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An axe stuck in a computer rack.

Adam got a job doing IT work at a learning academy. He liked it and was happy there and feeling part of the team. But a strange series of events took him in another direction, that definitely didn’t make him happy.


Support for this show comes from Axonius. Securing assets — whether managed, unmanaged, ephemeral, or in the cloud — is a tricky task. The Axonius Cybersecurity Asset Management Platform correlates asset data from existing solutions to provide an always up-to-date inventory, uncover gaps, and automate action. Axonius gives IT and security teams the confidence to control complexity by mitigating threats, navigating risk, decreasing incidents, and informing business-level strategy — all while eliminating manual, repetitive tasks. Visit axonius.com/darknet to learn more and try it free.

Support for this podcast comes from Cybereason. Cybereason reverses the attacker’s advantage and puts the power back in the defender’s hands. End cyber attacks. From endpoints to everywhere. Learn more at Cybereason.com/darknet.

Support for this show comes from Varonis. Do you wonder what your company’s ransomware blast radius is? Varonis does a free cyber resilience assessment that tells you how many important files a compromised user could steal, whether anything would beep if they did, and a whole lot more. They actually do all the work – show you where your data is too open, if anyone is using it, and what you can lock down before attackers get inside. They also can detect behavior that looks like ransomware and stop it automatically. To learn more visit www.varonis.com/darknet.

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Darknet Diaries is created by Jack Rhysider.

Episode artwork by odibagas.

Audio cleanup by Proximity Sound.

Theme music created by Breakmaster Cylinder. Theme song available for listen and download at bandcamp. Or listen to it on Spotify.


Recording equipment used this episode was the Shure SM7B, Zoom Podtrak P4, Sony MDR7506 headphones, and Hindenburg audio editor.



JACK: One time when I was in middle school, my mom bought some cookies at the store and put them in the cupboard. After school one day, I saw the box and it wasn’t opened yet. I opened it up and took two cookies. They were so good, so I went back and got two more. I was still hungry, so I went and got four more and ate them, too. At this point, I looked and over half the box was gone. I thought oh no, I’m gonna be in trouble for eating over half a box of cookies. I didn’t like getting in trouble, [MUSIC] so I stood there and looked at the box and tried thinking what I could do. But there was no way to undo it, so my twelve-year-old self came up with the idea that maybe if the whole box is completely gone, box and all, then maybe my mom will just forget she bought it altogether. So, I took the whole box out of the cupboard, covered the area with some other food so it didn’t look like anything was missing, and I ate them all. Then I threw the empty box away in the outside trash bin and covered it up with some more trash. You know what? It worked. She didn’t notice. At least, she never mentioned to me anything about the cookies, and I didn’t get in any trouble. I think she really did forget that she bought them, and so, my plan worked. I tell you this story because in this episode, you’ll hear a similar story, but one with much higher stakes, and it doesn’t end so well.

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