20 Incredibly Resourceful Ethical Hacking Books for Beginners

There’s a thing called “ethical hacking”, which is a white hat technique adopted by companies and individuals to help identify all potential threats on a computer and network.

Ethical hackers are dedicated to finding and fixing vulnerabilities in websites dealing in apparels, highly confidential or archived scholarly assignments, government/corporate paperwork and the likes. 

However, unless you are aware of the key concept of ethical hacking and every other aspect associated with the technique, you won’t be able to fix a bug or run a code successfully in your network. 

As they say, a book is the best gift you can have, try reading these twenty resourceful books on ethical hacking, specially drafted and designed for beginners. 

Here you go! 

Best Ethical Hacking Books for Beginners

1) Hacking: The Art of Exploitation


Written by Jon Erickson, the book on ethical hacking gives you a comprehensive introduction to the term. Apart from that, the book explains the technical aspects of hacking which include stack overflows, the fundamentals of heap-based overflows, string exploits, and the likes.

Pages: 488
Price: $27.11

2) Hash Crack: Password Cracking Manual

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This is yet another useful read for beginners who wish to learn how to crack tricky password combinations.  The content of this book offers a nice compilation of advanced and basic techniques for penetration testers and network security professionals. 

Pages: 149
Price: $19.00 

3) The Web Application Hacker’s Handbook

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Authored by Dafydd Stuttard and Marcus Pinto, the book teaches its readers how to attack and defend different types of web applications.

In addition to it, the book outlines the different aspects of the latest technologies advantage that are designed in order to defend web applications from external attacks. 

Pages: 722 pages
Price: $56.37

4) Gary Hat Hacking: The Ethical Hacker’s Handbook 

Gary Hat Hacking: The Ethical Hacker’s Handbook

Written by Shon Harris, Chris Eagle and Allen Harper, the book mentions all important laws of ethical hacking. Apart from that, the compilation outlines and talks about some of the highly technical topics like fingerprinting, network scanning, shellcode writing and vulnerability exploitation. 

Pages: 434
Price: $29.94 

5) RTFM: Red Team Field Manual 

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This book by Ben Clark is said to be one informative composition that contains explicit information on the fundamentals of command scripts, application software, operating systems, and a variety of devices that are required in order to build a career in ethical hacking. 

Pages: 96 pages
Price: $10.00 

6) Network Security Assessment: 2nd Edition 

Authored by Chris McNab, this book on ethical hacking for beginners provides you with the tips and tricks you would need to establish a stable career in the domain of ethical hacking.

From outlining the penetration testing model to sharing tips on how to secure commercial, government, and military networks; the complication offers a comprehensive insight. 

Pages: 400 pages
Price: $10.58 

7) The Basics of Hacking and Penetration Testing 

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This book, written by Patrick Engebretson provides its readers with the steps they would need to take in order to perform a complete penetration test and successful hacking without any prior experience.

This book will help you to learn how to utilize and interpret the results of hacking by using modern-day tools like DNS interrogation, Nmap, the Social-Engineer Toolkit, Kali Linux, and more. 

Pages: 159 pages
Price: $24.36 

8) The Browser Hacker’s Handbook 

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Written by Wade Alcorn, Christian Frichot, and Micheal Orru, The Browser Hacker’s Handbook gives a practical understanding of ethical hacking. If you are looking for a practical tutorial to gain hands-on experience in hacking, then this book is for you. 

Pages: 648
Price: $60.44 

9) Violent Python 

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This book by TJ O’Connor shows you how to move from a theoretical analysis of offensive computing concepts to practical implementation of ethical hacking strategies.

If you need a book that would provide you with a theoretical and practical understanding of the different fundamentals of ethical hacking, then this book is for you. 

Pages: 288
Price: $29.79

10) Blue Team Handbook: Incident Response Edition 

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Written by Don Murdoch, the Blue Team Handbook Incident Response Edition is yet another reference guidebook for the young and inexperienced ethical hackers. The book outlines the different concepts and explicit information on cybersecurity incident responders, security engineers and how attackers work. 

Pages: 2,164 pages
Price: $33.30 

11) The Hacker Playbook 2 

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This book by Peter Kim comprises a unique method of teaching penetration testing. Apart from that, it addresses all critical problems and other roadblocks an ethical hacker might face in the beginning.

The book teaches how ethical hackers can attack different types of networks and evade anti-virus software in the most effective way. 

Pages: 359 pages
Price: $24.99 

12) The Hardware Hacker

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Ethical hackers interested in hacking hardware will find this book useful. In this book, the author Andrew Huang shapes the fields of hacking and hardware and takes you through the vital aspects of hardware manufacturing.

Pages: 396
Price: $13.49 – $18.95

13) Metasploit: The Penetration Tester’s Guide

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By reading this book written by David Kennedy, Jim O’ Gorman, Devon Kearns and Mati Aharoni, you will get to know about the Metasploit conventions, one of the essential aspects of ethical hacking.

The content used in the book teaches its readers how to use advanced penetration testing techniques, including network reconnaissance and enumeration. 

Pages: 328 pages
Price: $37.03 

14) Nmap Network Scanning 

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This book by Gordon Fydor Lyon is the official guide to the Nmap Security Scanner. It explains port scanning basics for novices. In addition to it, the book provides a detailed insight into the low-level packet crafting methods used by advanced hackers across the globe. 

Pages: 468
Price: $24.88

15) Hacking Exposed 7

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Written by Stuart McClure and Joel Scambray, this is one resourceful and well-knit book that teaches its readers how to upgrade and work on your security system to monitor and defeat the tools and tactics of the cybercriminals.

In addition to it, the book contains some of the most informative case studies that expose the hacker’s latest tactics.

Apart from that, this beginner’s guidebook focuses on the key aspects and skills that are required to be honed in order to block infrastructure hacks, minimize advanced persistent threats and the likes. 

Pages: 768
Price: $55.28

16) Black Hat Python

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 In this latest book by Justin Seitz, you will get to learn how to write network sniffers, infecting virtual machines, manipulate packets, and create hardcore Trojans and the likes.

In addition to it, the book covers some of the well-explained chapters on how to create particular Trojan command and control using GitHub, how to detect sandboxing and automate all types of common malware attacks. 

Pages: 171
Price: $28.98

17) Hacking: Computer Hacking, Security Testing, Penetration Testing and Basic Security 

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By reading this book drafted by Gary Hall and Erin Watson, you will get to explore and learn how to protect yourself from getting hacked by external attackers.

The book reveals the secret techniques used by the genius hackers across the globe. It is said that the well-knit book on ethical hacking is suitable for the beginners and experts, as it outlines all basic principles and advanced techniques of hacking in an explanative way. 

Pages: 136
Price: $11.95

18) Network Security Assessment: 2nd Edition 


An ethical hacker needs certain tools and techniques to carry out seamless and successful hacking. The second edition of the book outlines a refined and updated use of the penetration-testing model.

Moreover, the book teaches us how a determined hacker would browse around all internet-based networks track and find vulnerable components.

Most interestingly, the 2nd edition outlines the latest hacking techniques along with effective defensive strategies to deal with them. 

Pages: 400
Price: $10.57

19) The Shellcoder’s Handbook

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This book by jack Koziol, Chris Anley and John Heasman is a classic compilation that outlines the different functionality of exploits.

Based on the fundamentals of stack overflow, heap overflow, and format string vulnerabilities, this book is the perfect choice for beginners willing to make a successful career in the domain of ethical hacking. 

Pages: 718 pages
Price: $24.93 – $32.77 

20) Ghost in the Wires

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Beginners aspiring to become good ethical hackers must consider reading this book.  Written by Kevin D. Mitnick, William L.

Simon and Steve Wozniak give you a detailed insight into the life of Mitnick and his days of hacking. This is considered a good read, containing both informative and humorous content for the youngsters. 

Pages: 393
Price: $25.99

In Conclusion

Now that you are aware of the top twenty books to fuel your ethical hacking aspirations, analyse and figure out the ones that would suit your niche, place an online order, get it delivered and put a step forward to the world of hacking with confidence. 

Good luck! 

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