Friday, August 19, 2011

Deception, Crime, Hacking - My Influences

This is the kind of story that I love to hear. I used to watch shows about people like this on the crime networks as a teen. I was fascinated by some of the thieves. It's not that I wanted to get away with a crime...well, maybe a little, but it was the deception involved. I enjoyed the thought process.

I also love the character that it creates. This guy got sent to solitary confinement because they believed that he was able to break into the phone lines while in prison and whisper the launch codes. I love these impossible myths and legends that "normal" people can create.

A story that always stuck with me was one of a house burglar. He would purposefully choose houses that had a large dog knowing that they wouldn't have a motion activated alarm system, because the dog would constantly be setting it off. He would then break in through a side door by taking out a panel. He was able to stay calm enough that the dogs didn't see him as a threat. He only stole silver that was in a cabinet and would not take any other valuables. He then waited until he got outside to check if the silver was real or not. Anything that was imitation would be left in the bushes. This became his calling card. He reassembled the paneling on the door and no one would even notice they were robbed for days usually as silver is not often used on a daily basis. He then would drive down the freeway and throw out the clothes he wore bit by bit every few miles.

I think the part that struck me the most as I originally watched that episode from my old home as a young teenager was that when the guy eventually got caught (for something else entirely) he was able to negotiate a lighter sentencing if he told the police his secrets. He, just like the guy in this video and the guy that inspired the movie Catch Me if You Can, all worked with the police force or other companies to help protect them from their own techniques.

I'm attracted to things that have layers of thought and I've always loved the concept of using art/illusion to show reality. I think the other thing that I enjoy about these stories is that no one is really hurt. It's like if you've ever seen a bicycle with no chain outside of a store and you just want to move it around the corner in order to scare the kid, but not actually steal his bike!

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