Ghost in the Wires

Or the official biography of Kevin Mitnick.   In the 90s, Kevin Mitnick was known as the World Most Wanted Hacker.  He is an artist of social engineering.   His book “The Art of Deception” is a reference on the topic.

This new opus tells the history of Kevin from his youth till the day he was free.  Do you remember the “Free Kevin”  protesting movement?  Is this new book interesting?  I read with pleasure “The Art of Deception”.   It is not the case with this book.  It could have been a good thriller, but the style is not right to create suspense.  It could have been a book on the havcking mindset, but the described introspection is too shallow. It could have been  a technical book, but the rare technical descriptions are uninteresti

The main interest of the book is to have an insight of his motivations:  “Getting access to things that he was not authorized”.  Nevertheless,  “The Art of Deception” gives a better view on social engineering.    An unanswered question:  why did he need to go to jail to become an ethical hacker?

We will  keep a good description of ethical hacking.

What I do now fuels the same passion for hacking I felt during all those years of unauthorized access.  The difference can be summed up in one word: authorization.
I don’t need authorization to get in.
It’s the word that instantly transforms me from the World’s Most Wanted Hacker to one of the Most Wanted Security Experts in the world.  Just like magic.

Conclusion: This book is not mandatory on the shelves of security people.  “The Art of Deception” is mandatory.


K.D. Mitnick and W.L. Simon, Ghost in the Wires: My Adventures as the World’s Most Wanted Hacker, Little, Brown and Company, 2011

K.D. Mitnick and W.L. Simon, The Art of Deception: Controlling the Human Element of Security, John Wiley & Sons, 2003.

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