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I read Andy Greenberg's "This Machine Kills Secrets" a few weeks ago and I really loved it.  Here's a brief review that I've also posted to Amazon:

Could the Pentagon Papers have been leaked without a photocopier? Though now seen as the most famous leak in U.S. history, and a catalyst for the end of the Vietnam war, the Pentagon Papers did not happen overnight. Far from it, it took Daniel Ellsberg close to a year of tedious nighttime photocopying and daytime pruning (Ellsberg had to remove an Top Secret markings from his documents in order to recopy them for the press at a commercial copy-shop) before he finished the eight foot stack of documents. Today a CD-burner can write fifty times Ellsberg's document haul in minutes.

That's what Bradley Manning is accused using to pull of the biggest leak since Ellsberg -- hundreds of thousands of classified documents on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and a quarter of a million state department cables, all of which eventually ended up in the hands of Wikileaks.

Ellsberg's colleagues at RAND suspected him immediately. Manning might never have been found out, had he not confessed his crime to a hacker named Adrian Lamo, who quickly turned him in.

Too much has been written about Wikileaks and, particularly, the activists and hackers who have sustained and defended it. So it's a welcome relief to come across a book like Andy Greenberg's "This Machine Kills Secrets," which goes beyond the obvious and sketches out the rich cultural and technical history that ultimately made Wikileaks possible.

Greenberg is that rare writer who can breathe life and color into a complex story about technology without embarrassing himself to the geeks. And he shows off his skills in "This Machine Kills Secrets" with wonderful profiles of people like the godfather of the Cypherpunks Tim May, Wilikeaks Julian Assange, and (my favorite) the anarchic shit-disturber John Young, whose Cryptome.org led the way for Wikileaks.

The book is smart and great fun to read.

"This Machine Kills Secrets" describes the decades-long quest for a sort of Internet-age Philosopher's Stone: a set of technologies that can grant someone true anonymity. If someone can be truly anonymous on the Internet -- and that is technically possible now -- then we are entering a radical new era of global free speech... and leaking.

That last point is where Greenberg's is at his weakest. Are we really entering a new age, or is this all, as Evgeny Morozov pointed out in his  New York Times review of the book, (http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/14/books/review/this-machine-kills-secrets-by-andy-greenberg.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0 ) merely a blip. Paralyzed by internecine rivalries and an international criminal prosecution, Wikileaks has stalled. And nothing has stepped in to fill its shoes. You get the sense that Greenberg embarked on the project hoping for the start of a revolution that never happened.

But I disagree with Morozov's assessment that the momentum has now turned against the leakers. True, it takes a certain type of person to pull off a Cablegate -- someone with technical sophistication of a Bradley Manning -- but systems for controlling the dissemination of documents are only good enough to deter the technically naive. Lock them down too much, and they become unusable. Security will always be a series of trade-offs and new technologies will continue to shift this balance for years to come. But if you want to get a clear picture of where we are today, read this book.
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