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We Are Anonymous Audiobook

We Are Anonymous: Inside the Hacker World of LulzSec, Anonymous, and the Global Cyber Insurgency

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Publisher's Summary

We Are Anonymous is a thrilling, exclusive expose of the hacker collectives Anonymous and LulzSec.

In late 2010, thousands of hacktivists joined a mass digital assault by Anonymous on the websites of VISA, MasterCard, and PayPal to protest their treatment of WikiLeaks. Splinter groups then infiltrated the networks of totalitarian governments in Libya and Tunisia, and an elite team of six people calling themselves LulzSec attacked the FBI, CIA, and Sony. They were flippant and taunting, grabbed headlines, and amassed more than a quarter of a million Twitter followers. The computer security world - and world at large - realized quickly that Anonymous and its splinter groups are something to treat with dead seriousness.

Through the stories of three key members, We Are Anonymous offers a gripping, adrenaline-fueled narrative in the style of The Accidental Billionaires, drawing upon hundreds of conversations with the members themselves, including exclusive interviews. By coming to know them - their childhoods, families, and personal demons - we come to know the human side of their virtual exploits, and why they're so passionate about disrupting the Internet's frontiers.

©2012 Parmy Olson (P)2012 Hacette Audio

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  •  
    Invisibled California 06-21-13
    Invisibled California 06-21-13 Member Since 2017
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    "Great book, so-so narrator"
    If you could sum up We Are Anonymous in three words, what would they be?

    So. Freaking. Awesome.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Kayla. I identify with he/she/its paranoia


    What didn’t you like about Abby Craden’s performance?

    Her voice was so subdued that I wonder if she narrated this book out of some sort of contract necessity. She has a habit of ending every sentence by dropping her vocal tone which causes vocal fry (growling). Which would be fine ... if it weren't Every. Freaking. Sentence.


    Any additional comments?

    Great book, worth looking past my gripes with the narration.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Redwood City, cA 02-03-13
    Amazon Customer Redwood City, cA 02-03-13
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    "Admirable attempt to tackle difficult subject"

    I believe the content of this book should be graded on a curve: how does one adequately capture the development of an organization that defines itself by its lack of organization? How does one make sense of a so-called "hacktavist" group that does not have a specific political agenda? Lastly, how does one try to capture the meaning of a cyber movement that is still in its infancy?

    Despite these issues, author Parmy Olson does an adequate job of giving a coherent account Anonymous, LulzSec and related cyber groups. She focuses on a few central key figures like "Sebu", "Topiary" and "Kayla" and tries to show how these figures reflect different sides of Anonymous. For example, Sebu represents the political-minded hacktavist side, Topiary represents the "lulz" side and Kayla the hard-core hacker side. I think this strategy was effective since it gives the reader the sense that while Anonymous, LulzSec, etc are frequently talked about as a single entity within the media the motivations of the people who identify with these group vary wildly.

    I have two criticisms of this audiobook. The first regards the content. I thought the author at times went off into unnecessary tangents, introducing periphery figures that didn't add much to the book, or quoted chat logs for longer than was needed. My second criticism regards the narration. I don't know who's idea it was to have the narrator use different accents for each speaker because they were annoying and even distracting at certain points (Barret Brown's Texas accent immediately comes to mind). If I had to it over again, I would have bought a paper or e-book version rather than get the audiobook.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Neuron Sweden 03-12-15
    Neuron Sweden 03-12-15 Member Since 2017
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    "A well told story about the origins of the hacker"

    The hacker network known as anonymous has become very influential and receives much publicity in the world today. Yet people in general know very little about how Anonymous is actually organized or how many people are active in the network.

    In this book, author Parmy Olson, takes us backstage and tells the story of ~5 core members of this renowned hacker network. Jake a.k.a. “Topiary”, a social outcast teenager on the Shetlands, was for some time the voice of the hacker network. Kayla, a highly skilled hacker whose identity still appears uncertain. Sabu, a mexican immigrant living in the US… among others. The their shared belief that the internet should be entirely free brought these people together and through their combined expertise they managed quite a lot of havoc in the real world. Together they brought down web pages belonging to the Church of Scientology as well as the Tunisian government. Other than high profile hacks such as these the members also did multiple hacks on social network sites which are actually kind of horrific. The book also describes how the members were identified and ultimately arrested. Still as anyone who has seen the news lately knows, anonymous did not disappear with these arrests. A strength and a weakness of their organisation is their lack of… organisation... The members do not know each other personally, they do not have a leader or a chairman steering the boat and anyone can perform a hack in the name of anonymous and thus move the agenda of the organisation.

