of the Ankara Police Department in 2012. The group also helped officials to arrest pedophiles and shut down their accounts.
They are famous for hacking for political and social reasons and receive great support from social media users.
Unlike South Korea, North Korea is famous for its dictatorship and many people believe that it is far from any kind of technology. However, North Korea is one of the famous countries that employ more than 1,800 hackers all around the world.
Group members carefully selected from the Automation University. They involved in many illegal events. South Korea is a country that suffers a lot because of the attempts and hacks.
The group involved in all kinds of events such as deleting the banking records and crashing the website of the presidency. Their biggest cyber attack cost more than $15 million to Sony.
The group also hacked the United States National Security Force and damaged 300,000 devices that caused a $4 billion loss.
Chaos Computer Club
Chaos Computer Club, i.e., CCC, founded in 1981 and it mainly consists of German hackers. Surprisingly, they are not aggressive just like other hacker groups on the list. In fact, they involved in plenty of events that the press appreciated.
The group hacked Germany’s federal post office’s system, claimed by the security provider to be extremely secure, and stole 134,000 Marks. However, they returned the money the next day.
Morpho is another hacker group that is active since 2011. The group hacks the systems of investment, technology, and medicine companies. An unknown investor funds the group and the group has a high budget.
These hackers attacked many websites such as Microsoft, Twitter, Facebook, and Apply with special software and put the organisations in a difficult situation.
Some believe that the group consists of a few members. They are famous for their extreme and advanced coding and software knowledge. Experts consider them as the most professional hacker group in the world.
Syrian Electronic Army – Syrian Major Hacker Groups
This group includes Syrian hackers as well as sympathizers of Iran and Hezbollah, and organised many cyber attacks over the years. In general, the group targets the famous news websites of Western countries. For example, they targeted the famous content-sharing website, The Onion, with malware.
They also hacked the Twitter account of AP, which is one of the important press companies in the United States, and tweeted about Obama injured in the explosions at the White House.
Members of the group are still unknown, but the New York Times once reported that the members are likely to be Iranian.
Tarh Andishan and Ajax – Iranian Major Hacker Groups
Iran used to make an effort to increase its competence in the cyber world to ensure the security of its country and its nuclear weapons. The country used to (maybe still) work with a hacker group called Ajax together with Tarh Andishan. The government founded Tarh Andishan and it is an official hacker group.
This group, which hacked the airway systems of countries such as Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and South Korea, also attacked many industries from telecommunications to oil.
Many experts believe, Russia and Eastern Europe funds the hacker group Dragonfly. The group is protecting the power grids and other control systems of Eastern European companies located in the United States and Europe.
APT28 (Fancy Bear)
APT28 is one of the Russian hacker groups. Some believe that APT28 and Dragonfly funded in the same way. The group only targets the areas, where the Russian government is also interested.
They became famous after they hacked the websites of NATO, Poland, and Georgia and gained unauthorized access to the Organization for European Cooperation and Security systems.
PLA Unit 61398
This is a Chinese hacker group. Although the Chinese government admitted that they have a cyber security team, they did not accept their relations with PLA Unit 61398
Some believe that Chinese government funds PLA Unit 61398. The hacker group stole information from 70 international companies, governments, and non-profit organisations in only 5 years.
Some claim that the group hacked Israel’s systems in 2014 and stole countless information about the missile defense system.
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