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Ghost in the Wires Audiobook

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

Ghost in the Wires: My Adventures as the World’s Most Wanted Hacker is now in Channels.
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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 (5595 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Sverre Bangkok, Thailand 09-25-12
    Sverre Bangkok, Thailand 09-25-12 Member Since 2014

    a can read person

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fantastic story, much to learn"
    What made the experience of listening to Ghost in the Wires the most enjoyable?

    the fact that this is true life!


    What did you like best about this story?

    all the different things he actually did.. just like that.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    calling the guy in prison :)


    If you could give Ghost in the Wires a new subtitle, what would it be?

    Social Engineering Marvels, a history


    Any additional comments?

    everyone should read this, if only to learn what others could be doing to you

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stephen Balwyn North, IL, United States 09-24-12
    Stephen Balwyn North, IL, United States 09-24-12 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Incredible true story"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Ghost in the Wires to be better than the print version?

    Yes


    What did you like best about this story?

    Kevin Mitnick's amazing ability to manipulate people to provide his needs. It has made me aware of just how easy it is to obtain anything from anyone with a little research.


    What does Ray Porter bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    He read the story with the passion and pace as if you were actually inside Mitnick's mind.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    It was a thriller, rollercoaster lifestyle.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ron Centennial, CO, United States 09-24-12
    Ron Centennial, CO, United States 09-24-12 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fascinating story"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Ghost in the Wires to be better than the print version?

    Don't know


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Ghost in the Wires?

    I really cannot pick one. There were so many memorable moments as Mitnick seemingly talked his way into anywhere and figured out every telephone and computer system on earth. If it was fiction, people would say it was too incredible.


    Have you listened to any of Ray Porter’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Don't recall


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I cannot do that. I tend to listen to 2-3 hours at a time.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Roxanne G Mesquite, TX, United States 09-19-12
    Roxanne G Mesquite, TX, United States 09-19-12 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "No techie knowledge required!!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    LOVED this audio book. I have already recommended it to several people, including my husband who is an IT guy. It is so well read and easy to understand even all the technical stuff.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The narrator did an excellent job conveying this story. I went on youtube and listened to Kevin Mitnick during an interview. He could very easily have read this book aloud himself and the narrator was a perfect choice.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The scene toward the end at Kinko's when Kevin was almost caught. The emotion he felt about involving his grandmother comes through very well.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kjartan Reykjavik, Iceland 09-17-12
    Kjartan Reykjavik, Iceland 09-17-12 Listener Since 2010
    ratings
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    15
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    Story
    "Very well written and well read."
    What did you love best about Ghost in the Wires?

    Hearing how incredibly easy it was for Kevin to get sensitive information from pretty much anyone by basically just asking.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bonnie 09-16-12
    Bonnie 09-16-12 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Warning - Pick it up - can’t put it down"

    For the technical and non-technical it is a great read.

    It is not just about computer hacking it also covers “social engineering.” This is a term that I had never heard used. It is a nice way of saying “con man” or as Kevin Mitnick describes it in his book, “…the casual or calculated manipulation of people to influence them to do things they would not ordinarily do and convincing them without raising the least hint of suspicion."

    I am not a techy but I was hooked from the first chapter. It is an adventure as much as it is a true story about the exploits of a “black hacker”. Kevin Mitnick paints a vivid picture so that the reader comes to understand his addiction to hacking. I felt like I was right there with him and praying that he didn’t get caught.

    There are also some funny things like the claim of one law enforcement official who said that Mitnick could “launch ICBM's (inter-continental ballistic missiles) by whistling into the phone".

    Pick it up and you won’t put it down. Just a terrific book that I have recommended to others.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    LLarsen 09-16-12
    LLarsen 09-16-12

    LLarsen

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Could have been a good story but..."
    Any additional comments?

    This book downloaded in two parts and somehow got mixed up. I felt I started listening to the second part first, but couldn't be sure. Checked to see if that was the case. Couldn't find an answer. So for me, while the story was interesting, it jumped around and I couldn't follow the timeline. Too bad, it may have been a good story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gary 09-12-12
    Gary 09-12-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Wow - that is really interesting. Arrogant."

    OK - the story is fascinating. How easy it actually was.
    Social Engineering - I've done it a lot, but not anywhere near this guy's level!

