A certified CEH (Master) is an expert in the field, who understands and knows how to look for weaknesses and vulnerabilities in target systems and uses the same knowledge and tools as a malicious hacker, they’re also well versed with ethical hacking techniques and has demonstrated the same when tested in an environment that mimics a real corporate network through the use of live virtual machines, networks, and applications.
An ethical hacker, also referred to as a white hat hacker, is an information security expert who systematically attempts to penetrate a computer system, network, application or other computing resource on behalf of its owners — and with their permission — to find security vulnerabilities that a malicious hacker could potentially exploit.
The purpose of ethical hacking is to evaluate the security of and identify vulnerabilities in systems, networks or system infrastructure. It includes finding and attempting to exploit any vulnerabilities to determine whether unauthorized access or other malicious activities are possible.
Ethical hackers use their skills and many of the same methods and techniques to test and bypass organizations’ IT security as their unethical counterparts, who are referred to as black hat hackers. However, rather than taking advantage of any vulnerabilities they find for personal gain, ethical hackers document them and provide advice about how to remediate them so organizations can strengthen their overall security.
Ethical hackers generally find security exposures in insecure system configurations, known and unknown hardware or software vulnerabilities as well as operational weaknesses in process or technical countermeasures.