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Cyber Spying: Tracking Your Family's (Sometimes) Secret Online Lives [Paperback]

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Item Number 258650  
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Item description for Cyber Spying: Tracking Your Family's (Sometimes) Secret Online Lives by Ted Fair...

Have you ever wondered about that friend your spouse e-mails, or who they spend hours chatting online with? Are you curious about what your children are doing online, who they meet, and what they talk about? Do you worry about them finding drugs and other illegal items online, and wonder what they look at? This book offers the opportunity for you to learn how to monitor and analyze your family's online behavior.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   464
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.06" Width: 7.01" Height: 1.18"
Weight:   1.63 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Apr 12, 2005
Publisher   Syngress
ISBN  1931836418  
ISBN13  9781931836418  

Availability  115 units.
Availability accurate as of Oct 22, 2016 05:33.
Usually ships within one to two business days from La Vergne, TN.
Orders shipping to an address other than a confirmed Credit Card / Paypal Billing address may incur and additional processing delay.

More About Ted Fair

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Fair is deputy director of the Advanced Technology Research Center at The Sytex Group, Inc. Ted holds a degree from James Madison University and a Master of Science degree in Telecommunications from The George Washington University.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Children
2Books > Subjects > Computers & Internet > Digital Business & Culture > Culture
3Books > Subjects > Computers & Internet > Digital Business & Culture > Privacy
4Books > Subjects > Computers & Internet > General
5Books > Subjects > Computers & Internet > Home & Office > Internet
6Books > Subjects > Computers & Internet > Networking > Networks, Protocols & API's > General
7Books > Subjects > Computers & Internet > Networking > Networks, Protocols & API's > Network Security

Reviews - What do customers think about Cyber Spying: Tracking Your Family's (Sometimes) Secret Online Lives?

not bad.. not bad at all  Dec 3, 2007
I read these kinds of books all the time. If your a noob, I would highly recommend this book*. You will learn the fundamentals of the trade. Other books i would recommend also are "Spies among us" , "Secrets and Lies (digital security in a networked world), tcp/ip for dummies, linux/unix for dummies, a good CompTia A+ book, and a Comptia N+ book and you'll be just about ready for a real cyber cop job. ~ happy trails. *read this one first.
A bit creepy, but not the best coverage of the subject  Jan 2, 2007
I have to admit, in the first chapter of "Cyber Spying" I found myself creeped out. But, unlike people who have had to deal with this sort of thing, I've never had to deal with a cheating spouse or, worse, someone preying on my kids. With that in mind, I forged ahead to have a look at Fair et al's book. I have to say that what I found wasn't great, but did a decent job.

Chapter 1, the creepy one, sets out the whole "Why Spy?" topic with anecdotes and some (at times) questionable stats. The three main authors are all ex-intelligence service and so they tend to have a lot of CIA-ish anecdotes. All in all, chapter 1 feels more like hype and scare than much of anything (the cheating spouse story and stats).

Chapter 2 covers spying basic, mainly principles that they'll be using throughout the rest of the book. Not much technical material here, and lots about the Robert Hanssen case.

Chapters 3 and 4 cover computer and network basics. I think they're included for completeness' sake, but sadly they don't really outline the audience very well (because you'll wind up installing hardware and very technical software in the coming chapters).

Chapter 5 covers the basics of "Taking control", namely how to navigate around your Windows PC. While there's a convoluted way to get to the Windows Explorer to browse files, there's a good list of various utilities (nice clarity here), and then a short Wireshark intro. This is what I mean about the varying levels of the intended audience: if they have to be told what a modem port looks like, chances are they wont get regedit and Wireshark all that much.

Chapter 6 covers "Spying on the PC" and all sorts of convoluted ways to recover passwords, accounts, etc (before they get to various tools to assist you). This convoluted approach sadly makes the utility of this chapter very low.

Chapters 7, 8 and 9 cover web browsing, email and IM spying, respectively. Sadly, many of the techniques given are complex and could be better done with a few pieces of (sometimes free) software. Never mind that if you actually try and alter your kid's computer, they'll probably figure it out, and the book's own excerpt about how a kid cleans up his own computer would defeat many of these methods.

