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Stealing The Network: How to Own the Box Paperback – May 15 2003

4.5 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Syngress; 1 edition (May 15 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1931836876
  • ISBN-13: 978-1931836876
  • Product Dimensions: 18.8 x 2.4 x 23.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 658 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #4,720 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


"...the reader will find this an informative, instructive and even entertaining book." - Managing Risk magazine

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Target Audience
Anyone with an interest in network security and wants to look into the mind of a network cracker/hacker.
This book is mostly a series of fictional stories written in first-person narrative on what happens during a network attack or an investigation into an attack.
The book is divided into the following chapters: Hide And Seek; The Worm Turns; Just Another Day At The Office; h3X's Adventures In Networkland; The Thief No One Saw; Flying The Friendly Skies; dis-card; Social (in)Security; BabelNet; The Art Of Tracking; The Laws Of Security
All too often the topic of network security becomes an academic exercise, until it's too late. Companies might know what they should do, and they might even think they are beyond attack. But to a motivated person, your system may be nothing more than swiss cheese. Stealing The Network takes you beyond the technical and into the psychology of an attack.
Stealing The Network is a series of fictional stories about network attacks of various sorts. Hide And Seek is an attack on a company's network by a person upset with poor customer service. He steals a credit card file and posts it for others to use. The Worm Turns is an all-night hacking session to dissect the latest internet virus and post a patch before any of the other anti-virus firms do so. Just Another Day At The Office is a story of hacking for organized crime against a firm developing a new type of land mine, and involves both network and physical building intrusion. While it might be easy to dismiss these as the result of a vivid imagination, the reality is that all of these attacks are done on a daily basis. They may even have happened to you at your company, and you just don't know it yet.
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Format: Paperback
I saw this book on the shelves and started flipping through it. Next thing I know it was a half hour later and I was still sitting on the floor with the same book in my lap.
In particular I wanted to read the chapter about H3x's adventure in networkland, since it seemed the most intriguing. She's a sexy female hacker that hits nightclubs and has a neon social life - so already we know the story is fiction, right?
I noticed that the author of one of the chapters posted a review. I didn't pay attention to which chapter and don't have the book in front of me, but he states that all the methods used are possible. Well, you can't have a technical book without subjecting it to technical scrutiny. Here's where the meat of my review weighs in: H3x's adventures sometimes make no sense, and other times are technically wrong. Let me explain.
First she realizes the changes she made on the routers at a university were logged to a syslog server, so she hacks that to cover her tracks by taking out the network address she used. Nevermind that she configured the routers to point a GRE tunnel to her home network, and then set "0wn3d" (or something similar) as the interface desription. Isn't that like sneaking tiptoe through a house late at night with a blaring stereo on your shoulders? And what kind of pipe would be going into her home to be able to keep up with an ethernet connection on a campus network? At this point everything is still technically possible, although somewhat unbelievable. Still - this is fiction after all.
The administrators catch wind of this and do all the obligatory password and community string changes, tightening of security with access lists and pant-wetting.
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By A Customer on Sept. 8 2003
Format: Paperback
Not much scares me. I've seen a lot in my life. As a security engineer, this book scares. It makes me want to quit my day job and just go sell suntan lotion on the beach.
All of the things the reader is shown in the book can be defended. The problem lies in the resources available to the reader in trying to defend their crown jewels. Sure, there are plenty of free tools available to do nearly every job; but how much time do you have to set them all up, tune them, reconfigure and update as needed and review the output? I know we would need to up our IT security labor budget 1000% to cover all of this.
Chances are, this book is going to open your eyes to the way you think an intrusion may work. You may think that one vulnerability will be your downfall. With this book, the people who know will show you how a malicious hacker will slip through the cracks between you systems.
As an owner of dozens of IT security books, this is one that gets a space where I can easily access it and read it again and again.
Forget the Freddy vs. Jason battle; these people are showing you how the fight is being brought to your cube. Oh yeah, it's on!
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Format: Paperback
"Stealing the Network" (STN) is an entertaining and informative look at the weapons and tactics employed by those who attack and defend digital systems. STN is similar to the "Hacker's Challenge" books published by Osborne, although the stories are not separated into evidence and resolution sections. Rather, a collection of authors use mildly fictional tales to introduce readers to tactics and techniques used by black and white hat hackers.
My favorite chapter was written by FX of Phenoelit, where a female black hat battles white hat defenders. The playing field includes HP printers, GRE tunnels between routers, and other novel tricks. Reading both sides of the story was fun and educational. I also liked Joe "Kingpin" Grand's insider theft case (ch 3), featuring Palm hacks and Blackberry sniffing. The worm disassembly chapter by Ryan Russell and Tim Mullen is worth reading as well.

This book is worth reading, but it's $... cover price is steep. While the stories are fictional, much of it is probably based on the author's experiences either consulting or studying similar incidents. This book can best be used by security professionals to test how they would have responded to the threats presented by the fictional adversaries profiled in STN. There's plenty to be learned by reading STN, and I hope to see sequels.
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