Back in early December, 2021, I purchased a book titled This Is How They Tell Me the World Ends: The Cyberweapons Arms Race by Nicole Perlroth. I rate this book at the “this is solid gold, if you don’t pick this up and read it, you’re going to be at a disadvantage” level.
While I read the whole thing and valued all of it, there are two reasons why I loved this book.
The first is that Part III (yes, all of Part III) is amazing and takes you back to a world that explains the why behind many modern security techniques today. Part III is called The Spies and is just so, so good. Some of the ingenious hacks of the Soviet era will blow your mind. I found myself reading all three chapters in Part III in one sitting over the weekend.
“Why did Willie Sutton rob banks?” Gosler would repeatedly ask his bosses and underlings at the intel agencies. “Because that’s where the money is!”Page 88, This Is How They Tell Me the World Ends: The Cyberweapons Arms Race
The second is the writing in general. It’s good. You’re getting a ton of great information structured in a narrative that is both a page turner and immersive. I could really visualize exactly what was being described – there’s all sorts of narrative elements added for fit and polish. You’ll find tons of little quotes from people who were involved with all sorts of agencies, brokerages, intel groups, military forces, and country governments. Super digestible and a treat to read.
Hope you enjoy it, too!