Book review: The Art of Deception

The Art of Deception is a book by Kevin Mitnick that covers the art of social engineering. Part of the book is composed of real stories, and examples of how social engineering can be combined with hacking.


This is a recommended read. It will not teach you how to execute social engineering attacks. It will teach you what the attacks vectors are, what they’re after, what needs to be protected and why someone want’s to use social engineering. The book is well written and informative.

This book brought my attention to another part of security, namely the human element. I would most probably have fallen for an attack if I hadn’t read this book. That’s a fact.

While reading this book, I realized that I had been naive. I got a good look on how other humans are willing to exploit the good in people for their own purposes.

I have some criticism to share.

After a few chapters into the book it starts feeling like you’re reading the same thing over and over again. You’ve got idea on what’s it’s all about and you really don’t need any more information than that. I think the book’s volume could at least be cut in half and it would still serve it’s purpose well.

It’s somewhat of a pain to read but at the same time an absolute must for anyone that’s into computer security . I don’t know whether this book is one of the best or worst, let me know if you have read any else social engineering books that you can recommend.

With social engineering you can bypass the best of firewalls with some deception and social skills. It’s not enough with technical security, you need to firewall your mind as well.

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