Gordon Lyon

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Gordon Lyon
Fyodor Hope6 Appelbaum 1100x1100.jpg
Born1977 (age 44–45)
Other namesFyodor Vaskovich
Known forNmap

Gordon Lyon (also known by his pseudonym Fyodor Vaskovich[1]) is an American network security expert,[2] creator of Nmap and writer of books, websites, and technical papers about network security. He is a founding member of the Honeynet Project and was Vice President of Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility.

Personal life[edit]

Lyon has been active in the network security community since the mid-1990s. His handle, "Fyodor", was taken from Russian author Fyodor Dostoyevsky.[3] Most of his programming is done in the C, C++, and Perl programming languages.

Opposition to grayware[edit]

In December 2011, Lyon published his strong dislike of the way Download.com started bundling grayware with their installation managers and concerns over the bundled software, causing many people to spread the post on social networks, and a few dozen media reports. The main problem is the confusion between Download.com-offered content[4][5] and software offered by original authors; the accusations included deception as well as copyright and trademark violation.[5]

Lyon lost control of the Nmap SourceForge page in 2015, with Sourceforge taking over the project's page and offering adware wrapped download bundles.[6][7] The original SourceForge page no longer contains any files [8] and the Sourceforge "mirror" page [9] used to hijack the Nmap account redirects to the official https://nmap.org/.


Lyon maintains several network security web sites:

  • Nmap.Org – Host of the Nmap security scanner and its documentation
  • SecTools.Org – The top 100 network security tools (ranked by thousands of Nmap users)
  • SecLists.Org – Archive of the most common security mailing lists
  • Insecure.Org – His main site, offering security news/updates, exploit world archive, and other misc. security resources

Published books[edit]

Lyon has written and co-authored several books:

  • Know Your Enemy: Revealing the Security Tools, Tactics, and Motives of the Blackhat Community,[10] co-authored with other members of the Honeynet Project. A 2nd edition is now available,[11] as are sample chapters.
  • Stealing the Network: How to Own a Continent.[12] Hacker fiction, but tries to stay realistic. Co-authored with Kevin Mitnick and other hackers. Gordon's chapter is freely available online.
  • Nmap Network Scanning[13]


Public interviews with Lyon/Vaskovich have been posted by SecurityFocus, Slashdot, Zone-H, TuxJournal, Safemode, and Google. Many of these provide more personal details than his official bio page does.[14]


Lyon attends and speaks at many security conferences.[15] He has presented at DEFCON, CanSecWest, FOSDEM, IT Security World, Security Masters' Dojo, ShmooCon, IT-Defense, SFOBug, and others.[16]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "! S a f e m o d e . o r g !". May 15, 2019. Archived from the original on May 15, 2019. Retrieved November 24, 2021.
  2. ^ Leyden, John (October 5, 2012). "Experts troll 'biggest security mag in the world' with DICKish submission". The Register. Retrieved January 17, 2021.
  3. ^ "About me". Retrieved January 17, 2021.
  4. ^ Krebs, Brian (December 6, 2011). "Download.com Bundling Toolbars, Trojans?". Krebs on Security. Retrieved January 17, 2021.
  5. ^ a b Lyon, Gordon (June 27, 2012). "Download.com Caught Adding Malware to Nmap & Other Software". Retrieved January 17, 2021. we suggest avoiding CNET Download.com entirely
  6. ^ "Sourceforge Hijacks the Nmap Sourceforge Account". Seclists.org. June 3, 2015. Retrieved January 17, 2021.
  7. ^ Gallagher, Sean (June 3, 2015). "Black "mirror": SourceForge has now seized Nmap audit tool project". Ars Technica. Retrieved January 17, 2021.
  8. ^ "Nmap download". Retrieved January 17, 2021.
  9. ^ "Sourceforge Nmap mirror page". Retrieved January 17, 2021.
  10. ^ The Honeypot Project (2002). Know Your Enemy: Revealing the Security Tools, Tactics, and Motives of the Blackhat Community. Addison-Wesley. ISBN 0-201-74613-1.
  11. ^ The Honeypot Project (2002). Know Your Enemy: Revealing the Security Tools, Tactics, and Motives of the Blackhat Community (2 ed.). Addison-Wesley. ISBN 0-321-16646-9.
  12. ^ 1131ah; Rogers, Russ; Beale, Jay; Grand, Joe; Fyodor; FX; Craig, Paul; Mullen, Timothy; Parker, Tom (2004). Stealing the Network: How to Own a Continent. Syngress. ISBN 1-931836-05-1.
  13. ^ Lyon, Gordon (2008). Nmap Network Scanning. Nmap Project. ISBN 978-0-9799587-1-7.
  14. ^ "Fyodor Answers Your Network Security Questions". Slashdot. Retrieved January 17, 2021.
  15. ^ "Fyodor's Nmap Presentations". Retrieved January 17, 2021.
  16. ^ DEFCONConference (February 7, 2014). "DEF CON 13 - Fyodor, Hacking Nmap". YouTube. Archived from the original on December 13, 2021. Retrieved January 17, 2021.

External links[edit]