    My problem is that he still thinks he's innocent.
    He really is disconnected from reality in that sense.
    What he did was wrong. Just flat out wrong.
    He needed therapy! Whacko!

    However, it is interesting to note that there wasn't mis-use of information, and that it
    an understood truth. But really, man?
    Law or not, the moral and ethical "sense" just wasn't there for this guy.

    I think that alone makes this an interesting book.

    History, insight, mixed with a typical maniac who couldn't control himself,
    was a bit out of touch with reality.
    This guy was one step away from serial killer, except he directed it into hacking.

    I like the story a LOT!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    lucia permowicz SAINT LOUIS, MO, US 09-10-12
    lucia permowicz SAINT LOUIS, MO, US 09-10-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Good story, good listen"
    What made the experience of listening to Ghost in the Wires the most enjoyable?

    I enjoyed the story and Ray Porter contributed to that.


    What does Ray Porter bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    I think he made the character more personalble.


    If you could give Ghost in the Wires a new subtitle, what would it be?

    Hacking, just becasue...


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Valya Watson 09-10-12 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Mitnick's Best so Far"

    I really enjoyed this book, more than Kevin's previous. I have many Audible books but this is one of the few I literally haven't been able to stop listening to til it was completed. Even sat in the parking lot, 15 minutes late for work to finish the ending.

    The narrator had perfect timing and inflection. You really thought you were listening to Kevin narrating his own book.

    Some will think there is too much detail included on the computer aspects, but I enjoyed those details the most. I also had no idea how much 'social engineering' is used to 'hack' into computer systems-real eye opener there.

    Also interesting, was Kevin's view point on his jail time and his 'setting the record straight' on the movie 'Take Down' and out and out lies and myths which unfairly colored his case. The 'Free Kevin' movement and other aspects of his personal life, his family who stood behind him while he was on the run really personalized the story beyond merely computer lingo.

    I highly recommend this book and hope there is another one in the works soon. I'm sure I'll listen to it again.

    Glad Kevin was able to turn his life around, as stated in the ending.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Olivier
    thouare sur loire, France
    2/29/12
    Overall
    "Excellent Text and Excellent Reader"

    This book was fascinating in that it showed that at least 50% of the "hacking" prowesses of Kevin Mitnick were what he calls "social engineering" and what most of us would call using psychology to trick people. No major technical prowess; just understanding how people think. Very enlightening for anyone concerned about IT security.

    In addition the reader of this book is excellent. One feels that it is Kevin Mitnick who is telling us his story directly. The only other time I kept on feeling that it was the author telling me his story rather than someone reading a book was for the Churchill WW2 Memoirs.

    13 of 13 people found this review helpful
  • Mr. G. Bridgeman-Clarke
    Rayleigh, United Kingdom
    8/30/12
    Overall
    "A treat to read and better then a James Bond novel"

    I read Kevin Mitnick's first book about hacking and I was hooked. its a great read, as is this book and it tells you so much about social engineering and how hackers do it. I naively though that they sat at the computer guessing passwords. If you think that then read this book. Its far easier to hack and break into a company's server then you could realise and though I assume that if this guy wasn't guilty he would not have been sent to jail, he tells a really goos storey about manipulating people to get people to give you access to company secrets.

    This is a tale about breaking in, and having to be on the run. There was a film of his encounters which was a flop but to be rank you need to read this to get to the real adventure. Its all here, secrets, FBI, mistrust, betrayal and finding new identities. Great.

    Loved it and hope there are other similar books out there for me to delve into.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Ross
    Harrogate, United Kingdom
    1/13/13
    Overall
    "The absolute obsession and love of the challenge.."

    The absolute obsession and love of the challenge rather than any financial gain is richly described in this deeply detailed account of Kevin Mitnick's life as one the original hackers and expert social engineers of the 80's. I'm sure others may dispute Kevin's version of events but it is both scary and scandalous how he is portrayed in both the courts and the media. He is no angel but some accusations levelled at him are not only rubbished by Mitnick but also shown to be completely implausible and utterly untrue! His skills as one of the original hackers are amazing and his audacity to social engineer people is breath taking. The sheer joy he gets from taking on a hacking challenge and succeeding is described in rich detail and it makes for an exhilarating, roller coaster listen.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Bill
    London, United Kingdom
    12/23/12
    Overall
    "Next time you credit card company phones..."

