“Is it safe?”
This question is asked over and over in the 1976 suspense-thriller film Marathon Man staring Dustin Hoffman and Laurence Olivier. In this intense scene, Babe is tortured by Szell in a effort to discover if it’s safe for him to recover his diamonds. Unfortunately for Babe, he doesn’t know the answer.
Thanks to the book Hacked Again by Scott N. Schober we know the answer to this question as it relates to our own Cyber Security… It is absolutely, Not Safe!
Scott’s story is compelling and disturbing. If a conscientious and tech savvy individual like Scott can be hacked multiple times, what hope does the average person have to not be hacked over and over relentlessly. Written in a casual, comfortable, and largely nontechnical tone, Scott shares a story that most would fear to tell because of the obvious potential of stigma and/or shame. Not only does he reveal the details of his hacks, he also shares his hard learned lessons and some great advice.
As an IT professional with decades of experience, I’m not completely surprised by his story. However, for readers with less knowledge about email, social media, and the internet in general; this book provides an approachable treasure trove of useful information. Yes, the examples and statistics are a bit frightening, but the lessons if heeded will significantly reduce your personal risk of becoming the victim of a hacker.
Scott shows a lot of humility in how he tells his story. First in how it affected him personally and then how it changed his business. He describes how he was initially concerned about putting his story out there and how he quickly realized that the positive benefits to his company and the community outweighed his concerns. You don’t have to be an Information Technology professional for this book to provide value to your personal and professional life. Yes, there’s a lot of really great advice on cyber security but there’s another story woven throughout the book. Scott’s tenacious response to the hacks against his own interests and then the hacks against others paved the way for him to become a sought after expert on the subject. A result that has obviously benefited him and his business.
So, I think there’s a moral here that we can all learn from… When confronted with adversity, what defines us is not that single moment of pain but how we respond in the hours and days thereafter.