Computer Crime Research Center



Date: April 23, 2005

from the interview with Kevin Mitnik.

Hackers are often portrayed in the media as nerds who can't get the girl. The hackers in your book don't fit the stereotype; they often have very advanced social skills that they use to gain access to 'secure' systems.

In Italy there's a guy, Raoul Chiesa, and he's like the Italian Kevin Mitnick. We were out last night and this guy is picking up on every girl that walks by, and the girls are interested.

This guy has all the social graces in the world, and doesn't fit the hacker stereotype. A hacker can be a total geek with no social graces, or he can be a great salesman or saleswoman. But natural born hackers all have that mindset: how to think around obstacles, like being good at solving puzzles.

The hackers in the book are generally responsible people. Do any hackers scare you?

The people who are scary are the people in China, like the Xfocus group. Don't forget that China has been oppressed; [people are] not even able to visit Western news sites.

So you have some very talented people out there who are very angry at the oppression and they spend a lot of time hacking, in the sense of discovering vulnerabilities. Some of these guys are several steps ahead, and they don't call Microsoft and say: 'Hey, we found these vulnerabilities.' They just use them.

Is hacking becoming more sinister?

What happens if a hacker passes vulnerabilities to other governments who use it to do a bit of military espionage? You never know. Maybe the Xfocus guys are purist hackers, but other exploits are being sold. Governments buy them. What about if Al Qaeda starts buying them?

It all comes down to money now. In Russia, for example, a lot of guys target large e-commerce sites and steal their SQL databases containing credit card information.
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2006-02-20 08:45:01 - Your site is realy very interesting. Mishel
2005-04-29 22:12:23 - This guy is really ugly Mat
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