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Thread: Book by Kevin Mitnick outlaw hacker describes tricks of the trade!

  1. #1

    Thumbs up Book by Kevin Mitnick outlaw hacker describes tricks of the trade!

    The story can be found here @

    Book by celebrated outlaw hacker describes tricks of the trade
    By Jim Krane, Associated Press, 6/30/2002 14:37
    NEW YORK (AP) Barred by the terms of his probation from messing with computers, ex-convict hacker Kevin Mitnick has turned to writing about them, baring the tricks of his former trade in a forthcoming book.

    An advance copy of the book, ''The Art of Deception,'' describes more than a dozen scenarios where tricksters dupe computer network administrators into divulging passwords, encryption keys and other coveted security details.

    But it's all fiction. Or so says Mitnick.

    Those seeking Mitnick's version of his lawless escapades will have to wait. Personal details are carefully expunged from the book, which uses fictitious names of hackers, victims and companies.

    ''It's not the Kevin Mitnick story,'' said Mitnick, 38, of Thousand Oaks, Calif., who served five years in federal prison for stealing software and altering data at Motorola, Novell, Nokia, Sun Microsystems and the University of Southern California. He was released in January 2000 and is currently on three years' probation.

    ''This book isn't about my cases, it's creating fiction stories with the same techniques I've used and others have used,'' he said.

    Mitnick says his message is aimed at computer security professionals, to help them stop people like him. But he agreed his tricks would also make good fodder for the dishonest.

    ''The information can be used for good or bad,'' he said.

    The book's contents, to be released in October, are probably too tame to interest a malicious hacker, said Bruce Schneier of Counterpane Internet Security in Cupertino, Calif.

    ''The bad guys don't need to read this book,'' Schneier said. ''But the good guys need to know what the criminals are doing.''

    Mitnick is best known for leading the FBI on a three-year manhunt that ended in 1995 when agents collared him in an apartment in Raleigh, N.C. with the help of a top academic security expert.

    During the chase, the bespectacled outlaw continued to break into computer networks. He was considered a cult hero among hackers and a slippery felon by the federal judge who finally sentenced him.

    ''We've had a terrible, terrible time with this defendant,'' U.S. District Judge Mariana Pfaelzer said during a June 2000 hearing.

    In his hacking heyday, Mitnick was described as an overweight, pimpled young man obsessed with fast food.

    He has since undergone an image makeover. He's slimmed down, sports a stylish haircut and has appeared on television, in the courtroom as an expert witness and even before Congress.

    Mitnick's life still revolves around weekly visits to Larry Hawley, his federal probation officer, who declined to return calls seeking an interview. Hawley is said to be keen to read his client's forthcoming book.

    ''He will be going over it in some detail,'' said a probation official in Los Angeles who spoke on condition of anonymity.

    To be able to prevent the government from handing the book's earnings to his victims, Mitnick said he navigated between his probation roadblocks and the court-imposed restrictions on profiting from tales of his crimes.

    ''We've been very careful, we have nothing in the book that discusses my hacking,'' said Mitnick, who co-authored the book with tech journalist William Simon.

    Terms of Mitnick's three years of probation which ends in January require that he keep his hands off all computers, software, modems, cell phones and any devices that would give him access to the Internet. His travel and employment are also restricted.

    Although some of his requests have been denied especially those relating to travel Mitnick received permission to carry a cell phone, to visit his book's New York publicist and to type the manuscript on a computer that is not connected to the Internet.

    The probation official said the office hadn't been informed of Mitnick's plans for a six-city book tour in November, and wasn't sure whether the ex-convict would be permitted to travel.

    The book's veneer of fiction appears quite thin except perhaps where it veers into boasting. Behind their hokey aliases, the characters sound quite like the author.

    In one anecdote, Mitnick writes of a hacker who downloads a server's encrypted password file and uses a cracking program to perform a ''brute-force attack.'' The hacker soon gains the keys to the company network.

    In another episode, a rogue caller tricks a company's IT help desk into believing he's an employee stuck at home in a snowstorm. The swindle ends with the hacker palming a password.

    In another, a con man talks a night watchman through the motions of creating an account for him on a company computer network. In another, a smooth-talking caller dupes an employee into downloading a ''Trojan horse'' program that gives the hacker remote access to the network.

    Several of these fictitious scenarios resemble schemes Mitnick confessed to when sentenced in 1999, according to court documents provided by the former assistant U.S. attorney who prosecuted the case, Christopher Painter.

    The confession, signed by Mitnick, describes how the hacker deceived operators at dozens of real companies and stole computer source code as well as services like phone calls and Internet server space using many of the same ruses.

    Painter, now deputy chief of the Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section at the U.S. Department of Justice, described Mitnick's tactics as closer to those of the old-time con man than of a computer scientist.

    Since his release from prison, Mitnick has made a living by using his ill-gotten skills as the basis for magazine articles, speaking engagements and a recent AM radio talk show in Los Angeles.

    Mitnick swears that he'll never hack again but not because prison taught him anything.

    ''Prison had nothing to do with my rehabilitation,'' Mitnick said. ''I grew out of my hacking. Now I'm 38. There are no 38-year-old hackers out there.''

