When I was first approached with the idea for this project, I enjoyed the prospect of it being a worthy challenge while at the same time not quite knowing how it would all turn out. When I spoke with friends and associates about it, their first question was usually, "What's the book about?" My reply, "Steganography," would almost always get the same response. "Stega-what?" After going through this a few times, I changed my response from one word to a summarized explanation. My new canned answer became "The book is about a form of hidden communication called steganography."
This explanation was better received, and I began to notice that people who had no interest in computers or criminal investigations were raising their eyebrows at this topic that they had never heard of before. Either that or my brief explanation gave them a connection to something they have seen or heard about in their everyday lives.
It was these observations that got me thinking not just about steganography, but the context of steganography. These thoughts led to the foundations of this book. I set out purposefully and began working through the book's structure, gathering my research materials and observing what I had originally suspected. There was a fair amount of information on steganography, but the information was usually very specific and technical, rarely touching on how it fit into a larger picture.
It is my hope that this book will show the myriad places that steganography has existed in the past and can exist in modern times.