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Guest Thinkers

Career Paths: Notorious Criminal or Security Consultant?

The same basic impulses – insatiable curiosity, good people skills, an appetite for risk – that led Kevin Mitnick into a decade-long game of cat-and-mouse with the FBI are richly rewarded in more prosocial professions.
Interviewer: If you hadn’t found the theater, what do you think you might have been?  



David Mamet: I think it’s very likely I would have been a criminal. It seems to me to be another profession that subsumes outsiders, or perhaps more to the point, accepts people with a not very well-formed ego and rewards the ability to improvise.  


                                                                                – THE PARIS REVIEW

What’s the Big Idea? 



In this clip from our recent interview, legendary hacker-turned-security consultant Kevin Mitnick recalls an incident back in 1981 when he was seventeen: He and a phone-phreaker buddy decide to sneak into Pacific Telephone’s central office in Hollywood. They social-engineer the key code and stroll in nonchalantly. Almost immediately, a security guard catches them. Typically this kind of story ends with a weeping phone call to Mom. But Kevin Mitnick was notyour typical seventeen-year-old . . .


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