FROM KEVIN MITNICK.
True friendship has been defined as one mind in two bodies; not many people in anyone's life can be called a true friend. Jack Biello was a loving and caring person who spoke out against the extraordinary mistreatment I endured at the hands of unethical journalists and overzealous government prosecutors. He was a key voice in the Free Kevin movement and a writer who had an extraordinary talent for writing compelling articles exposing the information that the government doesn't want you to know. Jack was always there to fearlessly speak out on my behalf and to work together with me preparing speeches and articles, and, at one point, represented me as a media liaison.
This book is therefore dedicated with love to my dearest friend Jack Biello, whose recent death from cancer just as we finished the ma.n.u.script has left me feeling a great sense of loss and sadness.
This book would not have been possible without the love and support of my family. My mother, Sh.e.l.ly Jaffe, and my grandmother, Reba Vartanian, have given me unconditional love and support throughout my life. I am so fortunate to have been raised by such a loving and dedicated mother, who I also consider my best friend. My grandmother has been like a second morn to me, providing me with the same nurturing and love that only a mother could give. As caring and compa.s.sionate people, they've taught me the principles of caring about others and lending a helping hand to the less fortunate. And o, by imitating the pattern of giving and caring, I in a sense follow the paths of their lives. I hope they'll forgive me for putting them in second place during the process of writing this book, pa.s.sing up chances to see them with the excuse of work and deadlines to meet. This book would not have been possible without their continued love and support that I'll forever hold close to my heart. deadlines to meet. This book would not have been possible without their continued love and support that I'll forever hold close to my heart.
How I wish my dad, Alan Mitnick, and my brother, Adam Mitnick, would have lived long enough to break open a bottle of champagne with me on the day this book first appears in a bookstore. As a salesman and business owner, my father taught me many of the finer things that I will never forget. During the last months of my Dad's life I was fortunate enough to be able to be at his side to comfort him the best I could, but it was a very painful experience from which I still have not recovered.
My aunt Chickie Leventhal will always have a special place in my heart; although she was disappointed with some of the stupid mistakes I've made, nevertheless she was always there for me, offering her love and support. During my intense devotion to writing this book, I sacrificed many opportunities to join her, my cousin, Mitch Leventhal, and her boyfriend, Dr. Robert Berkowitz, for our weekly Shabbat celebration.
I must also give my warmest thanks to my mother's boyfriend, Steven Knittle, who was there to fill in for me and provide my mother with love and support.
My dad's brother clearly deserves much praise; one could say I inherited my craft of social engineering from Uncle Mitch.e.l.l, who knew how to manipulate the world and its people in ways that I never even hope to understand, much less master. Lucky for him, he never had my pa.s.sion for computing technology during the years he used his charming personality to influence anyone he desired.
He will always hold the t.i.tle of the grand-master social engineer.
And as I write these acknowledgements, I realize I have so many people to thank and to express appreciation to for offering their love, friendship, and support. I cannot begin to remember the names of all the kind and generous people that I've met in recent years, but suffice it to say I would need a computer to store them all. There have been so many people from all over the world who have written to me with words of encouragement, praise, and support. These words have meant a great deal to me, especially during the times I needed it most.
I'm especially thankful to all my supporters who stood by me and spent their valuable time and energy getting the word out to anyone who would listen, voicing their concern and objection over my unfair treatment and the hyperbole created by those who sought to profit from the "The Myth of Kevin Mitnick."
I have had the extraordinary fortune of being teamed up with best-selling author Bill Simon, and we worked diligently together despite our different work patterns. Bill is highly organized, rises early, and works in a deliberate and well-planned style. I'm grateful that Bill was kind enough to accommodate my late-night work schedule. My dedication to this project and long working hours kept me up well into the early morning that conflicted with Bill's regular working schedule.
Not only was I lucky to be teamed with someone who could transform my ideas into sentences worthy of a sophisticated reader, but also Bill is (mostly) a very patient man who put up with my programmer's style of focusing on the details.
