Starter episode: “What Did You Take?”
Begun through the early days of quarantine in March 2020, this affable present looks like eavesdropping on a dialog between two internet-savvy mates. One of many hosts, Ryan Broderick, used to co-host the beloved Buzzfeed podcast “Web Explorer,” and brings the identical inquisitive, informative vitality to this collection about on-line content material in all its types. Broderick’s rapport together with his co-host, the British journalist Luke Bailey, retains the tone gentle and accessible even when the subject material is complicated. Current episodes have centered on mainstream tech tales — the crypto crash, the Netflix bubble bursting — however others go down really bizarre rabbit holes, just like the mysterious world of Katie Couric CBD scams on Fb.
Starter episode: “The Facebookification of Netflix”
A vigilante hacker and a dogged reporter group as much as take down an enormous little one pornography web site. This extraordinary and horrifying true story, which is simply as gripping because the abstract suggests, is a coproduction from CBC Podcasts and the Norwegian newspaper Verdens Gang. Delving into the deepest recesses of the darkish net, “Searching Warhead” follows a monthslong investigation by Einar Stangvik, the hacker, and Hakon Hoydal, the journalist, that finally led to the downfall of a neighborhood politician. The present’s unflinching method makes for robust listening: Along with speaking to the investigators, the host, Daemon Fairless, interviews the web site’s unrepentant proprietor, Ben Faulkner, who’s at present serving a 35-year jail sentence.
Starter episode: “Hacker vs. Hacker”
In late 2014, the movie trade was roiled by a wildly embarrassing hack. After Sony Footage workers confirmed as much as work one morning to search out their computer systems unusable, reams of confidential firm information started leaking on-line, together with salaries, contracts and unflattering electronic mail exchanges amongst executives. In a weird twist, the hack turned out to be motivated by the approaching launch of a film named “The Interview,” (starring Seth Rogen and James Franco), which depicted a fictional plot to assassinate Kim Jong-un of North Korea. This wry, richly reported podcast from the BBC World Service chronicles each twist and switch of the saga and its implications far past Hollywood.
Starter episode: “Hacking Hollywood”
When this WBUR collection began, in 2017, it was a partnership with Reddit. Again then, the hosts, Ben Brock Johnson and Amory Sivertson, informed tales impressed particularly by the quixotic digital communities Reddit creates and the on a regular basis mysteries it spotlights. (One basic episode focuses on a Reddit thread a couple of man who came across an enormous, inexplicable pile of plates in rural Pennsylvania.) The partnership with Reddit has ended, and “Infinite Thread” has expanded to discover web tradition extra usually — final 12 months, it debuted a pleasant mini-series digging into the again tales behind numerous memes just like the rickroll. Although the tone is usually lighthearted, the present’s matters are as unpredictable and chaotic because the web itself.
Starter episode: “We Need Plates!”
Cybercrime has snowballed so quickly that the world has been caught off guard; final 12 months’s ransomware assault on a significant U.S. pipeline highlighted simply how susceptible a lot of our establishments are, to not point out our particular person information. “Hacking People” doesn’t draw back from that disturbing actuality, however it’s additionally by no means alarmist. As a substitute, it takes a lighthearted and calm method to what are, basically, true crime tales in regards to the web. The hosts, Dave Bittner and Joe Carrigan, are cybersecurity specialists who emphasize options as they unfurl tales of social engineering, phishing scams and on-line con artists of each stripe. Alarmed as chances are you’ll really feel by many episodes, you’ll depart with a greater sense of learn how to defend your self.