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.
“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)
This account demonstrates that every system has the seeds of its downfall in it due to the people involved. Recommended reading for anyone in the technology business.
I still have a hard time believing this is not a spy novel, but a biography of a real person who really went through these events. Highly recommend this to anyone in IT or computer science/engineering.
I always wanted to know the full story behind the Free Kevin movement. Now I do, this was very entertaining to listen to all the ways he social engineered so many people into giving him access to sensitive information. His description of how he hacked systems was more informative and revealing than I expected it would be.
I really like the book. It's a fascinating story about a hacker I remember to have heard about when I was a teenager. A story about a trophy hunter of the digital age - overcoming challenges through creativity and mind-boggling paths. Hear his story of the hunt to bring him down. The narrator is doing a fabulous job to bring this book to life.
I first became interested in Kevin Mitnick after reading The Art of Deception. This book goes through Kevin's whole story, from growing up without a father figure all the way to where he is now. The narrator is one of the best I've ever heard, and as a result this audiobook reads more like Kevin himself telling his story. complete with all the vocal ups and downs to make things interesting.
As an IT Professional, listening to the social engineering aspects of "hacking" was an amazing eye opener.
Kevin Mitnick is the poster boy for computer hacking.
Ray Porter's narration was so believable I almost thought HE was the one who had written the book.
"Gripping in parts"
Getting chased by helicopter
Lies told by government to gain convictions
I agree with some that it drags at bits, however after the first hour or two it's a very addictive book. I would say that anyone would enjoy this book. It's like a thriller/ crime novel with a bit of hacking for dummies thrown in.
One of the best true-story / biography type books I have listened to. It's was eye opening to hear of the exploits that were - and still are - possible and made me realize just how vulnerable organizations and individuals are to some of the simplest techniques.
Learning about the power, and risk, of social engineering. Kevin's own story is slightly delusional because he does not appreciate the pain and financial loss incurred by corporations and individuals alike - he must have made a very, very big impact and he's kidding himself if he does not recognise that. But of all the people to exploit their skills it is true he was not as sinister as many others must have been.
Ray Porter handled the narration well and was enjoyable. Some sections were clearly computer print out type paragraphs or tables and the narrator handled them well - some I wish were summarized without reading every character but then those situations were few and far between - no problem.
He attempted various accents to add colour to the book which were generally successful - the english accent was especially amusing! Good stuff.
The curious geek, his gran, and federal law enforcement at its best and worst.
"A life worth knowing"
It might be less interesting for someone without IT knowledge, but an instructive story nevertheless. I think I never understood why they are saying that the weakest spot in security is the human. Learning about social engineering is learning about yourself. A must listen.
"Great real life story for all"
Fascinating twist and turn story
True story so author Kevin
No - easy book to listen to in small chunks
A fair bit of technical info so techies will love it - however, as a non-technie, this did not spoil the listen
"Awesome book, well read."
This is an incredible story. I'd not heard of Kevin Mitnick before and just went for it on a Twitter recommendation. I work in a sysadmin type role so it was an eye-opener that our recent NSA privacy problems have been pre-dated by a whole team of independent kids who hacked as a hobby. It'll certainly make me more cautious when using the phone as well as email/internet.
Ray's reading was fantastic. I felt like I was listening to the author tell the story.
"BUY THIS NOW!"
It was captivating from the start, even if you're only a little bit interested in technology or hacking in general. It's like a James Bond adventure in cyberspace and telephony systems and all based on the exploits of one remarkable nerdy guy!
The sheer mastery he possessed of both technology and social engineering is fascinating to listen to, the way he outclasses the FBI and is ahead of them at almost every turn even leaving them doughnuts in his fridge when he knew they were about to raid him!
This was the first audio book I've listened to and it's certainly one of the best performances. It didn't even enter my head that this wasn't Kevin Mitnick himself reading this aloud.
It's more of an adventure story rather than high drama so it's more action than emotion, however he comes across as a really nice guy and not the mastermind criminal he was made out to be at the time all this was happening.
I've recommended this audio book to absolutely all my friends and family and those who have listened to it have not been disappointed!
"Great first read (listen"
'Page tuner', funny, great narrator
This was my first audiobook and what a start. I loved this audiobook, great story and narrator. Kevin has the mind of a genius.
"I loved it."
This was a really fantastic book, the author has a really amazing memory and scatters a wonderful array of details throughout the book which really brings it to life. He gives lots of detailed descriptions about his techniques which is great!
One of the best audio books I've listened to and I've been an audible member for many years now.
"A captivating tale that improves with each chapter"
No. I never read a book twice.
They get better as the book progresses. The detail given throughout the book will be interesting to both technical reader and non-technical reader alike - explanations are clear and well explained but not dumbed down.
If you trust the ratings given to this book on Audible then you need to read this book. If you've read the book and still don't question the ratings then you didn't read the book properly.
This book is well worth reading for the insight it gives into human nature.
The author's character is a little irritating in the first few chapters as he seems to be getting into trouble needlessly but it very quickly grows into a likeable one. After the first half hour of listening I wasn't sure if I would make it all the way through but soon after that I couldn't put it down.
"Fantastic, Inspiring stuff"
Really enjoyed this. Facinating insight into the exploits and mind of one of the most famous 'hackers' ever. What was most interesting to me was that a large part of what Kevin did was 'Socially Engineering' not the stereo type of a spotty kid sitting in front of a computer in a dark room at all. Some of ways he would trick people into revealing highly confindential information to what was effectively a stranger on the phone left me open mouthed at the both the shear audacity and the genius of it.
Sure the writing is not perfect and Kevin clearly relishes describing the technical detial of his hacks which I found facinating, but may put others off. Some other interesting details of his life are kind of glossed over to focus more on the actuall hacking. I would have like to hear a little more of how he coped with his time in prison, and a little more about why his close family seemed so acepting and tollerant of his exploits - even when he was on the run from the FBI and using a false identity!
All in all though this is a facinating listen and should be required reading for any one working in computer/phone security.
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