Indeed we made it happen. Still, I want to apologize to Bill in these acknowledgments that I will always regret being the one, because of my orientation to accuracy and detail, who caused him to be late for a deadline for the first and only time in his long writing career. He has a writer's pride that I have finally come to understand and share; we hope to do other books together.
The delight of being at the Simon home in Rancho Santa Fe to work and to be pampered by Bill's wife, Arynne, could be considered a highlight of this writing project. Arynne's conversation and cooking will battle in my memory for first place. She is a lady of quality and wisdom, full of fun, who has created a home of warmth and beauty. And I'll never drink a diet soda again without hearing Arynne's voice in the back of my mind admonishing me on the dangers of Aspartame, Stacey Kirkland means a great deal to me. She has dedicated many hours of her time a.s.sisting me on the Macintosh to design the charts and graphics that helped give visual authority to my ideas. I admire her wonderful qualities; she is truly a loving and compa.s.sionate person who deserves only the good things in life. She gave me encouragement as a caring friend and is someone who I care deeply about. I wish to thank her for all her loving support, and for being there for me whenever I needed it.
Alex Kasper, Nexs.p.a.ce, is not only my best friend, but also a business partner and colleague. Together we hosted a popular Internet talk radio show known as "The Darkside of the Internet" on KFI AM 640 in Los Angeles under the skillful guidance of Program Director David G. Hall. Alex graciously provided his invaluable a.s.sistance and advice to this book project. His influence has always been positive and helpful with a kindness and generosity that often extended far beyond midnight. Alex and I recently completed a film/video to help businesses train their people on preventing social engineering attacks.
Paul Dryman, Informed Decision, is a family friend and beyond. This highly respected and trusted private investigator helped me to understand trends and processes of conducting background investigations. Paul's knowledge and experience helped me address the personnel security issues described in Part 4 of this book.
One of my best friends, Candi Layman, has consistently offered me support and love. She is truly a wonderful person who deserves the best out of life. During the tragic days of my life, Candi always offered encouragement and friendship. I am fortunate to have met such a wonderful, caring, and compa.s.sionate human being, and want to thank her for being there for me.
Surely my first royalty check will go to my cellular phone company for all the time I spent talking with Erin Finn. Without a doubt, Erin is like my soul mate.
We are alike in so many ways it's scary. We both have a love for technology, the same tastes in food, music, and movies. AT&T Wireless is definitely losing money for giving me all the "flee nights and weekend" calls to her home in Chicago. At least I am not using the Kevin Mitnick plan anymore.
Her enthusiasm and belief in this book boosted my spirits. How lucky I am to have her as a friend.
I'm eager to thank those people who represent my professional career and are dedicated in extraordinary ways. My speaking engagements are managed by Amy Gray (an honest and caring person who I admire and adore) David Fugate, of Waterside Productions, is a book agent who went to bat for me on many occasions before and after the book contract was signed; and Los Angeles attorney Gregory Vinson, who was on my defense team during my years-long battle with the government. I'm sure he can relate to Bill's understanding and patience for my close attention to detail; he has had the same experience working with me on legal briefs he has written on my behalf.
I have had too many experiences with lawyers but I am eager to have a place to express my thanks for the lawyers who, during the years of my negative interactions with the criminal justice system, stepped up and offered to help me when I was in desperate need. From kind words to deep involvement with my case, I met many who don't at all fit the stereotype of the self-centered attorney. I have come to respect, admire, and appreciate the kindness and generosity of spirit given to me so freely by so many. They each deserve to be acknowledged with a paragraph of favorable words; I will at least mention them all by name, for every one of them lives in my heart surrounded by appreciation: Greg Aclin, Bob Carmen, John Dusenbury, Sherman Ellison, Omar Figueroa, Carolyn Hagin, Rob Hale, Alvin Michaelson, Ralph Peretz, Vicki Podberesky, Donald C. Randolph, Dave Roberts, Alan Rubin, Steven Sadowski, Tony Serra, Richard Sherman, Skip Slates, Karen Smith, Richard Steingard, the Honorable Robert Talcott, Barry Tarlow, John Yzurdiaga, and Gregory Vinson.
