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44 Reviews
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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars You've lost 75 cents of computer time? Panic!
Spy stories are great fun. James Bond, Tom Clancy... And Now Cliff Stoll, with only one minor difference.
This one's true.
In the Eighties, Clifford Stoll ran out of money for his research into Astronomy at the University of Berkeley and was 'recycled' into the lab's computer division. A couple of days into his new job, his boss brought an interesting problem to...
Published on 13 Nov. 2000

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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Readable, but could be half the length
This is a book about an academic chasing a hacker in the days when this was a rare and for the most part, irrelevant act in the eyes of the FBI etc.

It's set in 1986, so expect references to old machines such as VAXes and BSD vs AT&T Unix etc - great for us old geeks, otherwise a bit obscure.

Cliff Stoll does a passable job at explaining hacking and...
Published on 13 Dec. 2006 by Joe Briar


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5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic read!, 13 July 2012
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Although now dated in term of technology, this is a fascinating insight into the dawn of hacking and the security industry that has now grown up since those days. Some of the methods used (simple/default passwords) are just as applicable today, and real wake up call to some of us! Well written and gripping, a highly recommended book for anyone involved in information security.
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5.0 out of 5 stars This book was recommended in the Families First Magazine published by Mothers' Union, 16 April 2014
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Mrs. E. Parker (UK) - See all my reviews
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initially I borrowed the book from the library. As an elderly woman not very into computing I was surprised to find that I understood a lot of the technical details and the true story of espionage in the dawn of the computing world was very gripping. Cliff Stott compiled a good story from his diaries and notebooks of the time. i purchased two copies from Amazon for my sons...
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4.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating, true account of one man's heroic efforts to track down a spy, 8 Jan. 2014
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I couldn't put this book down. In the midst of all the exposures of the workings of government by Snowden and Assange, this is a tale of the opposite - one man's battle to expose a computer hacker who threatened the heart of the US military machine. I won't spoil the book by revealing the ending. I shall say no more, for fear of doing just that!
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5.0 out of 5 stars A dam good read., 31 Aug. 2013
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Having worked with computers in various roles for the last 30 years I found the book fasinating. Now with the firewalls, virus detection programs and tracking facilites of the internet it was interesting to step back in time and remind myself of what it was like in the eighties. An excellent and compelling read, I could not put the book down.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book, 19 Nov. 2011
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This is a book that you really will struggle to put down. What adds to the draw of this is that it is all true. If you have an interest in computing it is a must although you can still enjoy even if you know nothing about computers.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unbelievable...simply amazing, 1 April 2002
Like the previous reviewer said, this man has brains...
Knowing next to nothing about computers, and thrusted into the position of looking after a bank of Californian Super Computers, Clifford Stoll was in an unenviable position. Soon, he was rubbing shoulders with the 3 letter "entities", as they came to be called, and tracking a faceless spy on the other side of the Earth.
Cliff describes his frustrations, his joy, everything - amazing book! Buy it!...
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Page-turner, 9 Dec. 2014
A fascinating book about the hacker and the man who brought him down. Very funny and also very interesting read. A page-turner. Highly recommendable.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, 30 Sept. 2013
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This review is from: The Cuckoo's Egg (Paperback)
Amazing and a true story. For IT professionals and geeks like me this is a must read! Would love to see a movie on this
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5.0 out of 5 stars Seminal, 14 Feb. 2015
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Required reading for anyone who works in the field, or just anyone who enjoys a good (and true) spy story, well told.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not just a spy story..., 12 May 2008
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S. Bentley "stuarthoratiobentley" (North Yorkshire) - See all my reviews
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So Cliff Stoll, astronomer, gets a job as a computer bod at Berkeley. He comes across a discrepancy in accounting of about 75 cents for computer time and when he investigates further he finds out that there is much more going on than meets the eye.

Written with a good sense of humour, this book cracks along, taking us through the various stages of Cliff's investigation, from what he was doing on a technical basis, to his encounters with the American Intelligence Services (yes, there's an obvious joke there), to his relationship with his girlfriend. Because he writes about his own low knowledge levels (being a novice techie at the time)this allows him to explain the concepts being dealt with, such as operating system stuff. Thus the book acts as a good primer for understanding networking and the nascent internet of the day, as well as how hackers would go about breaking into systems. (There's also a recipe for cookies in there. Cliff is not one for forgetting the smaller things in life.)

I enjoyed it greatly. The information here is probably a bit outdated, but it's an intriguing story nonetheless.
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