Spying Spies and the Spies They Spied

Stealing information can be just as lucrative — and destructive — as stealing anything else. Our look at the history of data theft touches on some of the major (or just really interesting) crimes in history. The father of the American Industrial Revolution? A glorified data thief. That tea you’re drinking (let’s say just for the duration of this sentence, you are drinking tea)? That’s a stolen secret recipe, the theft of which involved a Scotsman dressed up in “traditional mandarin garb.”

Spies are all around us, and always have been. Is Dan Nosowitz’s interesting History of Data Theft itself some kind of spy? And could it have been not a Scotsman dressed up in traditional mandarin garb but two kids on each other’s shoulders dressed up as a Scotsman dressed up in traditional Mandarin garb!?