Colbert: U.S. Should ‘Unleash’ Kevin Mitnick As A Secret Weapon

We all know that the fake news shows like The Daily Show and Colbert Report are a lot smarter and more informative than the nightly “GlobalCarWreckStrangerAbductionSportsHighlight” montage that passes for the local news. Last night’s interview of famed hacker and security consultant Kevin Mitnick on the Colbert report proved it again.

We all know that the fake news shows like The Daily Show and Colbert Report are a lot smarter and more informative than the nightly “GlobalCarWreckStrangerAbductionSportsHighlight” montage that passes for the local news. Last night’s interview of famed hacker and security consultant Kevin Mitnick on the Colbert report proved it again.

In an interview with Comedy Central host Stephen Colbert wondering aloud whether the U.S. Government shouldn’t be hiring folks like Mitnick as “secret weapons” against China and other governments who are crawling over our sensitive government and private sector networks. Great question, Stephen!

Mitnick’s technical as well as social engineering skills are legendary. The 48 year-old, who spent five years in prison and now runs his own consulting firm, was held in solitary confinement for a year because the authorities feared he might be able to hack into U.S. military Web sites with just a phone call. In 2009, he was famously cut off from his own Facebook account when the company assumed that the account was a fake.

The interview was part of Mitnick’s press tour for his new book, “Ghost in the Wires: My Adventures as the World’s Most Wanted Hacker.” In it, Colbert asks Mitnick about how he got involved in hacking, his early days as a prankster and phone phreaker and about the five years he spent in prison for a series of hacks in the 1990s against telecommunications- and technology firms.

When the subject of Mitnick’s now legendary ability to compromise computer networks came up, Colbert wondered aloud whether the U.S. government shouldn’t hire Mitnick to work for it – given that the “Chinese are crawling all over our networks.” “Couldn’t we unleash you?” Colbert wonders aloud. Of course, the idea of a offensive cyber corps of experts like Mitnick is a great idea. Its also one that Uncle Sam, for all its bluster about “recruiting” at hacker cons, doesn’t have a very good plan to achieve. The truth is, Mitnick’s past criminal activity would almost certainly disqualify him from government work – an obstacle that prevents many of the most talented security experts from contributing their talents to the defense of their nation. 

Check out the video here

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Discussion

  • Anonymous on

    "We all know that the fake news shows like The Daily Show and Colbert Report are a lot smarter and more informative than the nightly "GlobalCarWreckStrangerAbductionSportsHighlight" montage that passes for the local news"

     

    Ok seriously, some idiot at kaspersky REALLY needs to understand what REAL news and journalism is.  Obviously Mr. Roberts does NOT if he thinks Colbert or Stewart are REAL news.  Shame on you Kaspersky for letting this author make such comments.  I see now why I don't use your products anymore.

     

    I just enjoy the humor from your newsletters

  • asmiller-ke6seh on

    I disagree - both with labeling The Daily Show and the Colbert Report as "fake news shows" or that the information provided on these two shows are not "REAL news". While liberally mixed with healthy doses of sarcasm and hyperbolae, the FACTS provided by The Daily Show and The Colbert Report are no less true just beacuse it is presented in a comedy format.

    On the other hand, cable channel Fox News Network is mostly opinion mixed liberally with distorted truths and misinterpretations of the facts behind the news.

  • ScarredByKaroake on

    "In an interview with Comedy Central host Stephen Colbert wondering aloud whether the U.S. Government shouldn't be hiring folks like Mitnick as "secret weapons" against China and other governments who are crawling over our sensitive government and private sector networks. "

    Really? This hurts my brain.

    But, guess that is just dumbed down version of popular support.......

  • Anonymous on

    "was held in solitary confinement for a year because the authorities feared he might be able to hack into U.S. military Web sites with just a phone call" =  It would have been much cheaper to fire the army imbeciles that refused to realize they have a brain - and use it -  instead of depriving a smart guy from his freedom.

    Anyway, taking Kevin out of the refrigerator right now is like attempting to defend from bullets with a 16th century armor. The guy's just a pile of rust now, he used to be good in the times that all the IT in the world could have been documented in one single book.

  • Anonymous on

    "The truth is, Mitnick's past criminal activity would almost certainly disqualify him from government work - an obstacle that prevents many of the most talented security experts from contributing their talents to the defense of their nation. "

    really?? where's the source or verification of that bold statement? The truth is that both the US gov. and the security industry at large hire past and active hackers on a regular basis. In fact, Mitnick "worked" for the FBI so just that invalidates your hypothesis
    "Mitnick's technical as well as social engineering skills are legendary. "

    missinformed! Mitnick's technical skills have always been laughable. He always used other people's tools for his antics because he could't code a hello world to save his prison-bound arse

  • EJ on

    To believe that the US doesn't already have a team of hackers actively working on various foreign network security initiatives is to be completely naive.   Like Seal Team 6, you won't hear anything about them until their work is long completed, and with the constant need for their services, you won't hear official acknowledgement of their existence for a very long time.

  • formerpunk on

    (From outside U.S.)

    The "hacker" stereotype is very negative to I.T. people.

    I work in I.T., I'm not a hacker, but several times I have been rejected from jobs. Sometimes, I go to a job interview, and while Im filling an exam, I can heard from the room next to me, some job recruiter telling other people, that Im a hacker, terrorist, whatever.

    Because when  I was younger I used to be a punk, and been in antiwar protests and that sort of stuff.

    Many goverments seems to be more concern about people that disagre with them, and treat them as the worst of criminals, even if they're not involved in criminal activities. The worst thing I ever made, was stealing some beers from a convenience store, and was very few times.

    In my case, and my country, I haven't been aproached by the goverment, like Mitnick. Instead, I have been contacted by several political groups, or religious groups, from both left & right, in ways, similar to what Scientologists in the U.S. do. Of course, I ignore them.

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