Social Engineering 101: Mitnick and other hackers show how it’s done

July 20, 2008 – 12:32 PM

Kevin Mitnick knows that the weakest link in any security system is the person holding the information.

As a young fugitive hacker, he went to jail for breaking into computer networks, mostly by using his cunning and persuasion than his tech skills. He was an early master of the science of social engineering — manipulating people into doing what you want, such as giving out passwords and other information that unlocks sensitive information on networks.

Mitnick and a panel of other hackers discussed their social engineering pranks and gave live demonstrations at the Live HOPE (Hackers on Planet Earth) conference late on Saturday.

“Everything happened more than five years ago” and the statute of limitations has passed, he said. “I never said I didn’t deserve to be punished, but it really went overboard putting me in solitary confinement” for eight months.


You must be logged in to post a comment.