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Publisher's Summary

The first book to reveal and dissect the technical aspect of many social engineering maneuvers...

From elicitation, pretexting, influence, and manipulation, all aspects of social engineering are picked apart, discussed, and explained by using real world examples, personal experience, and the Science & Technology behind them to unraveled the mystery in social engineering.

Kevin Mitnick - one of the most famous social engineers in the world - popularized the term social engineering. He explained that it is much easier to trick someone into revealing a password for a system than to exert the effort of hacking into the system. Mitnick claims that this social engineering tactic was the single-most effective method in his arsenal. This indispensable book examines a variety of maneuvers that are aimed at deceiving unsuspecting victims, while it also addresses ways to prevent social engineering threats.

This audiobook

  • Examines social engineering, the Science & Technology of influencing a target to perform a desired task or divulge information;
  • Arms you with invaluable information about the many methods of trickery that hackers use in order to gather information with the intent of executing identity theft, fraud, or gaining computer system access; and
  • Reveals vital steps for preventing social engineering threats.

Social Engineering: The Art of Human Hacking does its part to prepare you against nefarious hackers. Now you can do your part by putting to good use the critical information this audiobook provides.

©2011 Christopher Hadnagy (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    372
  • 4 Stars
    218
  • 3 Stars
    123
  • 2 Stars
    52
  • 1 Stars
    43

Performance

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    325
  • 4 Stars
    201
  • 3 Stars
    120
  • 2 Stars
    35
  • 1 Stars
    35

Story

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    341
  • 4 Stars
    165
  • 3 Stars
    117
  • 2 Stars
    54
  • 1 Stars
    42
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Very Interesting, Very Detailed, Very Long.

I first became aware of the concept of Social Engineering when I read “Ghost in the Wires” and I was blown away! It was very exciting – that guy has GUTS!

I wanted to read more about the technique, not necessarily with the goal of learning how to social-engineer people in mind, but rather to try and recognize the signs so I can detect if ever I am being social-engineered!

This book is quite thorough and there is no denying the material is interesting, but I found it too long. There was too much “telling me about what I’m about to read” which I found completely redundant and annoying. Don’t tell me about what you are going to write, just write it and let me read it!!

Aside from that complaint, the book had me hooked.

12 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Max
  • Manalapan, NJ, United States
  • 09-11-12

Very nice introduction to social engineering

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

I wanted an introductory book into social engineering, and this book does this job perfectly. There is an explanation of all the sides of the art, and direction for further info if you're interested to dive deeper into anything in particular.
Many examples / real stories makes this listen even easier to follow. Would recommend this audio to anyone.
Additionally, I've discovered that like most people, I was stupid enough to have the same password / user-name on many sites. And how easy it is for anyone (unfriendly, or just bored) to mess up my life. Well, not anymore... or at least not that easy. That alone definitely worth a "credit".

11 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Some interesting content

Is there anything you would change about this book?

It's way too full of filler. A good editor could cut out at least 50% of this book.

How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

At the risk of redundancy...make it shorter!

What three words best describe A. T. Chandler’s performance?

computer like voice.

Do you think Social Engineering: The Art of Human Hacking needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

No. It was really too much "fluff" as it is.

Any additional comments?

If you are really interested in the topic, you will probably make it through this book...but if you aren't really interested, I'll bet $10 you won't make it all the way through. It's a tough slog at times.

12 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

An Unlistenable Con...

This book sounds like it was written by a "get rich easy" infomercial done by a legal team and read by a robot... Empty, repetitive, and bland. Just horrendous. Time well wasted.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Doug
  • TUSTIN, CA, United States
  • 12-08-12

Social Engineering Savvy

Where does Social Engineering: The Art of Human Hacking rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Very solid story and illustrative explanations on Social Engineering. I would rate this a 9 out of 10 on explanation of the subject matter. Voice acting was pleasant and continued well throughout the audio book.

Who was your favorite character and why?

No real characters as this was more of a manual of methods than a true story, but it did have small stories to illustrate Social Engineering points.

Which scene was your favorite?

The stories of the 10 million dollar bank heist.

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

Yes, it was that good. Unfortunately, life gets in the way.

Any additional comments?

Would like a British female voice as an option to listen to this book. There is just something sexy about that and it compliments the subject.