I very much appreciate the opportunity that John Wiley & Sons has given me to author this book, and for their confidence in a first-time author. I wish to thank the following Wiley people who made this dream possible: Ellen Gerstein, Bob Ipsen, Carol Long (my editor and fashion designer), and Nancy Stevenson.
Other family members, personal friends, business a.s.sociates who have given me advice and support, and have reached out in many ways, are important to recognize and acknowledge. They are: J. J. Abrams, David Agger, Bob Arkow, Stephen Barnes, Dr. Robert Berkowitz, Dale Coddington, Eric Corley, Delin Cormeny, Ed c.u.mmings, Art Davis, Mich.e.l.le Delio, Sam Downing, John Draper, Paul Dryman, Nick Duva, Roy Eskapa, Alex Fielding, Lisa Flores, Brock Frank, Steve Gibson, Jerry Greenblatt, Greg Grunberg, Bill Handle, David G.
Halt, Dave Harrison, Leslie Herman, Jim Hill, Dan Howard, Steve Hunt, Rez Johar, Steve Knittle, Gary Kremen, Barry Krugel, Earl Krugel, Adrian Lamo, Leo Laporte, Mitch Leventhal, Cynthia Levin, CJ Little, Jonathan Littman, Mark Maifrett, Brian Martin, Forrest McDonald, Kerry McElwee, Alan McSwain, Elliott Moore, Michael Morris, Eddie Munoz, Patrick Norton, Shawn Nunley, Brenda Parker, Chris Pelton, Kevin Poulsen, Scott Press, Linda and Art Pryor, Jennifer Reade, Israel and Rachel Rosencrantz, Mark Ross, William Royer, Irv Rubin, Ryan Russell, Neil Saavedra, Wynn Schwartu, Pete Shipley, Joh Sift, Dan Sokol, Trudy Spector, Matt Spergel, Eliza Amadea Sultan, Douglas Thomas, Roy "Ihcker, Bryan Turbow, Ron Wetzel, Don David Wilson, Darci Wood, Kevin Wortman, Steve Wozniak, and all my friends on the W6NUT (147.435 MHz) repeater in Los Angeles.
And my probation officer, Larry Hawley, deserves special thanks for giving me permission to act as advisor and consultant on security-related matters by authoring this book.
And finally I must acknowledge the men and women of law enforcement. I simply do not hold any malice towards these people who are just doing their jobs.
I firmly believe that putting the public's interest ahead of one's own and dedicating your life to public service is something that deserves respect, and while I've been arrogant at times, I want all of you to know that I love this country, and will do everything in my power to help make it the safest place in the world, which is precisely one of the reasons why I've written this book.
FROM BILL SIMON.
I have this notion that there is a right person out there for everyone; it's just that some people aren't lucky enough ever to find their Mr. or Ms. Right. Others get lucky. I got lucky early enough in life to spend a good many years already (and count on spending many more) with one of G.o.d's treasures, my wife, Arynne.. If I ever forget how lucky I am, I only need to pay attention to how many people seek and cherish her company. Arynne--I thank you for walking through life with me.
During the writing of this book, I counted on the help of a loyal group of friends who provided the a.s.surance that Kevin and I were achieving our goal of combining fact and fascination into this unusual book. Each of these people represents true and loyal value and knows he or she may be called on as I get into my next writing project. In alphabetical order: JeanClaude Beneventi, Linda Brown, Walt Brown, It. Gen. Don Johnson, Dorothy Ryan, Guri Stark, Chris Steep, Michael Steep, and John Votaw.
Special recognition goes to John Lucich, president of the Network Security Group, who was willing to take time for a friend-of a-friend request, and to Gordon Garb, who graciously fielded numerous phone calls about IT operations.
