Sunday, October 29, 2006

The art of deception

I have just read a book called the art of deception by Kevin Mitnick. Mitnick was a legendary hacker who was such a bad person that he got himself banned from using the internet as well as some jail time. Sometime ago I read a book about various hackers who broke into computer systems and messed with the phone system. I have forgotten why he made FBI's most wanted list for computer crimes. It wasn't as if he was one of those nasty spammers. What I did remember was that at some Mitnick stopped his bad hacking ways for a bit and then ended up with a girlfriend, who he later married. He started hacking again and neglected his wife and stuff. As this is the only thing I can remember from the book, then this is bad. On the back of the book is a picture of Mitnick. He is wearing a suit and has that kind of expensive haircut that says I am en exec. I was appalled. This guy was a computer hacker. He should be wearing jeans and a T-shirt (just like me). However the book is all about how to break into computer systems. This involves talking to users (humans) and getting them to reveal passwords and other important data. Wearing a suit and having an expensive haircut was one way of getting into buildings. There were a lot of good tricks in the book. I have not felt so excited by knowledge since I learnt how to open a Yale lock with a credit card. I wonder if Mitnick is banned for life from using the internet. That seems cruel.