13 of 17 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Book Is a Reflection of the Topic, One Giant Con

The book contains very little substance, and subsequently repeats itself without providing value. The author tries to substantiate a generalized approach to social engineering with debunked psychology and flowery language. It's apparent the author has no formal education, and this is just a continuation of what he does for a living, conning people. This book want you to believe social engineering is different than what con men do. It isn't and no amount of contrite language or wrongly applied psych studies will change that. This book is rubbish.

14 of 19 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Very good

What made the experience of listening to Social Engineering: The Art of Human Hacking the most enjoyable?

Just very good, that is all, you will learn a lot about how to protect yourself from criminals. Hopefully you're not a criminal reading this book, in this case don't read it little twat.

8 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Love! will be listening to again highly recommend

The writing is just great, the author clearly understands people;p. Your average joe can understand and follow along, however, its not dumbed down nor does it over explain or over simplify any points or concepts as to lose the more experienced readers.
Also i have to say the Reader did his job so well! i actually had to go back and look to see if the author was doing the reading because of the interest he had and also demanded in me as a listener. Animated and well read. overall i can actually say i learned things i will probably use the rest of my life and that is exactly what i was hoping to get out of this:)

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Great Book for Beginners, But Hard to Come Back To

This book is a good reminder of how to be more secure with your personal information.
If you are a beginner into the subject of social engineering, this would be a great starting point. You can learn about micro-expressions, different types of programs that social engineers can use to gather your personal information, how pre-texting can help you gain the trust of strangers and more.

The best part of the book is when he talks about his security audit for a company where he attempts to retrieve information from the CEO's computer. In this part he explains how he gathered information of the target and managed to gain his trust to have him download a malicious PDF file.

If you have read around, listened to podcasts about this subject, or done any slight research on this topic, I would say to look elsewhere. The author pats himself in the back too much. Straight from the start he's talking about himself of how good he is at social engineering. Throughout the book he will continue with the same writing. He will also end chapters with a laundry list of what is coming next. "In chapter 4, I'll talk about _____, then in chapter 5 I will talk about ____, after chapter 5 I will talk about _____." It almost feels as though I am reading a rushed high school student's paper who is trying to meet the word count for the assignment.
There is a lot of repetition in the book, the author will constantly repeat himself about the same information he gave 1-5 chapters ago.

This book is 14 hours of a robotic voice. It takes a lot just to muster listening to it. At first I was fine with listening to it, but the further I got the harder it became to come back and try to finish it. A good book should be enjoying to listen to, this one felt like a chore to go back to just to finish.


1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Interesting concepts, poor writing

The entire book should really be a manual, as it can be condensed into a few shorter chapters. The topic has high potential for a rich narration filled with examples and considerations. The book however falls short on that front, often resorting to enumerating what is going to be discussed next, or summarizing what was just said. Also I found it especially irritating that the victim of engineering attacks was more likely a 'she' than a 'he', whereas the social engineer was more likely portraied as a 'he'.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • ISee
  • 05-05-17

Waste of time, literally

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

Actual content

What was most disappointing about Christopher Hadnagy and Paul Wilson (foreword) ’s story?

Constantly trying to "sell" me the book's idea when I have clearly already purchased it.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

The scene where I pressed the stop button and moved on to the next book in my "to listen to" list.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Social Engineering: The Art of Human Hacking?

I never got past the chapter 3 as the book was STILL trying to sell me the idea of itself instead of teaching me something interesting. The "amazing" example of a successful con where a woman was distracted by the conman's accomplices while he steals her handbag that rested on a chair next to her? REALLY? A genius and meticulously planned heist or a gamble that she may or may not notice her handbag being stolen from right under her nose? Apparently, the secret to stealing someone's valued possession is to remain calm and confident.

Any additional comments?

Based on the book's title, I expected to be learning to negotiate with people and getting a better deal whilst doing so, not listen to at least three chapters of why this book is amazing and how it can transform my life...

