We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access .
 >   > 
Ghost in the Wires Audiobook

Ghost in the Wires: My Adventures as the World’s Most Wanted Hacker

Regular Price:$25.17
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential - Ghost in the Wires is a thrilling story of hair's-breadth escapes, brazen sociopathy, and ultimately redemption. What's more, it's all true. Ray Porter expertly narrates the stranger than fiction autobiography of Kevin Mitnick as he recounts how he went from gaming the LA bus system for free rides to gaining unauthorized access to the most secure corporate computer systems in the world, all the while playing cat and mouse with the FBI. —Michael

Publisher's Summary

Kevin Mitnick was the most elusive computer break-in artist in history. He accessed computers and networks at the world’s biggest companies—and however fast the authorities were, Mitnick was faster, sprinting through phone switches, computer systems, and cellular networks. He spent years skipping through cyberspace, always three steps ahead and labeled unstoppable. But for Kevin, hacking wasn’t just about technological feats—it was an old fashioned confidence game that required guile and deception to trick the unwitting out of valuable information.

Driven by a powerful urge to accomplish the impossible, Mitnick bypassed security systems and blazed into major organizations including Motorola, Sun Microsystems, and Pacific Bell. But as the FBI’s net began to tighten, Kevin went on the run, engaging in an increasingly sophisticated cat-and-mouse game that led through false identities, a host of cities, plenty of close shaves, and to an ultimate showdown with the feds, who would stop at nothing to bring him down.

Ghost in the Wires is a thrilling true story of intrigue, suspense, and unbelievable escape and a portrait of a visionary whose creativity, skills, and persistence forced the authorities to rethink the way they pursued him, inspiring ripples that brought permanent changes in the way people and companies protect their most sensitive information.

©2011 Kevin Mitnick. Foreword 2011 by Steve Wozniak (P)2011 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What the Critics Say

“Intriguing, insightful, and extremely educational into the mind of one who truly mastered the art of social engineering with the use of a computer and modern-day technologies. I strongly believe that one can learn a great deal about protecting themselves once they understand how another one perpetrates the crime.” (Frank W. Abagnale, author of Catch Me If You Can)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (6041 )
5 star
 (3407)
4 star
 (1811)
3 star
 (579)
2 star
 (162)
1 star
 (82)
Overall
4.4 (5417 )
5 star
 (3229)
4 star
 (1404)
3 star
 (564)
2 star
 (151)
1 star
 (69)
Story
4.5 (5403 )
5 star
 (3250)
4 star
 (1572)
3 star
 (443)
2 star
 (90)
1 star
 (48)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Brian 05-26-15
    Brian 05-26-15

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    117
    10
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Very bold and candid"
    What made the experience of listening to Ghost in the Wires the most enjoyable?

    It felt like I was sitting in a coffee shop with Kevin Mitnick hearing his story first hand. His casual tone made for a compelling story in a typically dry genre.


    What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

    The examples of the social engineering and the preparation required for parts of it was fascinating. Sometimes luck was involved but there is a great amount of skill required.


    What’s the most interesting tidbit you’ve picked up from this book?

    The myth of Kevin Mitnick was ridiculous, it had little basis and made ridiculous claims.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Keith 10-31-13
    Keith 10-31-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
    43
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    296
    30
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I don't suffer narcissism well ..."

    I find myself almost scared to write this review for fear that Kevin Mitnick will hack into my life and -- using some contorted interpretation of ethics -- make my life a living hell.

    I do not care for his brand of nerdy selfishness, which sets its own rules at the emotional expense of others. While true that Mitnick may not have stolen material possessions from the people whose privacy he intruded on, I must say that I really feel bad for his victims, and the turmoil that resulted (I especially feel bad for his family, "Ann" at the SSA, et al, and the others he manipulated over and over again).

    The story is one of a kid who becomes a hacker back in the pre-Internet days of dial-up telephones, old-school modems, and mainframe computer systems, although his primary means of law-breaking was through manipulation of people's trust (his social engineering practices). At first I found his story entertaining because it had sentimental quality, and a childlike innocence that, perhaps, could've been forgiven. But as the story wore on I found myself hoping he would get busted.

    He did, eventually get busted, but Mitnick seems to lack a sense of self-reflection necessary to make his plight sympathetic; in fact, just the opposite is the case here: He is arrogant, self-righteous and condescending. He seems to seek sympathy and understanding for being treated unfairly while failing to realize that trust has to be earned. During the course of this memoir he did not earn my trust. The book consists of far too much whining, not enough contrition.

