Ghost in the Wires: My Adventures as the World's Most Wanted Hacker
If they were a hall of fame or shame for computer hackers, a Kevin Mitnick plaque would be mounted the near the entrance. While other nerds were fumbling with password possibilities, this adept break-artist was penetrating the digital secrets of Sun Microsystems, Digital Equipment Corporation, Nokia, Motorola, Pacific Bell, and other mammoth enterprises. His Ghost in the W...more
by Kevin D. Mitnick
Kevin Mitnick is not really a hacker. He’s more of a nerdy scam artist with a massive ego. Many other reviewers have described this book better than I can. They believe Kevin Mitnick is a sociopath and I agree. He is extremely proud of his “social-engineering” skills (his ability to lie to people convincingly).
All of his scams are fairly similar.
1. Mitnick calls an administrative office of a corporation, pret ...more
The good: Mitnick's story is legendary, and while I get the feeling he isn't always 100% honest, this is probably the closest we'll ever get to the true story without embellishments and ridiculous rumors. As Mitnick points out several times in his own story, his escapades are remarkable enough without the crazy rumors that grew around his legend over the years.
As a hacke ...more
Mitnick was born in Van Nuys, California in 1963 and by the age of twelve he was already developing the art of ‘social engineering’ (or manipulation of individuals) ...more
The subject matter was something I was looking forward to getting into, imagining a book of hacking adventure and in ...more
Granted, I am a "technologically-inclined" sort of person, but this book appears to have been written to appeal to both "techies" and "non-techies" alike. Techies will appreciate the relative simplicity of the incredible hacks that Mitnick managed to pull off, while non-techies will gape in astonishment at the achievements and audacity that these hacks involve ...more
I hack, You betray, He accelerates the collapse of society.
which about sums up Ghost in the Wires.
A big shout-out, props, and whatever else the cool kids are saying nowadays when they want to show respect to William L. Simon, Mitnick's “co-author”. Mitnick shows no evidence of ever having read a book for the sheer joy of it, nor even writing a letter or a note on a refrigerator witho ...more
I further felt mislead because the prologue was an incredibly interesting two-man B&E into a corporation that he was paid to infiltrate as a security consultant. Once the actual novel started, there wasn't another paragraph nearly as interesting as the prologue. More specifically, most of his hacking was phone " ...more
I will leave whatever social sickness the brilliant Kevin Mitnick has to the mental health professionals, but suffice it to say that his writing in Ghost in the Wires is a terrific nonfiction example of an "unreliable narrator." Throughout the book, Mitnick does the same things over an ...more
I ended up rereading this book with a few friends after attempting to pick something they would hopefully enjoy that they wouldn't have read otherwise. The jury is still out, but it looks like I might have done a poor job. I enjoyed the reread, but this book won't be for everyone.
I've always been fascinated by the early days of computers and the internet, especially where ...more
Full disclosure: I found 2600 magazine in high school (among the zines at a local indie record store, fortunately) and had several Free Kevin stickers. The downright illegal means used by law enforcement to pursue Mitnick, and the legal system's irrationality and unjust punishment of him, provided o ...more
*Future events are given away sometimes chapters ahead of time like when he compares his flight from Denver to his flight from the South.
*A lot of crappy figures of speech like "hit me like a ton of bricks". You ...more
The story of Mitnick's hacking, his two and a half year evasion of the police and FBI and his subsequent trial is constantly engaging and occasionally exciting, filled with tips, quirky asides, and the occasional bit of jargon pitched ...more
The book is by Kevin Mitnick about his adventures in hacking. I would definitely not call the book well written but I did find his life fascinating. He started hacking as a teenager and never stopped. He's as addicted to it as one might be to heroine. No exaggeration. Despite being arrested ...more
This biography was lava-hot recommended by the one of the co-founders of our tech company when a portion of us (me included) rebelled against introduction of policies. This introduction felt almost like a betrayal of trust (that as an employee I felt went both ways up to that point) and ...more
All of these good aspects put the worst part of the book in sharp relief: Mitnick is a sociopath. I'd sooner read the sympathetic diaries of John Wayne Gacy than revisit Mr. Mitnick. On top of which he spends most ...more
I'm not that much into biographies but I gave this a go as a group read. It had some interesting elements but overall the subject matter didn't interest me. I think it would appeal to people like software engineers and other hackers ...more
it needed a thorough edit which would have trimmed the length of the book by at least a third ... citing just one example, long strings of code interrupt the flow of the story and except for highly technical readers, are an irritation. The story is lost in this emphemera.
Mitnick is 98% unlikeable - the thing that I most dislike is his dishonesty, and I feel listeners are being taken for a ride. Clever clogs Mitnick likes to dress his manipulation, d ...more
This book may have some historic value, as it describes beginnings of the internet and importance of land lines in development of the computer ...more
This is a biography, which means it's laid out from Mitnick's point of view and chronicles his life, obviously paying special attention to the computer hacking parts...which you will find out made up about 110% of his life anyway. It starts out with Kevin's b ...more
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