Chapter 10 covers advanced techniques and does so fairly well. No major issues to note here. Chapter 11 covers how you can detect being spied on (ie by your spouse or parent) and thwart such measures.

"Cyber Spying" is unique in its topic and only executes it modestly well. The coverage itself is OK, but the methods are convoluted and better tools and techniques could have been used. This book is NOT for enterprise managers who want to learn how to monitor their employees, there are far better ways to do that. In short, this book is only OK.
Interesting and informative  Jul 23, 2006
I put off reading Cyber Spying for over a year. I guess it was a combination of too many computer security books, not enough time, and the fact that I tend not to read books that appear to be geared toward the mainstream home user. But, based on some recent comments by someone in my office and the fact that one of the authors is now a colleague of mine, I decided to see what I've been missing.

The book is very well-written and interesting. It presents a good overview of techniques and available tools that can be used for various types of data collection. Although space prevents an in-depth review of each tool, the book provides enough information to get started. Other books or the Internet are available for readers who truly want to get more information on the tools.

Throughout the book, the authors go to great length to warn the reader of the possible consequences of spying on your family and getting caught. The authors start by exposing data from user activities that is collected by Microsoft Windows, web browsers, and other applications; such as web sites visited, images viewed, e-mails written, applications launched, etc, that might reveal illicit behavior. I found this to be informative and fun, as I followed along on my own machine. I already knew that such data was collected (mostly), but somehow it still gave me pause as I (re)realized how vulnerable we all are to having our personal privacy violated; if not from our family members, from strangers who might install spyware on our machines to collect such information. In a sense, the book is also a primer on identity theft (both how to steal someone's identity and how to prevent yours from being stolen).

The authors then turn toward more active (and covert) data collection techniques using keyloggers, network sniffers, and remote control software. In my opinion, there is a difference between looking at your spouse's or children's browser's web page history or the Windows registry; information which is readily available, and covertly monitoring their activities using special purpose software or hardware, such as keyloggers and network sniffers. For me, the circumstances would have to be pretty dire, and I would have to be very certain that "bad things are happening" before I would undertake those types of monitoring activities. As another reviewer indicated, you might prevent your kids from an on-line predictor. But, equally or more likely, you will drive them to more sophisticated means to hide their activities (both on-line and off-line). I would caution the reader not take the authors warnings lightly. Remember, the person you're spying on may not take kindly to your methods, and could very well turn the tables on you and retaliate, regardless of whether they are innocent or guilty. The spying may literally reveal more about the spy than the spy's intended target. Even if you don't have anything to hide yourself (which is highly doubtful) you might have the ultimate "Insider Threat" in the making. You are not the only one who can use such tools to collect information.

At the same time that the book evoked these emotions through its controversial subject matter, it is also what makes the book interesting, relevant, and important. As someone in the computer security field, I didn't learn so much about cyber spying techniques as I did about myself and how I might react to a family member spying on me, especially if I found they were using some of the advanced tactics mentioned in the book. My advice is to read the book; learn from it; and (if you must), proceed with caution. And most importantly... don't get caught.

Excellent and Interesting  Feb 8, 2006
Although a well detailed book, laying out the valid reasons why to spy
(especially on family members), Cyber Spying spends too much time on the
problems and not enough on the solutions. This book is great for those less
familiar with computer and network basics. Those with more experience in
computers will get more out of the chapters that address psychology and
software for spying. Also, the chapters on advanced techniques and other
devices that you can spy on are helpful and informative. The
book provides a good overview of the methods and types of software
available, but falls short in identifying software that "does it all." I
was disappointed by the lack of any specific software mentioned that can
accomplish all the types of spying mentioned (e.g., keystroke and website
logging, email and chat records, and cookie and cache information). The
bonus of 4 free downloadable e-books is a valuable resource for expanding
your knowledge beyond the book. Cyber Spying shows the vulnerability of most
PCs; it's not as much a threat against the Mac. Like all O'Reilly books,
it's a great reference book, but don't let it fall into the hands of the
"enemy" lest they learn your secrets.
very helpful for parents  Jul 7, 2005
Cyber Spying Tracking Your Family's (Sometimes) Secret Online Lives is great, especially for parents. This is since parents haven't a clue what their kids are doing online.

This book will help parents know if their kids are up to good or no good.

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