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Steal This Computer Book 4.0 : What They Won't Tell You About the Internet

by Wallace Wang
??(39 customer reviews)
Paperback: Saturday, April 01, 2006 (No Starch Press)
List Price: $29.95
?? Price: $19.77
You Save: $10.18

Editorial Reviews
If ever a book on cyberculture wore a fedora and trench coat and leaned against a lamppost on a foggy street, this is the one. It is an unabashed look at the dark side of the Net--the stuff many other books gloss over. It's hard-edged, wisecracking, and often quite cynical as it pours over the reality of online scams, illegal activities, and simple annoyances.

Wang's stated goal is to open the reader's eyes about what's really there. He shows what's being done, how it's being done, and how to avoid problems or even strike back. He begins with a chapter about the news media, and his message is that no source is to be trusted completely. He examines issues important to Internet users: the cost of getting computerized (with tips on how to find the real bargains), who is using the Internet as a source of hate information, and how your privacy can be invaded and protected.

He shows you the secrets of malicious hackers and others and how some of them attack computer systems without the ethical mindset typical of the original, idealistic hackers. Wang shows you how you can set up your defenses against such an onslaught, discussing how to protect yourself and your kids from online stalkers and how online con games work.

Wang never claims that the Internet is the electronic den of darkness that the pop media make it out to be. But he makes it clear that something this big has its lowlights--it's own "net noir." His messages are "know your enemy" and "be careful who you trust," an ideology verified by the examples he provides. --Elizabeth Lewis

Book Description
This offbeat, non-technical book examines what hackers do, how they do it, and how readers can protect themselves. The completely revised fourth edition of this bestseller (over 150,000 copies sold) adopts the same informative, irreverent, and entertaining style that made the first three editions a huge success. New chapters discuss the hacker mentality, lock picking, exploiting P2P file sharing networks, and how people manipulate search engines and pop-up ads. Includes a CD with hundreds of megabytes of hacking and security-related programs that tie-in to each chapter in the book.

Reader Reviews

Not even close to a hacker book., Monday, November 17, 2003

Fist of all it is a cracker not a hacker. A hacker is some one who enjoys learning about computers and breaks down software to learn about it. Cracking is attacking another computer. Second of all it uses Visual Basic. VB is THE worst programming language. No hacker or cracker would recommend the use of such. It tells you how to be a Skript Kiddie. A SK is some one who uses other peoples software and goes around saying they are a hacker or a cracker. Thirdly virus writers aren't good people. They are niether hackers or crackers. They are black hat crackers(NOT HACKERS). A cracker has ethics and is often reffered to as a white hat hacker. Blacks do bad things, and get little benefit if not zero, but merely enjoy ruining other peoples computers. Black hat hackers are usually SKs with a wee bit more knowledge.

If you want to be a hacker(which if you are a good one, means you can probably crack), I recommend using Linux, learning C and C++, Networking, A+ certified(don't actually get certified but get a book, it provides basic hardware info). Get to know GCC and become fluent in C and C++. If you know no language and they will be your first, I recommend Python. Python is a good starting language. But first of all switch to Linux. use and for info and free software. That'll start you up. Oh yeah...never use the "elite" jargon. If you use this you are no cracker you are a SK.

Amusing and informative., Thursday, December 19, 2002

A great way of teaching some of the less enlightened about computer saftey some of the ins and outs. It has some wonderful information. One complaint: it doesn't really *tell* you how to certain things, just hints at how you could find out.

Highly recommended.

Misleading, Basic Hacker Ha!, Friday, January 04, 2002

Anyone can direct you to sites about hacking. I probably found 2-3 sites useful. Not that I want to hack into a computer or thought that a book would explain how to do it but thought there might be some detailed hsitory into hacking and maybe some bios of actual hackers. It is not even worth reading. It is far outdated as technology tends to be.

A good book...if you're a lobotomized 1950's technobrain, Thursday, July 20, 2000

Wally-boy really did it with this book. I bought it (and blew like, a huge load of money for such a poorly, overstated book that is hardly worth the paper it's written on)...I expected at least some type of introduction to something truly elite...However, if you're one of those warez d00dz (and you know who you are...crackers (who loudly call themselves supa leet hax0rs) who are named DrDeath, FinalFury, NukeTheWhales and other ridiculously unintimidating names, this book is for you.

However, for you other, half-normal (and those possessing at least half of a slightly functional brain)...Don't waste your time. This book is downtrodden with cynical humor (not that I mind, this was one of the only enjoyable aspects of the book)...Wang makes an attempt (and misses by about twelve feet) to introduce the reader/bored hacker to the (ooooo...this is the cue for spooky music) the...(GASP!) HACKER UNDERGROUND! What a creeping horror...

The main interests in this book surround political problems and simple explanations of what are actually interesting concepts. Wang, with a strained effort, I'm sure, managed to dumb-down, hash up, and generally take the reader for having the IQ of a brick (or a football jock, whichever you prefer). Concepts covered are encryption (this is somewhat worthwhile, as it explains PGP and Blowfish fairly well as well as stynography (only spelled right) which is hiding text and messages in graphics)

This is more of the book for people who WANT to be hackers, rather than being a hacker. Perhaps, in retrospect, this is explained in the first few paragraphs of the book as Wang exclaims "this book will not make you a hacker more than reading a military manual will make you a soldier" as if he is already aware that there are swarms of kids who will read this book and brand themselves "SUPA LEET HACKER! " without ever really experiencing (or knowing) the true hacker mindset...

Overall, if you're looking for good information, turn your back on this book. Rather than dishing out twenty bucks for it, look around online. I guarantee that you will find information that is much better than what is portrayed in this book.

DONT BUY THIS, Friday, June 23, 2000

I do NOT reccomend this book. I ordered it, and I thought that maybe something useful would be in it... all this book does is explain "WHAT" hackers do, not "HOW" they do it... if you are looking for a HOW book, i reccomend Maximum Linux Security... dont hesitate to buy that one, you wont put it down! (until the last few chapters where it kinda starts getting repetitious) but it is a GREAT how book if you ask me.

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