    What this book does particularly well is to give you insight into how anonymous is organized (and how it is not organized). You will learn about the types of attacks that are typically employed by the network as well as how they protect their real identities (though they were ultimately unsuccessful). The reader of this book will also learn how to protect one's identity online and how not to get fooled by social hackers. All in all, it is a very good and informative book and well worth a read if you are at all interested in anonymous or hackers in general.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kenneth LEESBURG, VA, United States 07-31-13
    Kenneth LEESBURG, VA, United States 07-31-13 Member Since 2010
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    "Armatures proving that Pros aren’t even Trying"

    Obviously when dealing with shadowy organizations (or anti-organizations) there are some limits to knowledge. The act of looking intently may change the situation, or acquiring deep insights of murky situations may take so long that the situation changes during the process, only becoming clear in retrospect. However, this book is about as accurate and as informative as is possible for a book about Anonymous. This is the primary reason to read it. It’s a good introduction; a reasonably balanced, reasonable acute reporting.

    The important takeaways from this book seem to be: 1) that as a cyber-army Anonymous is shockingly low tech and 2) the corollary that as a society we are shockingly vulnerable to low tech attacks.

    Anonymous is mostly a large group of board rowdy teenagers with nothing better to do, who meet up on sexually explicit and gore oriented bulletin boards, like 4chan or B, and from time to tie sally forth to experience a bit of mayhem. Sure they are a few elite security exports who may (or may not) be leading them (the whole question of leadership is controversial). But even the elite hackers within Anonymous are rather underwhelming, compared to other cyber-war or cybercrime groups, like author of the Conficker Worm, which was a team of world class professionals.

    If you’re a believer in Anonymous as a cause this is probably reassuring (these are pretty ordinary people), if you’re not a believer this is the doubling unsettling. It reveals the extent to which IT professionals at your work, at companies you buy from, in the government, and behind the medical, financial, personal and computer services you must use in modern life, are not really trying to deal with computer security. It seems that they are not striving to fix the problems, but merely striving to put on a good show in the hopes of deflecting blame for the problem. That is, their goal is not security, but rather security theater. And the police are so out classed (with a few exceptions) that it’s like hiring a bunch of 12 year old girls as bouncers at a Megadeath concert (if you’re lucky they might avoid becoming victims themselves).

    As a society we don’t seem to yet ready to do anything about this situation. Sure Anonymous terrorizes some innocent people, but they are mostly terrorizing each other, and they do some good. The problems seem tolerable. But history suggest that this unstable. Over time either someone will figure how to use Anonymous (or similar organizations) as their personal armies. This is roughly the way nearly all of history’s most evil megalomaniacs rose to power. Or Anonymous will gradually become more and more evil, corrupted from within by its own power.

    The situation today is troubling, but far from dire. The scary bit is the trajectory; and it’s very dire.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    K.W. VA 03-31-15
    K.W. VA 03-31-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Good book, distracting performance"

    At first, the book was too much like a novel for me - talking about people's inner feelings and such - which is by my preferred kind of book. It seemed to fiction-like. Even though, I think most people enjoy that. I got used to it and found that the author did a good job of conveying the IRC goings-on in an engaging way.

    Now, the performance by the narrator....eh. I don't like to give negative reviews but man, she did not-so-great accents and read things in a way that seemed kind of cliché. I did consider returning the book but listened through because the book itself was good. I won't listen to this reader again though.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Petrus Toxy Law Firm 09-04-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Lulz."

    This book have a lot of inside Information about details. It has an correct view what Anonymous is and what Anonymous isn't. It has also realistic details about hacking methods and inside Information about LulzSec. Interesting. Then there was few in e g LulzSec who had inside information.
    This rise questions in my book - who's the source?
    The book also raise an interesting question in the end - who's the missing LulzSec member? Or are there more than one missing LulzSec members? Lulz
    To know what I'm talking about you must listen to this audiobook. It'll give something from n00b to Skiddies and further to 1337.

    The performance was also top notch. You can almost believe that the narrator have met the real people behind the different identities.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Aaron Sattler 08-08-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Great dramatic non-fiction story"

    Not only packed full of presumable facts about these groups and "hacking" in general, but also a captivating story that kept me intrigued and interested as if it were a great novel.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M con amazon 07-29-17
    M con amazon 07-29-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Informative and very well narrated"

    If you want to know more about this social concept and important movement, this book will give you relevant and detailed information about the network and ops organic organization. All though sometimes you can get a bit lost in the sea of nicknames and IRC chatrooms in the overall it serves the purpose. Great narrator, even though some of the voices are very different to the real voices of the characters, probably their on line personas would sound more like her impersonation, which makes it very interesting and entertaining.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Siobhan Ricci 06-22-17 Member Since 2017
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    "V for Veracity"

    Accurate, unmasked, the men and women behind the screens revealed. Hacking activist/corrupted technocrats LOL

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Payton 05-23-17
    Payton 05-23-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Reads like fiction, tastes like chicken"

    Couldn't put it down. The story reads like a fiction novel. Be prepared for a narrator, trying to imitate accents and failing. Enjoyed it regardless.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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