Spam Nation: The Inside Story of Organized Cybercrime—from Global Epidemic to Your Front Door (Hardcover)
Now a New York Times bestseller!
There is a Threat Lurking Online with the Power to Destroy Your Finances, Steal Your Personal Data, and Endanger Your Life.
In Spam Nation, investigative journalist and cybersecurity expert Brian Krebs unmasks the criminal masterminds driving some of the biggest spam and hacker operations targeting Americans and their bank accounts. Tracing the rise, fall, and alarming resurrection of the digital mafia behind the two largest spam pharmacies—and countless viruses, phishing, and spyware attacks—he delivers the first definitive narrative of the global spam problem and its threat to consumers everywhere.
Blending cutting-edge research, investigative reporting, and firsthand interviews, this terrifying true story reveals how we unwittingly invite these digital thieves into our lives every day. From unassuming computer programmers right next door to digital mobsters like "Cosma"—who unleashed a massive malware attack that has stolen thousands of Americans' logins and passwords—Krebs uncovers the shocking lengths to which these people will go to profit from our data and our wallets.
Not only are hundreds of thousands of Americans exposing themselves to fraud and dangerously toxic products from rogue online pharmacies, but even those who never open junk messages are at risk. As Krebs notes, spammers can—and do—hack into accounts through these emails, harvest personal information like usernames and passwords, and sell them on the digital black market. The fallout from this global epidemic doesn't just cost consumers and companies billions, it costs lives too.
Fast-paced and utterly gripping, Spam Nation ultimately proposes concrete solutions for protecting ourselves online and stemming this tidal wave of cybercrime—before it's too late.
"Krebs's talent for exposing the weaknesses in online security has earned him respect in the IT business and loathing among cybercriminals… His track record of scoops...has helped him become the rare blogger who supports himself on the strength of his reputation for hard-nosed reporting." —Bloomberg Businessweek
Brian Krebs is an award-winning journalist, founder of the highly acclaimed cybersecurity blog KrebsonSecurity.com, and author of the New York Times bestseller, Spam Nation. For 14 years, Krebs was a reporter for The Washington Post, where he authored the acclaimed Security Fix blog. He has appeared on 60 Minutes, CBS This Morning, CNN, NPR, Fox, ABC News, and in the Wall Street Journal, Forbes, USA Today, and more, and has been profiled in the New York Times and Bloomberg’s BusinessWeek.
"A fascinating and somewhat disheartening look why spam is so common...readers of Spam Nation will never look at the spam in their inbox the same way again." — USA Today
"In Spam Nation, journalist Brian Krebs guides readers through the intimidating and technical world of organized cybercrime...Future wars will be waged in part by talented hackers with bot armies at their backs. For now, we have Krebs as a guide, and—thankfully—email filters. " — The Washington Free Beacon
"The book is a strong chronicle of how and why this junk business succeeds..." — Federal Computer Week
"Krebs' guided tour of the cybercriminal underworld is a cautionary tale about menacing cultures of hackers, spammers and duplicitous digital network ‘cybercrooks...’ an eye-opening, immensely distressing exposé on the current state of organized cyberspammers. " — Kirkus Reviews
"Armed with reams of information sent to him by feuding hackers and cybercrooks, Krebs explores just how and why these spammers get away with so much...By exposing our digital weaknesses and following the money, he presents a fascinating and entertaining cautionary tale. Krebs’s work is timely, informative, and sadly relevant in our cyber-dependent age." — Publishers Weekly
"Inside story of the sophisticated world of spam and cyber attacks and the people and organizations behind them. It gets into the psychology and methods and relationships behind the people who send it, the few but enough who click and buy, and the rest who are unwittingly part of the system." — Medium
"Brian Krebs's blend of investigative reporting and cybersecurity expertise makes for an informative and entertaining read." — ZDNet
"Spam Nation does a great job of telling an important aspect of the story, and what small things you can do to make a large difference, such that you won't fall victim to these scammers. At just under 250 pages, Spam Nation is a quick read and an important one at that." — Slashdot
"Brian Krebs, a well-known security expert, dives deep into the history and culture of the underground world where spam gets made—and along the way touches on that community's participation in online criminal enterprises: identity theft, botnet creation, money laundering, data breaches, and much more." — Before It’s News
"Those wishing for a reliable tour of the shadowy world of criminal hacking and cyber thievery need look no further than Spam Nation, a new book by Brian Krebs." — Vending Times
"[A] potent new book…Intricate and superbly documented." — Boston Globe
"I know this book review is essentially a Brian Krebs love fest. Sorry, I can't help myself. As a security pro, it's my occupation to find flaws, but I can't find one in this book. At a time when courageous journalists around the world are under threat, investigative journalism of this quality and boldness deserves to be rewarded." — InfoWorld
"A riveting historical thriller about the Russian bad guys behind spam and malware attacks, how it grew, why so little was accomplished to stop it & ultimately, how of late the tide has been shifting. " — Newstips