On a sad note, the world bids farewell to Kevin Mitnick, once known as the most wanted computer criminal in US history, who passed away in Las Vegas at 59.
Kevin Mitnick Cause of Death
Kevin Mitnick’s death was attributed to a 14-month battle with pancreatic cancer, during which he received care at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Centre. Stu Sjouwerman, CEO of the security training company KnowBe4, where Mitnick served as Chief Hacking Officer, disclosed the cause of death.
Who was Kevin Mitnick?
Born on August 6, 1963, in Van Nuys, Los Angeles, Kevin David Mitnick’s early life was marked by his parents’ divorce when he was just three years old. Raised by his mother, who worked as a waitress, Mitnick’s journey into technology began as a student tinkerer. He rose to infamy as the nation’s prototypical computer hacker during the 1990s, a time of widespread internet use.
Later in his career, Mitnick became an ethical hacking specialist, IT security consultant, author, and sought-after public speaker. He founded his own consulting business, Mitnick Security Consulting. He co-wrote several best-selling books, including “The Art of Deception,” “The Art of Intrusion,” “Ghost in the Wires,” and “The Art of Invisibility,” which were translated into numerous languages.
Kevin Mitnick’s Legacy
Mitnick became a prominent figure in the cybersecurity industry, contributing his expertise to advise American lawmakers and multinational corporations. He appeared on various news channels and programs, sharing insights on security-related topics. Despite his past as a hacker, he managed to turn his knowledge into a force for good, utilizing it to protect businesses and individuals from cyber threats.
Arrest, Conviction, and Accusations
In the past, Kevin Mitnick faced accusations of stealing software, accessing credit card numbers, and causing millions of dollars of damage to corporate computer operations. He was eventually caught and served a five-year prison sentence. Despite the severity of his actions, there was no evidence that he financially benefited from his hacking activities.
Mitnick later described his hacking as a quest for knowledge, an intellectual challenge, and escapism. His actions were not driven by financial motives, according to both him and the CEO of a cybersecurity company.
Kevin Mitnick’s life journey showcases the complex and often misunderstood world of hacking, from its dark origins to its potential for positive impact in cybersecurity. As the cybersecurity community mourns his loss, his legacy as a pioneering figure in the field will continue to inspire and educate future generations.