A script kiddie, skript kiddie, skiddie, kiddie, or skid is an unskilled individual who uses scripts or programs developed by others, primarily for malicious purposes.


In a Carnegie Mellon report prepared for the U.K. Department of Defense in 2000, script kiddies are defined as

The more immature but unfortunately often just as dangerous exploiter of security lapses on the Internet. The typical script kiddy uses existing and frequently well known and easy-to-find techniques and programs or scripts to search for and exploit weaknesses in other computers on the Internet—often randomly and with little regard or perhaps even understanding of the potentially harmful consequences.[1]

Script kiddies typically have at least one or more effective and easily downloadable programs capable of breaching computers and networks.[2]

Script kiddies vandalize websites both for the thrill of it and to increase their reputation among their peers.[2] Some more malicious script kiddies have used virus toolkits to create and propagate the Anna Kournikova and Love Bug viruses.[3] Script kiddies lack, or are only developing, programming skills sufficient to understand the effects and side effects of their actions. As a result, they leave significant traces which lead to their detection, or directly attack companies which have detection and countermeasures already in place, or in some cases, leave automatic crash reporting turned on.[4][5]

Although script kiddie attacks might become increasingly more effective in the future, researchers have noted that other models, like the language model, can also be used to enhance protection against the improved script kiddie attacks. This continuous back and forth improvement suggests that the competition between cyber attackers and defenders will continue to increase.[6]

See also


  1. ^ Mead, Nancy R.; Hough, Eric; Stehney, Theodore R. (31 October 2005). Security Quality Requirements Engineering (SQUARE) Methodology (Report). Carnegie Mellon University. doi:10.1184/R1/6583673.v1.
  2. ^ a b Lemos, Robert (July 12, 2000). "Script kiddies: The Net's cybergangs". ZDNet. Retrieved 2007-04-24.
  3. ^ Leyden, John (February 21, 2001). "Virus toolkits are s'kiddie menace". The Register.
  4. ^ Taylor, Josh (August 26, 2010). "Hackers accidentally give Microsoft their code". ZDNet.com.au. Archived from the original on January 20, 2012.
  5. ^ Ms. Smith (August 28, 2010). "Error Reporting Oops: Microsoft, Meter Maids and Malicious Code". Privacy and Security Fanatic. Network World.
  6. ^ Moskal, Stephen; Laney, Sam; Hemberg, Erik; O'Reilly, Una-May (2023-10-10), LLMs Killed the Script Kiddie: How Agents Supported by Large Language Models Change the Landscape of Network Threat Testing, arXiv:2310.06936, retrieved 2024-02-29

Further reading