The Curious Case of the $8 Million Carnegie Library Heist
Donald L. Buresh, Ph.D., J.D., LL.M.
Morgan State University
DOI : https://doi.org/10.47191/ijsshr/v4-i10-03

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This paper discusses and analyzes the Carnegie Library heist by Greg Priore, assisted by John Schulman, the owner of Caliban Book Shop. The essay outlines the sequence of events that led up to the arrest and conviction of these two individuals. The article then reviews the lists of insider threat indicators that several authors have proposed. Third, the insider threat indicators that would have identified Greg Priore were highlighted. Best practices to recognize an insider threat actor are described. Finally, the article concludes by stating potential lessons learned and observing that focusing on security is a dynamic process where constant vigilance is essential.


Caliban Book Shop, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Greg Priore, Insider Theft Actors, John Schulman


1) SUN TZU (TRANSLATED BY RALPH D. SAWYER), THE ART OF WAR (Barnes & Noble Books 1994). What this adage means is that one should know one’s enemies much better than what one knows one’s friends.

2) Travis McDade, The Inside Story of the $8 Million Heist from the Carnegie Library, THE SMITHSONIAN (Sep. 2020), available at https://www.smithsonianmag.com/arts-culture/theft-carnegie-library-books-maps-artworks-180975506/.

3) GILLIAN DARLEY, FACTORY (Reaktion Books, Ltd. 2003), available at https://archive.org/details/factoryobjekt00darl/mode/2up.

4) McDade, supra, note XXX.

5) Kayla Epstein, Archivist and bookseller plead guilty to pilfering $8M in rare texts from Carnegie Library, THE WASHINGTON POST (Jan. 4, 2020), available at https://www.washingtonpost.com/history/2020/01/14/carnegie-library-book-theft/.

6) Travis, supra, note XXX.

7) Incunables, THE FREE DICTIONARY (n.d.), available at https://www.thefreedictionary.com/incunables

8) Travis, supra, note XXX.

9) History.com Editors, Renaissance, HISTORY.COM (last updated Aug. 27, 2021), available at https://www.history.com/topics/renaissance/renaissance.

10) Travis, supra, note XXX.

11) Epstein, supra, note XXX.

12) Travis, supra, note XXX.

13) Epstein, supra, note XXX.

14) Travis, supra, note XXX.

15) Epstein, supra, note XXX.

16) Eric Dosal, 8 Insider Threat Indicators to Watch out For, COMPUQUIP (Mar. 30, 2020), available at https://www.compuquip.com/blog/insider-threat-indicators.

17) Ellen Zhang, The Early Indicators of an Insider Threat, DIGITAL GUARDIAN (Aug. 11, 2020), available at https://digitalguardian.com/blog/early-indicators-insider-threat.

18) Help Systems Staff, Five Malicious Insider Threat Indicators and How to Mitigate the Risk, CORE SECURITY (n.d.), available at https://www.coresecurity.com/blog/five-malicious-insider-threat-indicators-and-how-mitigate-risk.

19) Maddie Rosenthal, Insider Threat Indicators: 11 Ways to Recognize an Insider Threat, TESSIAN (Jun. 17, 2020), available at https://www.tessian.com/blog/insider-threat-indicators-how-to-recognize-an-insider-threat/.

20) Defense Security Service, Insider Threat, COUNTERINTELLIGENCE DIRECTORATE (n.d.), available at https://home.army.mil/bragg/application/files/3215/0515/6485/InsiderThreat.pdf.

21) Travis, supra, note XXX.

22) Netwrix Staff, Insider Threat Prevention Best Practices, NETWRIX (n.d.), available at https://www.netwrix.com/Insider_Threat_Prevention_Best_Practices.html.

23) Isaac Kohen, Insider Threat Prevention: 5 Steps to Improving Defensive Posture By the End of 2021, BUSINESS 2 COMMUNITY (Aug. 10, 2021), available at https://www.business2community.com/cybersecurity/insider-threat-prevention-5-steps-to-improving-defensive-posture-by-the-end-of-2021-02424521.

24) NITTF Staff, Protect Your Organization from the Inside Out: Government Best Practices, NATIONAL INSIDER THREAT TASK FORCE (2016), available at https://www.dni.gov/files/NCSC/documents/products/Govt_Best_Practices_Guide_Insider_Threat.pdf.

25) The average yearly value of goods stolen by Priore was $320,000 (= $ 8 million / 25 years). If an audit had been conducted every two years, the approximate amount that Priore may have stolen would be $640,000 (= 2 years * $320,000 of goods stolen per year).

26) Robert Burns, To a Mouse, POETRY FOUNDATION (n.d.), available at https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/43816/to-a-mouse-56d222ab36e33


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