He keeps the action going through the story. It was nice seeing where a lot of the odd business security rules originate from and how though the information by itself is small and innocuous, as part of a bigger plan it can be devastating! Thanks for sharing Kevin! As others stated the narrator was a great fit for this book keeping the material realistic and dramatic. I highly recommend this book.
No one moment rather it contained many exciting moments which remember, this is a "non-fiction" book.
like a great biography.
If I were in a seat, I'd have been on the edge of it the whole way. Great story.
The best narration I've ever experienced. Ray became Kevin. Kevin Mitnick himself could not have told the story better.
First, let me say Mitnick is a whiner and pretty much everything that happened to him he had coming to him.
Now with that said it doesn't take away from that fact that this is a fascinating book. It moves fairly quickly, it doesn't require any technical knowledge to make sense but he does throw in a couple of things here and there for the more technically inclined and he's able to keep up the suspense throughout.
Many of pranks Kevin pulls are very funny, most are harmless, many are ingenious and in some cases I believe he's being extremely disingenuous with the reader by claiming he never profited (which is true) but still he passed along things like credit card numbers to people who he knew were not the good guys -- or at least that's what it sounded like from the way he described his 'trading'.
Mitnick does whine here and there but thankfully it's normally pretty short. He wonders why the FBI just won't leave him alone even though he continues to break the law over and over.
The reader does a great job, I've heard other books by Porter and he's a 5-star guy.
Overall I'd recommend this book to just about anyone.
I got increasingly engrossed in this story until I didn't want to stop listening. It's suspenseful and intricate, and the amazing level of detail added authenticity. Sometimes when authors offer incredible detail of past events I become suspicious that they're filling in gaps in their memory by just inventing things. But I never got that sense in this book. Mitnick not only has an astounding memory and ability to recount these tales, but also had access to documentation to help fill in facts he may not remember fully.
At first I was disappointed that it was not so much about technical hacking as much as "social engineering" (mostly lying to people over the phone). Though he's highly technically proficient, his main weapon is an ability to convince people to give him their passwords or otherwise grant him access to sensitive systems by pretending to be a fellow employee. But as the story went on he got more into the technical details (mostly related to phone system switches and computers), and I was fully sucked in. His explanations of how he spied on the people spying on him, or unveiled the true identities of undercover informants, are not only impressive but suspenseful as well. And since he was never hacking for financial gain or to damage anything, I enjoyed rooting for him despite the nuisance he caused.
He also manages to recount all these stories without sounding overly braggadocious or cocky, which is not an easy feat. His techniques are extremely clever, even if they didn't always prevent him from being caught. Though his string of legal issues seems to spring from his lack of willpower to stop hacking rather than a carelessness to cover his tracks.
I also loved Ray Porter's narration and look forward to listening to other books from him.
I couldn't sleep at night because I became so enthralled by this book. Very good listen.
I have not read the print version.
Having heard much about Kevin's story it was nice to get the telling straight through his words. I like how he expressed joy in the learning of information and conquering of security while at the same time maintaining he was not using his knowledge for personal gain.
Porter was very fluid in his reading and rarely stumbles, even in long technical sentences.
This is a prime example, perhaps THE prime example, of how people fear that which they do not understand. Kevin Mitnick is a hacker by nature. Somehow the word "hacker" became a synonym in the modern lexicon as "criminal" or "thief". Kevin hacked to understand, to gain knowledge, to defeat the barrier of what corporations think everyone should know. He did not use it for personal wealth or fame. He did it because he enjoyed. I am glad that after a tumultuous life Kevin is successful in his writing and security consulting career and I wish him the best.
Compelling, Funny, Fascinating
Yes. Though the technical details can be a bit overwhelming sometimes, he always ties in why it's pertinent to know them.
As a banker we are forced to become familiar with various social engineering techniques because of people like Kevin Mitnick. It was amazing to hear how these tactics have worked, and reminded me to keep on my toes a bit.
Ray Porter - his inflections and reading are spot on. He makes it seem as though this is his memoir. He's been good in others and so-so in some but this was perfect material for him. Enjoyable listen. Parts of this could have been insanely boring but the authors and narrator did a good job conveying the technical details with out putting you to sleep.
Not really a book but as others have noted, this is the geek version of Catch Me If You Can.
The author (Mitnick) is arrogant, yes. That's his personality and what enabled him to pull off most of what he did so there's no way to take that out of the book. And a bit whiny. But looking past that, it's quite fascinating what he was able to talk people into and what info he could talk them out of.
Yes, very interesting story of telephone and computer hacking. Enough technical details to keep it interesting without overload. Plenty of his personal life and problems.
On the human side, it is the story of smart but spoiled immature kid who becomes a spoiled immature adult.