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Hacker Psychology, According to Prof. Bernadette Schell

During 2000, sociology researcher Bernadette Schell collected 216 self-report psychology questionnaires from people who attended that year’s Defcon and HOPE hacker conventions. Respondents raged from 14 to 61 years old, with a mean age of 25. Unless otherwise stated, the subset that had been charged with computer crimes did not vary in a statistically significant way from the others.

  • 79% reported monogamous heterosexual lifestyles. Those who said they had been arrested for computer crime were even more likely to report these relationships.

  • Most were employed; mean salary was $56K/year.

  • Hackers are good stress managers.

  • They are good at multitasking.

  • 62% scored as “highly creative” (over 15 on the Creative Personality Test of Dubrin)

  • 14% scored in the high depression range

  • 15% scored in the high manic range (suggestive of bipolar disorder)

  • Most hackers scored Type B personalities, meaning they were “relaxed,” “balanced” and “self-healing.”

 

 

  

 
 

 
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