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Take-Down: The Pursuit and Capture of Kevin Mitnick, America's Most Wanted Computer Outlaw--By the Man Who Did It
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Take-Down: The Pursuit and Capture of Kevin Mitnick, America's Most Wanted Computer Outlaw--By the Man Who Did It

3.26  ·  Rating Details ·  367 Ratings  ·  20 Reviews
A world-renowned computer security expert gives his personal account of the thrilling and ingenius capture of the Internet's most notorious cyberthief--Kevin Mitnick--in a gripping drama which illuminates the good, the bad, and the ugly of the computer world. Photos.
Hardcover, 324 pages
Published February 1st 1996 by Hyperion Books (first published January 1996)
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(showing 1-30)
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May 02, 2013 Doug rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book because I'm a computer professional, and I was a big fan of the movie. But the book suffers from Tsutomu's lack of objectivity.

The story of the *movie* is: Silicon Valley hotshot learns deep and valuable life lessons while getting taken down a peg by a greasy computer genius.

The story of the *book* is: Poor Tsutomu. Even after co-opting the entire California academic computing community (without pay), the lowlife shittiness of Kevin Mitnick somehow allows him to evade capture. T
I read the Dutch version of Takedown. Although it is an interesting story about the hunt for Kevin Mitnick, I was more interested in the technical aspects of the story then the writing. This may never become a classic or a top-10 book for me, but regarding hacking, social engineering and security related issues, this is a pretty okay book. Though I must say that I will still prefer The Cuckoo's Egg by Clifford Stoll!
Jan 29, 2013 C M rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition

90% of the author patting himself on the back for being such an awesome human being, 10% interesting story about Mitnick's capture.
Nick Black
hehehe, so very self-serving. shimomura ought have focused more on his skillful work and less on his snowboarding and big pimpin'. what a douchebag.
Jul 29, 2012 Brian rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Movie was better then book.
Joe White
Aug 11, 2014 Joe White rated it really liked it
Review Takedown 8/11/14

Tsutomu Shimomura
4 stars; with serious reservations

If you can make it through the first half of this book, then the end does become more of a suspenseful thriller based loosely on facts. Tsutomu's arrogance and his revelations regarding personal preferences in food and recreation require a reader attention work-around. The issues with Julia and John Gilmore were a grating waste of paper. She must have brought something to the table for Tsutomu, but the reader may be shout
I decided to read this book after having read a book called Ghost in the Wires, written by Kevin Mitnick, the notorious computer hacker who was apprehended in 1995. Takedown recounts the story from the point of view of Tsutomu Shimomura (with John Markoff). He is the computer expert who was hacked by Mitnick and succeeded in tracking him down, in conjunction with the FBI. The book is a little bit like the Cuckoo's Egg. I didn't feel it was quite as good as either Ghost in the Wires or the Cuckoo ...more
Jamshid Faryar
This story is from the early days of the internet, reaching even farther back to the early days of personal computers... which made it interesting rather than out of date. Kevin Mitnick, the outlaw and villain in the story, is today a security consultant and author. The authors' accounts (in "layman's terms") of Tsutomu Shimomura's work and background (in neural network and parallel computing), sort of a curriculum vitae introducing the narrator, were interesting, and the chase (both on the inte ...more
Jan 06, 2011 Nak rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was a fun read. Autobiographical point of view of the pursuer vs. the pursued. I read this quite a few years ago, what sticks out in my memory is Kevin Mitnick's condition when he was finally caught by the police (in sweats and he had to make a barf, cause it was really an intense point in his life.) and Mitnick's egging on of his pursuer ("Your kung fu is no good!")
As a computer nerd I really had fun on the adventure this book took me on! It's accessible with a minimal of technical te
Oct 02, 2015 L-ssar rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bastante interesante el cómo (supuestamente) se consiguió capturar a Kevin Mitnick contado desde el punto de vista de su cazador. Algo que no me gusta es que el autor siempre señala errores de otros colaboradores y agentes y él parece que nunca se equivoca. Habrá que leer la otra parte de la historia para hacerme una idea mejor (porque a Mitnick lo deja como script kiddie de segunda xD)

No cometáis el mismo error que yo: ni se os ocurra leer la traducción al castellano ¡JÓRRIBOL!
As a techie I bought this book and read it 5 times.This book is amazing. What I liked best of this book is the sequence of events which have been nicely scripted. Shimomura tracked down Kevin not because he was responsible for breaking into Computers, but because of curiosity how Kevin managed to do this while evading everyone on the earth.

Great book.
Apr 20, 2016 Ken rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Man, what a crappy book. For one, I was rooting for Mitnick. And Shimomura comes across as such a self-aggrandizing douchebag. I hated him throghout the book. Stoll's "Cuckoo's Egg" is much better, even though he too comes across as rather pleased with himself and you don't get to hear the other side.
Feb 17, 2009 David rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-1996
Shimomura has a huge ego. It's plastered all over this book. You will never again see the term "ankle-biter" this many times in print (unless somebody publishes something called "Ankle-Bite!: An Ankle-Biter's Tale of Ankle-Biting").

If anyone reads this book, please count the number of times "ankle-biter" is used and give us the tally. Inquiring minds want to know!
Mar 17, 2008 Eight rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I considered it as a good book when i read it almost 10 years ago. If you read it now you would probably see that the most interesting part is to read the various types of hack that mitnick did. The traditional method of password phising, dialtone playing to hack telephone system and how the internet was 10 ten years ago. Jargon and terms which some are becoming a nostalgic by today standards
Nov 21, 2014 Muramura rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shimomura is just another egoistic duch. He thinks too great of himself as he went to Princeton, CALTECH, but that's because of his dad, not because of his own skill set and this book is a clean signature for it. Period.
Aug 22, 2011 Disa rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
A big fan of Kevin Mitnick, I wanted to read all I could, even the hyperbole. This book and film contained so many errors among the few facts they mustered that were true, most of this account has been utterly refuted by the FBI and Kevin himself.
Aug 16, 2011 Jeremy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I just saw an excerpt from Kevin Mitnick's new book and remembered reading Takedown many years ago. Very enjoyable. Some may not like the author's style, but if you are a geek, it will interest you at least some what.
Andy Chu
Mar 14, 2010 Andy Chu rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Good writing about an intrinsically interesting story. It wasn't too watered down for a non-technical audience.
Eric Deering
Eric Deering rated it really liked it
Dec 10, 2015
Jeremy rated it liked it
Mar 22, 2010
Dave rated it it was ok
Sep 04, 2013
Jim Shearer
Jim Shearer rated it liked it
Sep 09, 2013
Aquarium rated it really liked it
Apr 29, 2009
Nick Gervais
Nick Gervais rated it did not like it
Nov 15, 2012
Matt rated it it was amazing
Jun 15, 2012
Bob Christianson
Bob Christianson rated it liked it
Dec 31, 2013
ghostshadow rated it did not like it
Mar 31, 2012
Alessandro Cumin
Alessandro Cumin rated it it was amazing
May 21, 2014
Kenny Parnell
Kenny Parnell rated it really liked it
Jan 15, 2014
Chuin rated it liked it
Feb 11, 2016
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