    Would I recommend it? In a way, yes, because it is a solid warning to others not to venture down the road of the hacker and, much more importantly, a cautionary tale about the fact that our actions really and truly can hurt others even if we do not gain wealth from those actions.

    The narrator, by the way, is outstanding. His reading of this biography made it a worthwhile purchase.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Greg Edmonton, AB, Canada 09-26-13
    Greg Edmonton, AB, Canada 09-26-13 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
    14
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    23
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Yawwn.."
    What would have made Ghost in the Wires better?

    This book has great reviews and I was excited to get my ears on it. I got about 70% through and decided I'd had enough. There are very few, if any "thrilling" moments. If you enjoy a guy talking about how he uses social engineering to trick people into giving him confidential information over the phone and then repeat that story over and over again.. this might be your cup of tea.


    14 of 18 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tim Poulsbo, WA, United States 08-26-13
    Tim Poulsbo, WA, United States 08-26-13 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    95
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    246
    99
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    6
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Sure he's a paranoid narcissist, but what a story"
    What made the experience of listening to Ghost in the Wires the most enjoyable?

    The sheer nerve of this guy. What he calls "social engineering" is nothing more than scamming and capitalizing on peoples trust. The fact that he, reportedly, did not take financial advantage of people for monetary gain (with the exception of the radio call in scam) carries some weight. While he probably greatly embellishes some of his exploits, he really doesnt need to. His understanding of the technology of the time (late 1980's and early 1990's) is amazing and his manipulation of that technology and the people surrounding it is the story (that and his paranoia)


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    No.. this is not a "moving" book. Its about a techy genus with an associated personality disorder. He admits, only in passing, early in the book that he was molested as a child, and never mentions it again. I'm certain the nurture/nature influences both teamed up to make him a uniquely damaged soul. He seems to be nearly sociopathic as he uses one person after another to get information or resources that help him move through his paranoid life, without a single guilty look backwards. In fact in the end he rants about the unfairness of the legal system and how he was badly treated, while leaving a wake of victims behind him.


    Any additional comments?

    In the end, I have to say it was a very compelling story, couldnt put it down.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    mindusq san francisco 01-22-13
    mindusq san francisco 01-22-13 Member Since 2008

    Typical cat lady: lazy, sings off-key, craves spicy bloody marys.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    338
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    437
    65
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    39
    6
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Glimpse into hacking by World's Biggest Egomaniac"

    Kudos to Ray Porter for breathing life into Kevin Mitnick's detailed account of how he fooled the world and thumbed his nose at giant tech companies just for sport. His insatiable curiosity, exceptional persistance and gigantic ego are just the right combo to achieve what he did [read: break the law & disrespect other people's rights and privacy].

    It's really not great writing but his audacity is fascinating and what's also shocking is how gullible people can be. He couldn't have done most of it without people's basic nature to believe that someone is telling them the truth.

    Yet, the person most snowed by Mitnick is Mitnick. He's really just a self-centered, egomaniac who gives lip service to caring about others or justifying his hacking but is really convinced he's better than everyone else.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brian 11-22-12
    Brian 11-22-12

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    59
    6
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Unbearable"

    I could not get through this book.

    There is a real story here, but perhaps it should have been written by someone else. There is an arrogance in both the writing and even the tone of the narrator that was unbearable. I would have liked to hear something from other people involved for the sake of authenticity. There were several points in the story that did not seem to ring true. Each time, Mitnick chalks this up to incredible coincidence or luck.

    Not Recommended.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Daniel E Schawinsky Kaneohe, HI United States 11-19-12
    Daniel E Schawinsky Kaneohe, HI United States 11-19-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "half n half"
    What did you like best about Ghost in the Wires? What did you like least?

    Fun story of a clearly interesting and genious character. For the technologically inclined and interested even the lengthy and repeated descriptions of all the phone hacking details might be borderline boring. They were for me. For tose not so inclined it will likely be a real chore. The book does not really get going until the second half have been condensed to half the length.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julie 11-14-12
    Julie 11-14-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    53
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Compulsively Hacking, Hacking Compulsively"
    What did you like best about Ghost in the Wires? What did you like least?

    A repetitious book, certainly not as much fun as reading about a Shopaholic. So if you like repetitive stories about compulsive people who are also master of manipulating people, then this is your book.


    Which character – as performed by Ray Porter – was your favorite?