    On the Net:

    Mitnick's site:

    Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section at the U.S. Department of Justice:

    Is anyone else gonna buy his book?

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    What a lame thing to do. He's capitalizing again on his "Hacker" reputation. He's 38 years old and still broke. It just sounds like he's just such a luser with noting better to do. But I'm sure he's a nice guy. I gues being a 38 year old ex-con "hacker" is gonna sell alot of books.
    Good Grief

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    looks like mitnick may finally have a hack for the system. i hope this one works out for him. he hasn't even been able to get his amature radio license back.
    Bukhari:V3B48N826 “The Prophet said, ‘Isn’t the witness of a woman equal to half of that of a man?’ The women said, ‘Yes.’ He said, ‘This is because of the deficiency of a woman’s mind.’”

  4. #4
    What a lame thing to do. He's capitalizing again on his "Hacker" reputation. He's 38 years old and still broke. It just sounds like he's just such a luser with noting better to do. But I'm sure he's a nice guy. I gues being a 38 year old ex-con "hacker" is gonna sell alot of books.
    I don't think he's doing anything wrong by publishing his own book. Personally I think his book will hold a lot of useful information.

  5. #5
    AntiOnline Senior Member souleman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Flint, MI

    You may want to read that thread Isellcrack....
    \"Ignorance is bliss....
    but only for your enemy\"
    -- souleman

  6. #6


    Well thank's for the reply souleman. But Why would you think that I would plagiarize this article?

    Plagiarize:To steal and pass off (the ideas or words of another) as one's own use (a created production) without crediting the source.[/B]

    I never said I wrote this article. I'm not stealing his words for my own benefit, I didn't change nothing around, All I did was post the article and the link for it.[/B] I even gived credit where credit was due! I just found this article last night on the internet, and I thought it would be a good idea to share the information with everyone else.

  7. #7
    AntiOnline Senior Member souleman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Flint, MI
    I didn't say it had anything to do with plagerism. I was not trying to accuse you of that. The link is about copywrite, not plagerism...

    3> amount of portion used in relation to the work as a whole
    In other words, you can copy a small portion but cutting and pasting an entire article is not allowed. If you do want to cut and paste the entire thing, then you need to include a lot of criticism/comment/reporting/teaching, so that the cut and paste is not the primary part of your post.
    It is really cool that you gave the link, because a lot of people have not been doing that. My point was that by copy/pasting the entire article, its still illegal. Either summerize it in your own words, or copy a small portion of it, but doing the entire thing is a violation of copyright laws....

    It does look like it is going to be a good book, and I am looking forward to reading it, once it comes out.
    \"Ignorance is bliss....
    but only for your enemy\"
    -- souleman

  8. #8
    Senior Member n01100110's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    I Dont think that Mitnick will give up Hacking for good , im sure he will still use the internet and just play it safe , Program or whatever.But im sure that his book will be a best seller. Im looking forward to it.
    "Serenity is not the absence of conflict, but the ability to cope with it."

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2001

    Blah to Mitnick..

    Kevin Mitnick is a joke. He uses his reputation as an ex-hacker to use a bunch of brainless 15 year old script kiddies to be his army of free kevin advocates. This guy has become a media whore and it is sad. It's really funny how he disappears off the face of the planet, and then suddenly when he needs something pops up out of no where crying for help.

    Remember when he was locked up. His web site was updated almost everyday. He was constantly giving news and updates to the webmaster to post because he NEEDED people to have their little free kevin rallies. Then he starts having donation buttons for his defense fund. The guy finally gets out of jail, and what happens? His web site doesn't get updated for like 3 months. No one knows how the guy is doing, even the people that donated. He disappeared.

    Then a couple months later. His site is updated "Send me books, Send me stuff... I'm broke and can't afford it because the system ruined my life. Give me, Give me, Give me." After that, nothing for a few more months.

    All of a sudden you start hearing his name again "Waaa... Waaa... They won't let me sell my ID card on ebay. Even though I say specifically in the description that I STOLE it, and it is a violation of ebay's TOS to sell stolen goods". He complained and whined, and his site was updated begging for help from his little script kiddie fans to complain to ebay. Then he finds another online auction, sells his ID, then disappears again. No updates. No nothing.

    Couple months down the road. "I can't get my ham radio license! Waa.... Everyone is against me! Help me script kiddie army! Complain to the powers that be!"

    And now he is writing a book. Point being this guy is a whiney bitch that is a media whore that only gives a **** about himself. No matter how many people have donated and fought his cause for him, he could care less. He only comes around when he wants something, otherwise you'll never hear from or about the guy. It's annoying and lame.

    I'll have to disagree with those that say the book is going to be good. The only skill Kevin Mitnick had was social engineering. And though most of you might consider social engineering as a hacking skill, I just consider it good old fashioned lying. He should just write a book about how to manipulate and lie to people. That's about all he has exeperience with. Anything technical that he may know is out of date and useless anyway.

    Kevin Mitnick is a dick.
    An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure...

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    since u linked my post to yours, ill do the same, because in gathering opinions on the matter.


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