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Kevin Mitnick has been commissioned to pen another book on the art of hacking and wants you to do the grunt research work for him.

America's "most-wanted" computer outlaw, who spent five years in the clink, is calling on fellow Net naughties to submit stories of their exploits for inclusion in a book tentatively titled The Art of Intrusion. Mitnick is offering up a paltry 500 bones to the hacker that supplies 'the most provocative' story of deception and network intrusion. The lucky winner will also receive a copy of Mitnick's first book The Art of Deception signed by no less than Mitnick himself. What a treat!

So why doesn't Mitnick just regale the hungry public with stories of his own fantastic exploits and then sign a book for himself?

"My plea agreement (with the Feds) restricts me from telling stories of my own hacks until January 2010, which is why I'm looking for stories from people like you," Mitnick writes on his Web site.

"I guarantee to absolutely protect your identity (remember, I did NOT cooperate with law enforcement during their prosecution of me); if you prefer, you and I will arrange our conversation so that I don't know who you are. Unless you ask that your real name be used, I'll tell your story told under an alias name of your choice. Of course, I will have to somehow verify the accuracy of your story prior to publishing it in the book."

Is $500 enough to endure a painful verification process with Mitnick, especially considering a spot in his book may raise the interest of the Feds? Probably not. Some hackers, however, do have a strong lust for publicity and riding on Mitnick's coattails would be the perfect way to satiate this need.

But don't think it will be easy to win this sexy hack contest. We'll be sure to submit our own story about the time we used a bag of peanuts to coax an elephant to carry a Cobalt Qube into Intel's Oregon chip design HQ. Once in the engineers' good graces, the beast managed to give El Reg direct access to future Itanic designs. Strangely, the spec sheets were blank.

Think you can beat that? Shoot Kevin a line here

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

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