Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Book Excerpt: Ghost in the Wires — My Adventures as the World’s Most Wanted Hacker

In his newly published autobiography, America’s most famous ex-hacker, Kevin Mitnick, tells his own story for the first time. In this excerpt, Mitnick describes his 1992 investigation into the mystery hacker “Eric,” who’d begun pumping him for information. Mitnick’s spy-versus-spy duel with the hacker would launch a chain of events destined to turn Mitnick into the most-wanted computer criminal in the country.


We’re told that our medical records are confidential, shared only when we give specific permission. But the truth is that any federal agent, cop, or prosecutor who can convince a judge he has legitimate reason can walk into your pharmacy and have them print out all of your prescriptions and the date of every refill. Scary.

We’re also told that the records kept on us by government agencies — Internal Revenue Service, Social Security Administration, the DMV of any particular state, and so on — are safe from prying eyes. Maybe they’re a little safer now than they used to be — though I doubt it — but in my day, getting any information I wanted was a pushover.


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