Whether or not you know anything about computer security, viruses, trojan horses, etc… the book Worm – The First Digital World War is a great book and very informative. It is a semi-fictional piece, but many of the ideas in the book could come to reality soon. It also raises a bunch of questions like is this stuff going on right now and how involved are our governments and secret agencies (NSA and CIA amongst others). It really opens one’s mind to what may really be going on or occuring between China and the U.S.
The Author writes this novel in such a way that it is easy for a novice to pick it up and understand what is going on, but at the same time it keeps IT experts grossly immersed. You can actually learn a lot from this book and it’s kind of like an introduction to what could be happening or starting.
According to Mark Bowden the internet is only in its infancy. That means there is a lot of room for him to write sequels off Worm. I think it would be an exciting movie also (much more exciting then The Social Network, the story of Mark Zuckerberg). The book and its story grip you right from page 1 (actually even before that if you read the cover jackets first like I do).
I first looked at the hardcover book at an airport book shop in the Charlotte Douglas International Airport prior to a flight to Chicago for a convention. It intrigued me enough to look it up online on my iphone. I quickly found that I could get the kindle version (my wife has a Kindle) for like $7. Besides we already have enough books around the house so I prefer online digital books like the Kindle now.
The book Worm is a magnificent (albeit semi-fictional) read on what could potentially happen. With the internet the way it is today and the fact that there are so many users and even companies that are not really that well protected (in some cases as the book highlights there is no such thing as 100% protection unless one were to take themselves completely off the internet).
We buy antivirus programs and firewall security and that is a good start, but there is so much more out there. Hidden glitches that operating system manufacturers are constantly working to plug and hackers are looking to exploit. Sometimes just running a few ports open at the same time for wireless printers and such can put you at risk. Sometimes even the operating system manufacturers like Microsoft come up against loopholes that are not easily plugged and they don’t want the negative publicity so they just don’t tell you about it.
This leaves your computer and personal information vulnerable. Then you have to wonder why countries like China, Iran and even the soviet Union (Russia) are hiring computer experts and even recent college graduates with ever increasing salaries – they are putting them on the offensive (or defensive as is primarily the case of the NSA and CIA in America) in this new online, digital battle.
No country wants to be left behind in this new frontier. The stakes are massive and this book gives you a little taste of this and an insight into what may really be going on around us. Besides, if you really think about it we are all at war right now by the premises of this book. This stuff really is going on right now whether you want to believe it or not! This is an absolutely must read book. Highly entertaining and Mark Bowden is just a great author. You will like Worm – The First Digital World War book – I guarantee it!