    Excellent performance by Ray Porter and he was the only I stuck with this audible book.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Scooter 04-16-12
    Scooter 04-16-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
    22
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    127
    16
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Mitnick's Self-Pity Gets Old"

    Narration great.
    Story interesting, but Mitnick's self-pity gets old. The guy was a criminal doing lots of economic damage.

    I almost gave up on the book because the simultaneous "the government is being unfair" and "excuse me while I steal Sun Microsystem's source code while hacking into Pacific Bell's phone switch to illegally eavesdrop on calls." was just a bit much.

    Also, even though I'm a technologist, the recitation of commands and phone numbers did not work well for an audiobook.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Patricia 02-23-12
    Patricia 02-23-12

    Can there be any better pasttime than reading? Audiobook, regular book, e-book - I have 1 of each going at all times.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    90
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    39
    19
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    2
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "The Epitome of Denial"

    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.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Amazon Customer
    3/29/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A must read for either techie or non techie"

    This was an excellent read, honest and extremely fascinating.
    If my car journey had been longer I would have listened to it in one go!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Thomas Pinder
    2/2/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A repetitive, arrogant and unrepentant story"

    Kevin Mitnick is clearly a very talented social engineer, not necessarily a hacker. The story goes in a familiar loop: hacks company, claims to just obtain source code, gets caught, either goes to prison or runs. There is no evidence of remorse from Mitnick for the crimes he's clearly commited and lots of unanswered questions - where did the Israeli hacker dissaper to? Overall I would not recommend, bland, frustrating and repetitive.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Loughlin
    12/8/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Riveting"

    This was an amazing book - thoroughly enjoyed it and its narrated in such a way that you would think you are actually hearing Mitnick himself reading to you. The guy is obviously a genius but his writing style is very laid back and humble. If you are into technology or even if you're not I would highly recommend this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Kiri
    12/8/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Not great for non-tech people"

    Some of this story was fascinating, ie, the human aspects. But so much of this was technical jargon that it interrupted the story and I lost interest. I do know how to use a computer but this was constant detail about processes.

    The narrator was good, and I did get to the end but it wasn't my thing. I imagine that if you have done some hacking in the past, or even some higher spec computer stuff, then you might love it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Tony O
    London, UK
    9/30/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Riveting! Captivating! Amazing! Insightful!"

    Didn't wanna put this down & loved the hair raising pace. An awe inspiring insight into the electronic world of computer, phone systems & social engineering; complexed systems most of us take for granted.

    Kevin Mitnick is a genius.

    Kevin's motivation & ethics for hacking are admirably intriguing. In my books he's a 'top man'.

    If you've the slightest interest in computer systems, security or social engineering this book is a Must Read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Trevor
    Camblesforth, United Kingdom
    9/6/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Riveting Listen"

    Have to say this is a damn good listen. The narrater really does bring the story to life. Its quite an unbelievable story, and one really you would believe to be the work of fiction had you not heard of Kevin Mitnick before. Its one of those books that you keep shouting "don't do it" as Kevin constantly gets himself deeper and deeper. Without giving too much away, it has to be a must listen for anyone in computing, just to know how these guys hack into systems. Its not just down to their technical skills, as the book explains. Very good read, and really enlightening as to how these guys can get into systems as easily as they do.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Adam Fearn
    8/18/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Top ten audio book"

    Up there with the best. Amazing story - with a couple of jaw dropping moments. Whilst you don't have to be technical to appreciate the book, it helps. Ray Porter nails the narration. He really lives the story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • TechieEnchilada
    7/13/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Amazing story for the IT nerd"

    If this was simply an adventure story set in the world of IT & Telephony it would have been good, but as its real the story has so much more depth. The fastest book I've listened to, I've shunned friends, TV and listened almost non stop between work and family commitments.

    The narration fits the story as though Leven is talking to me.
    Wow.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    Tramore Ireland
    6/3/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Fantastic storey."

    i couldn't turn it off I was a roller coaster ride from beginning to end.
    you could learn a lot from Kevin.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Charly Webster
    London
    5/25/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I enjoyed it, very informational"

    You could tell that this was written by somebody with a passion for the topic. The level of detail that the book goes into when explaining the exploits for me was a only slight negative. I didn't feel the need to know what all of the numbers were for the different dial up modems or exchange, this information would be good starting but it continued all the way through.

    It was interesting to find out about his life and adventures, I just wish that more content after his final release as it felt like the ending was rushed.

    Overall amazing book, I would highly recommend it to all readers/listeners and I will be looking into some of his others (The art of deception).

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank you.

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.