Whaling for Beginners

Book One - Breach

Whaling for Beginners Book 1 Cover ImageHackers are hunting ‘whales’ in the boardroom. They attack, steal and ruin reputations. Are you the whale they’re looking for? Could you stop them?

Board level executives are known as ‘whales’ amongst hackers. That’s because they’re the big fish who hold the keys to the really big prizes: money, intellectual property and commercially sensitive information. Jim Baines, CEO of a major US packaging company, didn’t know he was a ‘whale’ until someone hacked his email and got into the heart of his company.

"Whaling for Beginners" follows Jim’s journey as he realizes just how close to home cyber-attacks can strike and how broad the hackers’ ambitions are. As his company’s very survival hangs in the balance, it emerges that the ultimate target of the whaling attack is the CFO of his biggest client – and one of his oldest friends.

Out of nowhere, hard-won reputations, hundreds of jobs and millions of dollars are all suddenly at risk.

"Whaling for Beginners" is not only a wake-up call for leading executives everywhere, it is a gripping and fascinating read in its own right.

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Book Two - Reputations

Whaling for Beginners Book 2 Cover ImageHackers don’t just steal information and money - they destroy reputations too. In a few keystrokes long shadows can fall across careers and organizations. Do you know how vulnerable you are? How would you respond?

In Book One we learned how Jim Baines, CEO of a major US packaging company, made a simple mistake and discovered that he was a ‘whale’ - a high value target for hackers looking to profit from the corporate chaos they can cause.

It turned out that he was just bait for even bigger prizes - including his old friend, Hannah Simmons, CFO of a huge multinational. Now, with Hannah’s career in meltdown, Jim facing the loss of the business it took him years to build and media speculation growing, an investigative journalist closes in on them, sensing the biggest exclusive of her career.

Meanwhile in London, a brilliant young hacker prepares to deepen the attack. But who is he working for and what is their ultimate objective?

It’s a nightmare that’s becoming all too common in boardrooms around the world.

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“I would recommend ‘Whaling for Beginners’ as essential reading for all board directors. As a Senior Independent NED and Deputy Chairman I know how important it is for business leaders to understand that they’re not immune and that they understand how to respond effectively in a crisis. I have sent copies of the book to all my fellow directors on five different boards."

Ian Davies, Deputy Chairman of BMT Group and Senior Independent Director at the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) and Harvey Nash.

“Knowing my background in cyber security and IT risk, I was recently given ‘Whaling for Beginners’ by a close friend... In a world of cyber techno jargon often presented without relevant context to board members and senior management, the story line is not only plausible but actually fun to follow, helping the reader realize in a very relatable way that none of us are immune to being directly targeted by a cyber-attack... If you’re a board director or executive decision maker, I would encourage you to have a look."

Jan Babiak

Purchase the book bundle

Download the first chapter of the "Whaling for Beginners" books

Whaling for Beginners - Chapter One - Book One (PDF, 244KB)
Whaling for Beginners - Chapter One - Book One (audio book) (MP3, 31MB)

Whaling for Beginners - Chapter One - Book Two (PDF, 4.87MB)

Watch an interview with Jim Baines

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