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Kevin Mitnick

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Kevin David Mitnick (born August 6, 1963) is one of the most famous criminal hackers to be jailed and convicted. Mitnick's last arrest was by the FBI on February 15, 1995 -- he was charged with breaking into some of the United States' most "secure" computer systems.


Kevin Mitnick's criminal activities, arrest, and trial were controversial, and have caused some computer industry journalists to raise legal and ethical questions concerning the events surrounding him.

The core of the controversy came from two books that presented varying facts that were at odds with one another: John Markoff and Tsutomu Shimomura's Takedown, and Jonathan Littman's The Fugitive Game. In particular, Littman made allegations of journalistic impropriety against Markoff, of overzealous prosecution of Mitnick by the government, of mainstream media over-hyping of Mitnick's actual crimes, and of the legality of Shimomura's involvement in the matter. Further controversy came over the release of the movie Takedown, with Littman alleging that portions of the film were taken from his book without permission.

The case against Mitnick was an important one. It tested then nascent laws that had been enacted for dealing with computer crime, and it raised public awareness of security issues involving networked computers. The controversy remains, however, as Mitnick is often used today as an example of the quintessential criminal hacker, despite the fact that his activities are thought to have been far less damaging and significant than those of other computer criminals of the time.


Kevin also usually makes semiannual appearances on the popular, late-night radio show Coast to Coast AM.


  • Takedown: The Pursuit and Capture of Kevin Mitnick, America's Most Wanted Computer Outlaw-By the Man Who Did It, by Tsutomu Shimomura (ISBN 0786889136) (Give only some facts and a lot of lie's.)
  • The Fugitive Game: Online with Kevin Mitnick, by Jonathan Littman (ISBN 0316528587)
  • The Art of Deception: Controlling the Human Element of Security, by Kevin Mitnick (Hardback ISBN 0471237124)
  • The Art of Deception: Controlling the Human Element of Security, by Kevin Mitnick (Paperback ISBN 076454280X)
  • The Art Of Intrusion: The Real Stories Behind The Exploits Of Hackers, Intruders, And Deceivers, by Kevin Mitnick (ISBN 0764569597)

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