Kevin Mitnick: The World's Most Famous Hacker

Everything You Need to Know About Kevin Mitnick,
the Former #1 Authority on Hacking, Social Engineering, and Security Awareness Training

Famous or Infamous? You Decide.

Cyber Incursion 228

Kevin Mitnick was once the most elusive cyber invader in history— coined by CNN, Fox News, and other prestigious networks as “The World’s Most Famous Hacker.” 

The World’s Most Famous Hacker? That’s quite the title, but trust us, it was well-earned. 

Kevin was the catalyst of the information security industry, a best-selling author, a renowned security speaker, and the head of an elite information security firm with a 100% success rate. 

All of that began with Kevin’s action-packed rise through the ranks of hackers worldwide, driven by an insatiable curiosity, a passion for seemingly impossible challenges, and an unstoppable sense of humor.

Cyber Incursion 228

Kevin Mitnick’s Biography: Who Was Kevin Mitnick?

Kevin Mitnick - Early Years 3
Kevin Mitnick - Early Years 3

Born Aug 6, 1963, Kevin David Mitnick grew up immersed in the era of newly emerging phone and computer technology. And, boy, did it fascinate him. Kevin spent much of his youth tinkering with the latest tech— gathering with fellow “phone phreaks” over pizza to talk about their latest landline pranks as the originators of what was soon to become cyber social engineering

As Kevin grew from a teenager to a young man, so too did his knowledge of phones, computers, and programming, as well as his bravado to gain unauthorized access to the sensitive information they stored. By the late ’80s and throughout the early ’90s, Kevin landed himself at the top of the FBI’s Most Wanted list for hacking into dozens of major corporations just to see if he could. 

But contrary to the dark, low-brow cybercriminal the media and law enforcement portrayed him as, Kevin’s breaches were never meant for financial gain or harm. They were always about the adventure, the adrenaline rush. Kevin was a “trophy hunter”: a pursuer of big, shiny prizes merely to prove he could win. And let’s not forget the sheer humor of outwitting “all things establishment” and arrogant tech-heads.

But unauthorized access is still unauthorized access— regardless of ill will. For three years, Kevin went on the run, using false identities and fleeing from city to city to resist arrest until cornered in a final showdown with the Feds, who would stop at nothing to bring him down. In 1995, he was finally forced to serve five years of hard time by those who feared the extent of his digital power.

The “FREE KEVIN” Movement

Free Kevin Movement - Protesters

After Kevin’s five-year sentencing, the hacking community revolted against what they called a gross injustice. Many thought, “Doesn’t the FBI have more dangerous criminals to find and prosecute than a mischievous trickster gaining unauthorized access for fun— not a dangerous felon?”  

A revolt sprung, and news channels rolled clips of protesters holding bright yellow signs reading, “FREE KEVIN!” 

Eventually, they did indeed free Kevin— but only after five years, 8 ½ months of which was in solitary confinement. After his release, Kevin turned a corner. The end of his criminal prosecution was the beginning of what would become a lifelong career as a highly-revered and trusted White Hat penetration tester.


FREE KEVIN Movement - Brochure Exterior

FREE KEVIN Movement- Brochure Interior

In the end, Kevin’s creativity, skills, and persistence, alongside an outspoken, united hacker community vying for his freedom, forced the authorities to rethink the way they pursued cyber breaches. Those ripples brought permanent changes to the way companies and people protect their most sensitive information. Kevin Mitnick’s story became legendary and served as the basis for many books, articles, films, and TV programs.




Kevin Mitnick’s Specialties & Expertise

The Rise of Mitnick Security

In 2003, Kevin started Mitnick Security to identify and mitigate cybersecurity threats for governments, enterprises, and organizations.

He and his Global Ghost Team™ were challenged to breach some of the strongest security infrastructures around, mimicking the tactics real threat actors would use to penetrate multi-million dollar companies.

Social Engineering

As the world’s leading authority on the topic, Kevin created the security industry’s standard for social engineering testing in his early phone phreaking days. Who better to trust than the OG social engineer?

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Penetration Testing

Kevin's Global Ghost Team tests the best defenses for security vulnerabilities and offers expert mitigation advice.

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Virtual Events, Keynote Speaking & Live Hacking

Kevin's sense of humor and insatiable curiosity made him quick on his feet— and even quicker on the keyboard. Watch him in action and see how he taught valuable lessons in cybersecurity, right before your eyes, in his virtual demonstrations. 

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Kevin Mitnick’s Legacy

Kevin Mitnick Best Hacking Demo Explained
Kevin Mitnick Best Hacking Demo Explained

In July 2023, Kevin passed away from pancreatic cancer. For many years, Kevin and The Global Ghost Team™ set forth to help companies strengthen their cybersecurity and protect themselves against the growing methodologies of hackers.

Kevin Mitnick was an inspiration to many, both in cybersecurity and outside of the field, and he leaves behind a legacy that will impact the cybersecurity industry for years to come. With the knowledge passed down to The Global Ghost Team™, Mitnick Security still boasts a 100% success rate of social engineering penetration testing and continues to implement the same standards and mindset Kevin had.

Kevin Mitnick’s Work

Cybersecurity Books

Kevin Mitnick was the proud author of four books, which earned him a spot on The New York Times Bestseller’s list. From his thrilling autobiography of becoming the world’s most famous hacker to his educational content about social engineering and major security threats, his work is still just as captivating on paper today as he was on screen.

buy-invisibility buy-ghost-1buy-intrusion-1buy-deception-1


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Expert Witness & Authority Figure

Decades of experience compromising systems made Kevin an esteemed source of almost everything cyber security. He provided expert witness services for major brands and had been a commentator, security analyst, and interview subject for almost every major news outlet around the globe.

Kevin was retained by several United States governmental agencies, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Social Security Administration, and the Federal Aviation Administration. The United States Courts had also requested Kevin’s services as a keynote speaker for a cybercrime conference for the United States Courts.


Interviews & Shows

Kevin made appearances on popular television programs, educating everyday watchers on cyber threats at large. He’s even had a National Geographic special created about his life, telling the story of his journey from novice teenager phone phreak to the world-renowned penetration tester he became. 

In addition to appearing on local network news programs, he had also made appearances on 60 Minutes, Dr. Phil, Rachel Ray, VICE - Motherboard, BBC World News, CNBC, CBS, CBC, CNN, Fox News, The Learning Channel, Tech TV’s Screen Savers, Court TV, Good Morning America, CNN’s Burden of Proof, Street Sweep, and Talkback Live, National Public Radio and as a guest star on ABC’s spy drama “Alias.”

Remembering the World’s Most Famous Hacker Through Mitnick Security

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Kevin laid the foundation for many cybersecurity innovations, including how ethical hacking should be conducted and why it’s more important now than ever. Without Kevin, there would be no Mitnick Security, but there also wouldn’t be the progress ethical hackers worldwide have made in hacking for the greater good. In memorial of his revolutionary achievements, techniques, and unique personality, we provide services just how Kevin would: with the intent to provide the most insight and unmatched services, all while having a little fun.

See how we simplify the complexity of cybersecurity and give you the actionable data and reporting you need to protect your organization with our security services.

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GISEC 2019 - Dubai - USB Ninja