The best gifts for hackers

Although hackers are often associated with criminal activity and interest in hacking may not be encouraged – especially at a younger age – it is important to remember the difference between white hat and black hat activities.

Nowadays, with the increasing scale and complexity of cyberattacks, we need professional, ethical hackers to help us protect the day-to-day services we all use, and when it comes to younger people, especially with an interest in this. An area gift or two to encourage their entry into this world can be a great idea this holiday season.

Below we have created a list of themed gifts related to this profession, ranging from clothes to challenging pieces of a set that the hacker in your life will enjoy, regardless of their age or level of experience.

A must have for new skills


One of the best places to start if you are interested in cybersecurity is research, including the history of hacking, the overall threat landscape, and career opportunities. For someone who is passionate about the subject, Hacker Playbook 3: A Practical Guide To Penetration Testing, authored by Peter Kim, is considered a must-read for those interested in new techniques and acquiring new skills.

$ 29 on Amazon

Another must-read


Another book on every shelf of hackers that could make a great gift this year is Sandworm: A New Era of Cyberwar and the hunt for the most dangerous hackers in the Kremlin. Written by Andy Greenberg, the author examines cyberattacks that pose a threat to national and global security.

$ 13 on Amazon

A practical gift to start programming


A more practical Christmas 2020 gift for the hacker in your life is the Raspberry Pi 400, one of the newest models of the small computer. Suitable for those starting with programming, the budget device is available in a keyboard format and is equipped with 4GB of RAM. A few cables, a monitor and a mouse and you’re done.

$ 100 at Canakit

For those who are interested in network security


WiFi Pineapple Mark VII is a serious kit for automating the audit and analysis of the Wi-Fi network. Available as a budget starter product to corporate readiness, the device also has a number of useful applications and remote access capabilities.

$ 99 in Hak5


New clothes


For a fun gift this year for the hacker in your life, maybe a trip to Zero Day clothing is in order. The company offers a range of clothing for men and women plastered with slogans, cartoons and quotes related to cybersecurity.

See now in Zero Day clothing

Subscription boxes for employment of enthusiasts and hackers who make themselves


HackerBoxes is an interesting idea and something that can not only entertain hackers in the coming months, but also provide a way to challenge themselves. The gift subscription offers designs, components, modules, tools and elements ranging from printed circuit boards, transmitters and capacitors, which are replaced every month.

$ 44 at HackerBoxes

A gift for exploring the radio signal


KerberosSDR is a 4-tuner phase coherent RTL-SDR software, a defined radio station, perfect for any set of tools for hackers or enthusiasts. The radio kit, which uses custom operating software, can be used for applications, including radio direction, passive radar directions, and beamforming.

$ 249 in Othernet

Kit for serious network, signal enthusiasts


The HackRF One package is a software-defined radio that is described as “acting as a computer sound card.” The device can interact with a number of radio signals, including those transmitted via Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and mobile devices.

$ 319 on Amazon

Investment and gift


The Hak5 Essentials set would make a fantastic gift this Christmas. Although expensive, this kit should be considered an investment item that contains everything hackers need to get started. The Hak5 package includes WiFi Pineapple, USB Rubber Ducky, Shark Jack, Packet Squirrel and a variety of cables and other accessories.

$ 279 in Hak5

Need more gift ideas?

See ours ZDNet recommends a directory or Holiday gifts center for a little more inspiration.

Our sister sites also have the following gift guides: