Start Episode: “What Did You Take?”
Started during the early days of quarantine in March 2020, this affable show feels like eavesdropping on a conversation between two internet-savvy friends. One of the hosts, Ryan Broderick, co-hosted the much-loved Buzzfeed podcast ‘Internet Explorer’, bringing the same curious, informational energy to this series about online content in all its forms. Broderick’s relationship with his co-host, British journalist Luke Bailey, keeps the tone light and accessible, even when the subject is complex. Recent episodes have focused on mainstream tech stories — the crypto crash, the Netflix bubble burst — but others go through really weird rabbit holes, like the mysterious world of Katie Couric CBD scam on Facebook.
Start Episode: “The Facebookification of Netflix”
A vigilante hacker and a persistent reporter team up to take down a massive child porn website. As gripping as the summary suggests, this extraordinary and horrifying true story is co-produced by CBC Podcasts and Norwegian newspaper Verdens Gang. “Hunting Warhead” delves into the depths of the dark web, following a months-long investigation by Einar Stangvik, the hacker, and Hakon Hoydal, the journalist, that ultimately led to the downfall of a local politician. The show’s unwavering approach makes for difficult listening: In addition to talking to the investigators, the host, Daemon Fairless, interviews the website’s unrepentant owner, Ben Faulkner, who is currently serving a 35-year sentence.
Start Episode: “Hacker vs. hacker”
In late 2014, the film industry was ravaged by a hugely embarrassing hack. After Sony Pictures employees showed up for work one morning to discover their computers were unusable, piles of confidential company data began leaking online, including salaries, contracts and unflattering email exchanges between executives. In a bizarre twist, the hack turned out to be motivated by the impending release of a movie called “The Interview” (starring Seth Rogen and James Franco), which depicted a fictional plot to kill North Korea’s Kim Jong-un. to kill. This wry, lavishly reported podcast from the BBC World Service chronicles every twist and turn of the saga and its implications far beyond Hollywood.
Start Episode: “Hollywood Hacking”
When this WBUR series started, in 2017, it was a collaboration with Reddit. At the time, the hosts, Ben Brock Johnson and Amory Sivertson, told stories specifically inspired by the quixotic virtual communities Reddit creates and the everyday mysteries it sheds light on. (A classic episode focuses on a Reddit thread about a man who stumbled upon a huge, inexplicable pile of signs in rural Pennsylvania.) Reddit’s partnership has ended, and “Endless Thread” has expanded to reflect Internet culture more broadly. to explore – last year, it debuted a delightful miniseries that digs into the backstories behind various memes like the rickroll. While the tone is generally light-hearted, the show’s subjects are just as unpredictable and chaotic as the internet itself.
Start Episode: “We Want Plates!”
Cybercrime has snowballed so quickly that the world has been taken by surprise; Last year’s ransomware attack on a major US pipeline highlighted how vulnerable many of our institutions are, not to mention our individual data. “Hacking Humans” doesn’t shy away from that disturbing reality, but it’s never alarming either. Instead, it takes a light-hearted and calm approach to what is essentially true crime stories on the Internet. The hosts, Dave Bittner and Joe Carrigan, are cybersecurity experts who emphasize solutions while unraveling stories of social engineering, phishing scams, and online scammers of all kinds. As alarmed as you are by many episodes, you’ll leave with a better idea of how to protect yourself.