Sometimes in life, a friend earns an exalted place by introducing you to someone else who becomes a good friend. At literary agency Waterside Productions, in Cardiff, California, Agent David Fugate was responsible for conceiving the idea for this book, and for putting me together with co-author-turned-friend Kevin.
Thanks, David. And to the head of Waterside, the incomparable Bill Gladstone, who manages to keep me busy with one book project after another: I'm happy to have you in my corner.
In our home and my office-at-home, Arynne is helped by an able staff that includes administrative a.s.sistant Jessica Dudgeon and housekeeper Josie Rodriguez.
I thank my parents Marjorie and I. B. Simon, who I wish were here on earth to enjoy my success as a writer. I also thank my daughter, Victoria. When I am with her I realize how much I admire, respect, and take pride in who she is.
Scanned by kineticstomp -----------------------------.
Supplement by swift [Chapter 1 -Banned Edition]
Kevin's Story By Kevin Mitnick I was reluctant to write this section because I was sure it would sound self-serving. Well, okay, it is self-serving. But I've been contacted by literally hundreds of people who want to know "who is Kevin Mitnick?". For those who don't give a d.a.m.n, please turn to Chapter 2. For everybody else, here, for what it's worth, is my story.
Kevin Speaks Some hackers destroy people's files or entire bard drives; they're called crackers or vandals. Some novice hackers don't bother learning the technology, but simply download hacker tools to break into computer systems; they're called script kiddies. More experienced hackers with programming skills develop hacker programs and post them to the Web and to bulletin board systems. And then there are individuals who have no interest in the technology, but use the computer merely as a tool to aid them in stealing money, goods, or services. Despite the media-created myth of Kevin Mitnick, I'm not a malicious hacker. What I did wasn't even against the law when I began, but became a crime after new legislation was pa.s.sed. I continued anyway, and was caught. My treatment by the federal government was based not on the crimes, but on making an example of me. I did not deserve to be treated like a terrorist or violent criminal: Having my residence searched with a blank search warrant; being thrown into solitary for months; denied the fundamental Const.i.tutional rights guaranteed to anyone accused of a crime; being denied not only bail but a bail hearing; and being forced to spend years fighting to obtain the government's evidence so my court appointed attorney could prepare my defense.
What about my right to a speedy trial? For years I was given a choice every six months: sign a paper waiving your Const.i.tutional right to a speedy trial or go to trial with an attorney who is unprepared; I chose to sign. But I'm getting ahead of my story. Starting Out my path was probably set early in life. I was a happy-go-lucky kid, but bored. After my father split when I was three, my mother worked as a waitress to support us. To see me then an only child being raised by a mother who put in long, harried days on a sometimes-erratic schedule would have been to see a youngster on his own almost all his waking hours. I was my own babysitter. Growing up in a San Fernando Valley community gave me the whole of Los Angeles to explore, and by the age of twelve I had discovered a way to travel free throughout the whole greater L.A. area. I realized one day while riding the bus that the security of the bus transfer I had purchased relied on the unusual pattern of the paper-punch that the drivers used to mark day, time and route on the transfer slips. A friendly driver, answering my carefully-planted question, told me where to buy that special type of punch. The transfers are meant to let you change buses and continue a journey to your destination, but I worked out how to use them to travel anywhere I wanted to go for free. Obtaining blank transfers was a walk in the park: the trash bins at the bus terminals were always filled with only-partly-used books of transfers that the drivers tossed away at the end of their shifts. With a pad of blanks and the punch, I could mark my own transfers and travel anywhere that L.A. buses went. Before long, I had all but memorized the bus schedules of the entire system. This was an early example of my surprising memory for certain types of information; still, today I can remember phone numbers, pa.s.swords and other items as far back as my childhood. Another personal interest that surfaced at an early age was my fascination with performing magic. Once I learned how a new trick worked, I would practice, practice, and practice until I mastered it. To an extent, it was through magic that I discovered the enjoyment in fooling people. From Phone Phreak, to Hacker my first encounter with what I would eventually learn to call social engineering came about during my high school years, when I met another student who was caught up in a hobby called phone phreaking. Phone phreaking is a type of hacking that allows you to explore the telephone network by exploiting the phone systems and phone company employees. He showed me neat tricks he could do with a telephone, like obtaining any information the phone company had on any customer, and using a secret test number to make long-distances calls for free actually free only to us--I found out much later that it wasn't a secret test number at all: the calls were in fact being billed to some poor company's MCI account).