    Listen to it. Learn about social engineering. Understand why you should be sceptical with phone calls claiming to be from your bank, your credit card company and/or your mobile phone company. All they want is your date of birth, the first line of your address and your post code. Hello Kevin! This book is cool.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • g.l.ward
    Lincoln, United Kingdom
    7/9/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Close but no cigar"
    Would you listen to Ghost in the Wires again? Why?

    Sadly no, even though this book was well written and amazingly actually based on real life events that kept me listening to just one more chapter finished leaving me with no real closure.
    Obviously very clever Kevin Mitnicks crimes eventually come to grow a pointless and as a reader I ended up hoping for him to get caught just for some variety. A very clever man with one hell of a story to tell but I personally only want to hear it once.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Ghost in the Wires?

    Without giving too much away the most memorable moment in Ghost in the wire, was the fugitive tacking the FBI, the way he went around it was genius.


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

    Kevin Mitnick, this is the only choice really as it is only Mitnicks side of the story that is retold.


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Firstly sheer disbelief, with what he had the guts to do. As most of the crimes are repetitive a ended the book in frustration.


    Any additional comments?

    Kevin Mitnick gets information from people by basically lying to them. It is called social engineering in the book, social engineering to get information out of people to use to your own advantage. I just wonder if you replaced every reference of social engineering with the word lying if Kevin Mitnick would come across as such a likable person? A good listen but I wouldn't recommend it to anyone without a technical background.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • David
    Loughton, United Kingdom
    12/31/12
    Overall
    "Staggering"

    The life of Kevi Mitnik unfolds like a Jason Bourne story but without people getting killed. Whether or not you approve of hacking you cannot help holding this man in awe in terms of his high intelligence and his incredible audacity. Also, the narration by Ray Porter is superb. Highly recommended.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Charles
    Chippenham, United Kingdom
    12/23/12
    Overall
    "Not just for Geeks and Nerds!"

    Ghost in the wires is a fast paced story of how Kevin Mintnick evades and escapes the police and FBI after being a caught numerous time hacking into various different organisations computer networks.



    I really enjoyed listening to this book. You genuinely feel an attached towards Kevin, and you don't want him to et caught. He is honest with the reader and doesn't embellish being on the run, he tells it how it was, make helps you appreciate the loneliness and isolation that he felt.



    Ghost in the wires is not a book that I would normally choose to read, but I enjoyed every page. For this reason I gave it 5 stars.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • D
    ST NEOTS, United Kingdom
    12/8/12
    Overall
    "A brilliant Audio Book"

    Once I started listening to this Audio Book I couldn't stop and until I got to the end I thought it was actually Kevin Mitnick reading it! This is a brilliant audio book from start to finish and I would highly recommend it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • MR
    Aldershot, United Kingdom
    6/15/12
    Overall
    "Gripping"

    I wasn't sure i would like this, But after the first hour i was hooked. I actually listened to it in about 2-3 days as i could not STOP listening, its such an interesting story and very exciting, I could also tell there is an effort to explain it to people who are not tech smart, which is nice (not that i needed it). Its actually one of the best books i've had the pleasure of listening to.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • L. H. De Laune
    UK
    10/21/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "unremorseful criminal..."
    Any additional comments?

    I started off enjoying this story, - Kevin's cleverness and undoubted skills make for interesting reading. However he has made a fortune out of lying to people and taking great delight in tricking other people- who trust him. He really enjoys making people look stupid. it is very telling that some of his closest friends also betray him...He never sees this as a personal character flaw - in fact every time his behaviour is challenged he reverts to 'poor old me'. The two most salient factors that absolutely turned me OFF were when he stole the identities of dead babies, without a thought to how this would impact any families involved in those tragic events. Secondly, several time he mentions the tole his life choices have taken on his Mother & Grandmother- he calls on them every time he gets into trouble, but he never thinks to alter his behaviour, change his choices, in fact every time he gets a steady job, he 'just can't help' & 'just to see if I can' and ends up getting fired again. I couldn't wait to see him locked up, but he seems to fall on his feet right to the end. This book made my blood boil, I ended up intensely disliking the author.

    4 of 8 people found this review helpful

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