The Bookshelf

Beyond Fear, by Bruce Schneier

Written similar to the way he talks in that it jumps around and covers a wide breadth of topics. But every page has nuggets of gold. His factor analysis for security problems is still the best starting point.

Body of Secrets, James Bamford

The birth of the NSA. Anyone interested in understanding government surveillance will enjoy this book. It’s also just very well written.


The Broken Window, Jeffrey Deaver (fiction)

When your friends ask what you do, hand them this book and say, “It’s all in here.” Murder and identify theft- a fun read.

Code 2.0, by Lawrence Lessig

It’s Lawrence! What more reason do you need to read it?

Crowds and Power, by Elias Canetti

An important pillar to start to understand social media.

Cryptography- A very short introduction, by Fred Piper and Shawn Murphy

For those of us who are not math whizzes.

The Cuckoo’s Egg, by Cliff Stoll

It’s the mid eighties and recycled astronomer, Cliff Stoll, discovers a hacker in the Berkeley computer lab after being asked to investigate a seventy-five cent accounting error. No one is interested despite the hacker using the lab’s network to break into military computers. Cliff stays on the trail, initially more out of curiosity, but eventually due to the realization that computer security is non-existent on the Internet’s predecessor. Drugs, the KGB, the US military, college drop-outs, Berkeley politics and a dozen TLA agencies make up a color cast of characters. Read why the more computer security changes, the more users stay the same.

European Data Protection Law, by Christopher Kuner

It’s the EU data protection bible.

The Net Delusion: The Dark Side of Internet Freedom, by Evgeny Morozov

A sobering and eye-opening read. Given all the “feel good vibes” Internet evangelists dominate the airwaves and blogesphere with, an alternative and arguably more realistic view of recent history (e.g., the Green Revolution in Iran) and the roll of technology, is an important read. From the Economist:

With chapter titles and headings such as “Why the KGB wants you to join Facebook” and “Why Kierkegaard Hates Slacktivism” it is clear that Mr Morozov is enjoying himself (indeed, there may be a few more bad jokes than is strictly necessary). But the resulting book is not just unfailingly readable: it is also a provocative, enlightening and welcome riposte to the cyber-utopian worldview.

Security Engineering, by Ross Anderson

No other book will teach you as much about the field of security engineering.

The Shadow Factory, by James Bamford

The NSA post 9/11. Agree or disagree, it gives a basic set of facts for which we can discuss government surveillance in society.

Understanding Privacy, by Daniel Solove

Required reading for any privacy practitioner.



Why Things Bite Back, Edward Tenner

The road to hell is paved with technology.

You are Not a Gadget, by Jaron Lanier

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