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Tsutomu Shimomura: Noted for Capture of Kevin Mitnick

Tsutomu Shimomura: Noted for Capture of Kevin Mitnick

 By Charles Joseph | Cybersecurity Researcher
 Published on July 30th, 2023
This post was updated on November 25th, 2023

Tsutomu Shimomura is a notable computer security expert and physicist from Japan. He gained significant attention in the 1990s for his role in apprehending infamous hacker Kevin Mitnick. His work often combines his knowledge of cybersecurity and physical sciences. In addition to being known for his expertise in computer security, Shimomura has also co-authored books and research papers, contributing valuable insights to the field of cyber security. He’s especially recognized for his work on computer intrusion detection.

1. Tsutomu Shimomura’s Role in Capturing Kevin Mitnick

In the mid-1990s, Tsutomu Shimomura played a pivotal role in the capture of notorious hacker Kevin Mitnick. Mitnick, once featured on the FBI’s Most Wanted list, hacked into Shimomura’s personal computer. Not one to let this intrusion go unanswered, Shimomura began a relentless pursuit to track down Mitnick.

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Shimomura managed to trace Mitnick’s actions and, with his detailed findings, aided the FBI in Mitnick’s capture in 1995. This not only brought him recognition in his field, but also cemented Shimomura’s reputation as a formidable figure in the world of cybersecurity. His masterful work in Mitnick’s capture has been well documented in various forms, and remains one of his notable achievements to date.

2. His Contributions to the Field of Cybersecurity

Tsutomu Shimomura has made significant contributions to the field of cybersecurity. He has developed various technologies and techniques to counter cyber threats, strengthening the security landscape. Shimomura’s work often combines his expertise in physical sciences with his knowledge of computer systems, providing a unique perspective to the cybersecurity world.

Aside from his practical work, Shimomura also made contributions to cybersecurity theory and knowledge. He has offered insight into computer intrusion detection and shared strategies for effectively dealing with security breaches. His methodologies are considered influential and are used by many in the field.

3. His works as an Author and Researcher

Besides his practical cybersecurity work, Tsutomu Shimomura has also made his mark as an author and researcher. He co-authored the book “Takedown: The Pursuit and Capture of Kevin Mitnick, America’s Most Wanted Computer Outlaw – By the Man Who Did It” with journalist John Markoff. The book offers a detailed account of his pursuit and eventual capture of Kevin Mitnick, providing a unique insight into one of the most famous cases in cybersecurity history.

In addition to his book, Shimomura has written various research papers and articles. His writings cover a broad range of topics within cybersecurity, offering his perspectives and theoretical contributions to the field. This work establishes him not only as a prominent figure in digital security, but also as a leading thinker in the world of cybersecurity.


Tsutomu Shimomura’s contributions to cybersecurity, notably his role in capturing hacker Kevin Mitnick and his theoretical work, have served to advance the field significantly. Whether through gripping real-life tales of digital detective work or through diligent research and writing, Shimomura has provided valuable insights into how we understand and confront the ever-evolving challenges in the realm of cybersecurity.

Key Takeaways

  • Tsutomu Shimomura is a highly revered Japanese computer security expert and physicist.
  • He played a crucial role in arresting infamous hacker Kevin Mitnick in the 1990s.
  • Shimomura has made significant contributions to cybersecurity, both in practical and theoretical fields.
  • Close to his practical work, he has co-authored books and written diverse research papers, notably “Takedown: The Pursuit and Capture of Kevin Mitnick, America’s Most Wanted Computer Outlaw – By the Man Who Did It.”
  • His multi-dimensional contributions to cybersecurity have marked him as a leading thinker and expert in this field.

Related Questions

1. What technology or approach is Tsutomu Shimomura best known for?

He is best known for his role in the apprehension of Kevin Mitnick. Using his own computer system, he followed Mitnick’s digital trail, leading to his capture.

2. Has Tsutomu Shimomura written any books?

Yes, Tsutomu Shimomura co-authored the book “Takedown” with journalist John Markoff, which provides a detailed account of the pursuit and capture of Kevin Mitnick.

3. What kind of research has Tsutomu Shimomura done?

Shimomura has done extensive research in the field of cybersecurity. He has written research papers and articles on a broad range of topics, contributing to both practical and theoretical cybersecurity fields.

4. How has Tsutomu Shimomura’s background in physical sciences influenced his cybersecurity work?

Shimomura’s background in physical sciences gives him a unique perspective in cybersecurity. It allows him to apply principles from physical sciences to computer systems, enhancing his approaches to tackling cyber threats.

5. How pivotal was the capture of Kevin Mitnick in terms of advancing Tsutomu Shimomura’s career?

The capture of Kevin Mitnick significantly enhanced Shimomura’s reputation in the field of cybersecurity. His unique approach and success in this case identified him as a formidable force in the field, making it a defining breakthrough in his career.

"Amateurs hack systems, professionals hack people."
-- Bruce Schneier, a renown computer security professional
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