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Elija Button
  • 12-23-12

YOU MUST READ THIS BOOK... OR YOU WILL DIE

I'm a security professional, mainly working with computers, but physical security factors a fair bit in my day-to-day activities too. Social Engineering is one of those modern names for the oldest form of attack, something that we are all capable of doing and also capable of falling foul to. Pretexting is used in literature and film all the time to get the story moving; undercover cops, turncoats, spies and double agents, and insider trading are all roles that rely on the ability of the character to engineer social situations to their benefit - and this is no different in real life. The author is a proven expert in social engineering and his involvement in The Real Hustle is testament to his ability to fool people into doing something he wants them to for his benefit. This is not a me me me book, like the Mitnick books in the same genre, instead this really is an exposition of the social science of hacking the human, with all the psychology and rationale explained perfectly for the layman. After reading this you will be better equipped to see through the fraudsters, better engage with salesmen and get the price you want for that rug down the local market. This is a must read if you are in any way interested in this topic, whether as layman or professional. Five stars.

11 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • MaMm
  • 01-21-17

Interesting content but exaggerated presentation

The content in this book is interesting and seems like a fairly comprehensive overview of the topic. The examples given are representative and mostly interesting.

The main reason I could not recommend it though is the style in which it is written and the performance of the audiobook.

The writing style uses blatant and constant superlatives for everything. We hear of the "deadly" tool: the Question, the "devastating" effects of imitating somebody elses facial expressions etc.

This is well matched, in my opinion to the worse, with the performer of this audiobook who narrates it all as if it were a movie trailer for the next Michael Bay blockbuster. Emphasis is used for every single word and you have the equivalent experience to walking through Times Square trying to read the road signs in the midst of all the flashing and flickering ads all around.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Mr
  • 09-14-17

Buy this and you've been socially engineered

Slow to start and repetitive throughout. If you do buy this, you can miss the first three chapters. Seems like the author was given a word count target and fell miserably short so injected as many adverbs and adjectives he could find then copy pasted each sentence. Felt like I had been scammed as I was reading. Persevered to end in anticipation that was not realized.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Gareth
  • 04-27-17

A bit repetitive and the narrator is not suited

The content of this book is really interesting but you have to listen through far to much pre-amble to get to the info. This wouldn't be so bad if the preamble wasn't repeated almost every chapter.

A previous review mentioned the narrator sounds like a movie trailer voice over and I think that is a pretty accurate description. Also, his unfamiliarity with the subject is clear and obviously made no attempt to learn pronunciation, opting instead to spell out words.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Brunogn
  • 01-09-17

Great book

great insight into Social Engineering. Only criticism is that the chapters do not match the audio.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Rainer
  • 07-24-15

Human hacking 101 sums it up

I didn't really know what to expect from this book. In the introduction they say that the book is aimed at the people who have to test security measures for companies and so or people who are just interested to learn about it so they can adjust their security measures, i.e. the 'good ones'. Throughout this book I always felt that this is actually rather a summary of stories how to exploit niceness. The verdict always seemed to be that the key to trick people into doing what the social engineer wanted was by exploiting their niceness, by using the secretary's pity he got her to plug in his malicious USB drive and so on. In the end the message for me was that we all can be tricked by others because we all try to be nice to others.

I thought the book overall was interesting, some of the stories he tells are really fascinating. I did not like the message too much, but I reckon that it is the only conclusion you can draw from his experiences.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Natalie Bailey
  • 02-13-18

Incredibly interesting

I got a lot out of this book. Very easy to see how easy it is to be manipulated. There is a lot of good that can come from this though, and using some parts of this book for good is a great thing. Helping people beat the threat of hackers or simply making a stranger feel comfortable in your presense. Highly recommend.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • fiona terry
  • 11-19-17

This book is a complete guide

I loved this book. It is a complete guide for anyone who is starting to learn the arts behind social engineering and how it relates to security. Even if you are familiar with the subject there is so much information here you will learn something.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • @ahcperrin
  • 11-09-17

Everyone should listen to the non technical part!

I work in IT and this book is very relevant to me. Most of this book is not technical and should be read by everyone in order to gain awarness on how social engineering works.
I absolutely loved the case studies and examples that show thath it is not always very hard to gain access to confidential information.

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • Karl
  • 09-17-16

Junk

Waste of time rubbish.

The book is written like a long continuous infomercial. It constantly talks about "you will see", "you will lean", "as you will find out in chapter x".

The book completely fails to provide information of any kind and instead says crap that only idiots think is actually information. "Amazing", "always", "unbelievable", "huge amount".

The book tried to entice you to keep listening as if it wants you to buy something.

I'm sorry Mr Author, this book is click-baity style rubbish.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful