The story about Kevin Mitnick is definitely interesting. And it's absolutely amazing (and scary!) to know how easy it is for someone with the right social skills (not even computer skills) to obtain confidential personal information from others. However, as interesting as it may be, I didn't find the story as gripping as other audiobooks. I guess I just didn't connect with the character. And the fact the author keeps reminding you every 15 minutes how brilliant and awesome he is, makes it hard to do so.
The other part I find disturbing with the book is that, even though the author was illegally accessing information and hacking into numerous systems, he doesn't seem to think there's anything wrong with it. He points out that he never profitted from his hacking (apart from probably racking up thousands of dollars in phone bills using other people's numbers), but that still does not make it right. He turned his hacking around into a consulting business, and his story into a speaking career, and you have to give him credit for that. But he didn't give me the impression he realized what he did was wrong. He just found a way to get (legally) paid for it!
For someone who enjoys reading technical materials, this book would be great. For someone who reads to relax and get away from technical materials - the story is very interesting - but you can skip all but the first few chapters and the last 2 chapters.
Didn't care at all for this. The author's arrogance was insufferable and annoying. I didn't past 2 1/2 hours before I couldn't take it any more. Thought I would like it better based on the reviews and subject.
affiliate marketer in training
This is one of the most fascinating non-fiction stories I have "read". From a simple fascination and curiosity as to how the phone system worked, Kevin Mitcnick found himself in the middle of a real life "Catch Me If You Can." Always one step ahead of everyone else, his addiction to hacking eventually did him in. I don't know how he could sleep at night knowing that every moment could be has last free one.
The narrator, Ray Porter, was phenomenal. He was so natural that at times I felt he was talking right to me.
Can there be any better pasttime than reading? Audiobook, regular book, e-book - I have 1 of each going at all times.
Denial actually IS a river in Egypt - at least if you listen to this book. Full of ego, euphemisms (social engineering = scamming) and lack of remorse, Mitnick portrays himself as a genius who was made miserable by laws and a government who just didn't understand him. The only reason I made it all the way through the book was to see if he would finally take responsibility and realize that every bit of what happened to him was due to his hacking addiction. Alas, no. He sets himself above the law because he claims he never made any money off his hacking skills. If you trust a guy who revels in his con artistry, maybe that's true. He still earned every bit of the jail time he served.
There are two main problems with this book:
- 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, deceit, guile and lying to people under the guise of the term
I realize that I am in the minority. Having an IT background myself, I thought this would be a great listen. I couldn't finish it. Like the song lyrics.."poor poor pitiful me" is the theme replayed throughout the book. If I heard the words "socially engineered" one more time, I was going to have to stop listening, which I did. Most of the first half of the book is devoted to telephone company hacking. And more of the same. Sorry, I wouldnt recommend this. "Catch me if you can" while not my favorite book, was a better listen.
I am halfway through and it is unlikely I will finish. Mitnick is a complete prick and his story should not be celebrated.
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What do you get when you mix A TON of guts with some brains, sprinkled with a little luck? This incredible story!!
At times while listening to this book, I wanted to walk away but couldn't quite. As from a bloviator at a party telling a gripping yet repellent story, I had to hear the end. Audibles are a different experience than reads so maybe it was due to superb narration that I stuck it out. Ray Porter overcomes blah writing and puts you in the room with Kevin Mitnick. Unfortunately, even with the sexy topic of computer hacking, he's terrible company. This is a tragedy of wasted talent and fraud.