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The Art of Intrusion: The Real Stories Behind the Exploits of Hackers, Intruders and Deceivers Paperback – 30 Dec 2005

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Product details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: John Wiley & Sons; New Ed edition (30 Dec. 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0471782661
  • ISBN-13: 978-0471782667
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 2 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 619,836 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description


" ... a compilation of real hacking stories told to Mitnick by fellow hackers... " (", March 2005) It would be difficult to find an author with more credibility than Mitnick to write about the art of hacking. In 1995, he was arrested for illegal computer snooping, convicted and held without bail for two years before being released in 2002. He clearly inspires unusual fear in the authorities and unusual dedication in the legions of computer security dabblers, legal and otherwise. Renowned for his use of "social engineering," the art of tricking people into revealing secure information such as passwords, Mitnick ("The Art of Deception) introduces readers to a fascinating array of pseudonymous hackers. One group of friends bilks Las Vegas casinos out of more than a million dollars by mastering the patterns inherent in slot machines; another fellow, less fortunate, gets mixed up with a presumed al-Qaeda- style terrorist; and a prison convict leverages his computer skills to communicate with the outside world, unbeknownst to his keepers. Mitnick's handling of these engrossing tales is exemplary, for which credit presumably goes to his coauthor, writing pro Simon. Given the complexity (some would say obscurity) of the material, the authors avoid the pitfall of drowning readers in minutiae. Uniformly readable, the stories-- some are quite exciting-- will impart familiar lessons to security pros while introducing lay readers to an enthralling field of inquiry. "Agent, David Fugate. (Mar.) ("Publishers Weekly, February 14, 2005) Infamous criminal hacker turned computer security consultant Mitnick offers an expert sequel to his best-sellingThe Art of Deception, this time supplying real-life rather than fictionalized stories of contemporary hackers sneaking into corporate servers worldwide. Each chapter begins with a computer crime story that reads like a suspense novel; it is a little unnerving to learn how one's bank account is vulnerable to digital thieves or how hackers with an interest in gambling can rake in thousands of dollars in just minutes at a compromised slot machine. The hack revealed, Mitnick then walks readers step by step through a prevention method. Much like Deception, this book illustrates that hacking techniques can penetrate corporate and government systems protected by state-of-the-art security. Mitnick's engaging writing style combines intrigue, entertainment, and education. As with Deception, information technology professionals can learn how to detect and prevent security breaches, while informed readers can sit back and enjoy the stories of cybercrime. Recommended for most public and academic libraries. --Joe Accardi, William Rainey Harper Coll. Lib., Palatine, IL ("Library Journal, January 15, 2005)

From the Inside Flap

Four pals clean up in Vegas with a pocket–sized computer. A boredCanadian teen gains access to the wire transfers section of a majorSouthern bank. A couple of kids are recruited to hack into LockheedMartin and the Defense Information System Network by a terroristwith ties to Osama bin Laden.

And these stories are true.

If you′re the security officer in your organization, the talesin this book crawled out of that closet where your nightmares live.Fears about national security keeping you awake? Put the coffee on;it gets worse. And if you just enjoy a heck of a good cliff–hangerfull of spies and real–life intrigue, strap yourself in for a wildread.

--This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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There comes a magical gambler's moment when simple thrills magnify to become 3-D fantasies - a moment when greed chews up ethics and the casino system is just another mountain waiting to be conquered. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By J. Colacicco on 3 Aug. 2005
Format: Hardcover
I enjoyed this book. I was very much looking forward to it after reading The Art of Deception. This book follows the same format, with 11 chapters detailing a number of hackers/security consultants experiences breaking into systems in various ways. Unlike the Art of Deception which concentrated purely on social engineering techniques, this book (barring one chapter on social engineering) is largely more technical, detailing hack attacks from information gathering stage through to the hack itself and reporting (if this is done!). A couple of chapters do require technical knowledge, as whilst Mitnick describes a few technical terms, this certainly isn't done comprehensively to allow a novice to fully understand what is going on. As one other reviewer said, Mitnick does intersperse all the 'stories' with experiences from his own life, and whilst this could be construed as egotistical, I found it refreshing and often very funny. Each chapter also details how firms can protect against each attack mentioned, which is very useful, and makes this more than just another hacker culture reference.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mr. L. F. Cash on 4 Sept. 2006
Format: Hardcover
This book is an amazing insight into the exploits and techniques used

by hackers, crackers and social engineers! it really is a truly gripping read which makes you think "Oh I'll read just one more chapter" I don't think I could pick out any real negative points in the book it was consistent throughout providing not only the great stories of the hacks but also offering some wonderful information,

this really is an absolute MUST for any IT or security fanatic and is well worth the money to add such an excellent book to your shelves!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Game Cat on 12 Feb. 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A very interesting collection of stories if you want to look over the shoulders of people who one day may fancy "0wning you". You can get a fell for what they are capable of. Especially regarding patience, single-mindedness and inventiveness in worrying the locks - physical and virtual - until they break. Or in finding that one passage that non-one thought manageable, discoverable or exploitable. Reads like good heist stories without the steamy and ultra-violent parts. And with well-meaning advice to boot.
Some notions of networking required, but neophythes don't need to fear: the authors don't leave you hanging and try to explain the basics - sometimes not too successfully, but then this *is* a hairy subject. Hard-core network admins will not be surprised by anything in here but will get a view of the 'bigger picture' that lies beyond the suspicious activity seen in the log files.
The stories related in the book have, according to the authors, been well-checked an corroborated as explained in the preface. Technically they are absolutely believable.
So what do you get for your money:
Chapter 1: Buy a video poker machine, reverse-engineer it, find out it's predictable then make big bucks in Vegas.
Chapter 2: Try to break into the gov'nmt while being egged on by real (or fake?) Pakistani terrorists.
Chapter 3: Build your own Internet connection from inside prison while running rings around the wardens. The Shawshank Redemption, a bit differently.
Chapter 4: Break into Boeing while there is a computer forensics class in progress. Bad idea!
Chapter 5: The famous Adrian Lamo in action. The New York Times' network is opened up. The Gray Lady then goes into payback mode.
Chapter 6: Your company wants a penetration test?
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By Guy Edwards on 13 Aug. 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Although a somewhat old book now at 8 years old, both the author and publication are well known subjects in the security world. No matter your opinion of the author who has collated the stories from various black hat sources (and who himself famously spent time in incarceration prior to this for IT systems penetration) it's worthwhile to read the publication in order to 'know your enemy' as Sun Tzu would have advised.

Since it's a collection of what appear to be true stories of penetrations of organisations systems, it's a welcome break from drier more technical publications that you might be used to as revision reference and similar. The book features less on technical procedures, checklists and exact tools/procedures and facts and more on the process and social engineering behind real world penetration attacks against the IT industry - as such the book ages well and is still insightful despite the age.

It feels like the majority of stories revolve around the attackers finding overlooked small flaws in a sites security, and then spending time turning this single flaw into a larger penetration, growing in depth of compromise over time. This is quite a contrast to the usual mainstream view of a single flaw causing the compromise of an organisation - the book implies that it's more likely a string of flaws, each on its own not a great issue (and probably existing due to lack of staff time or knowledge) but when combined they provide an attacker with a route in.

The story of the attacker who spends a year breaking into a company also challenges the traditional view of attackers that compromise a system, cause damage or send as much spam as possible until detected and then the issue is fixed by the IT staff.
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