That was my introduction to social engineering-my kindergarten, so to speak. He and another phone phreaker I met shortly thereafter let me listen in as they each made pretext calls to the phone company. I heard the things they said that made them sound believable, I learned about different phone company offices, lingo and procedures. But that "training" didn't last long; it didn't have to. Soon I was doing it all on my own, learning as I went, doing it even better than those first teachers. The course my life would follow for the next fifteen years had been set.
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One of my all-time favorite pranks was gaining unauthorized access to the telephone switch and changing the cla.s.s of service of a fellow phone phreak.
The publisher decided to remove the chapter shortly before releasing the book.
Wiley representatives were unable to comment immediately on why the chapter was pulled.
The chapter contains the first recounting by Mitnick of his life as a hacker and a fugitive, as well as his arrest, trial and life in prison.
The chapter also includes allegations by Mitnick that John Markoff, technology reporter for The New York Times The New York Times, printed malicious stories about Mitnick during the hacker's years as a fugitive.
The missing chapter was first made publicly available late Sat.u.r.day in a Yahoo discussion group called "Kevin's Story." It has since appeared on other websites.
Mitnick said he didn't know who had posted the chapter online. E-mails to the yahoo.com address listed with the original post went unanswered.
"I feel pretty good about the chapter being available," Mitnick said. "For a long time I was portrayed as the Osama bin Laden of the Internet and I really wanted to be able to tell my side of the story. I wanted to be able to explain exactly what I did and what I didn't do to people who thought they knew me."
Much of the material in the "missing chapter" details Mitnick's dealings with Markoff.
Of primary concern to Mitnick is that Markoff "failed to acknowledge a preexisting relationship" with Mitnick in a July 4, 1994, story that appeared on the front page of The New York Times. The New York Times.
Markoff's story described Mitnick as a highly dangerous hacker capable of breaking into critical government computers and stressed that Mitnick had so far easily evaded law enforcement officials.
Mitnick charges that Markoff was angry at him because of a failed movie deal based on Markoff's 1991 book, Cyberpunk: Outlaws and Hackers on the Cyberpunk: Outlaws and Hackers on the Computer Frontier. Computer Frontier.
At the time of publication, Mitnick disputed the book's veracity but later accepted $5,000 of a total $50,000 offer to act as a consultant for the movie based on the book because he needed the money.
Two years later, when the studio wanted to renew the contract, Mitnick, by then employed, refused to renew. That refusal, according to Mitnick and two sources familiar with the incident, caused the deal to die.
Mitnick said Markoff should have mentioned the failed business deal in his subsequent articles on Mitnick. He also contends that many of the hacks attributed to him by Markoff never happened.
"But trying to prove that you didn't hack something is impossible if people believe you're skilled enough to evade detection," Mitnick said.
Markoff flatly refused to comment on any of Mitnick's allegations in Chapter One.
Mitnick said he wished the chapter could have been published with the book, but that he respected his publisher's decision.
"But obviously, the Internet is a great way to get uncensored, unfiltered information out to the world," Mitnick added. "I'm counting the days until I can go online again."
Mitnick has been banned from using the Internet as a condition of his supervised release. He's free to go online again on January 21, 2003, after close to eight years offline.
The first site he'll visit is his girlfriend's blog.
"She tells me she's been doc.u.menting our entire relationship online," Mitnick said. "I'd love to know what she's been saying about me."
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