Many individuals are falling prey under Social Engineering technique. This has turned out to be a serious threat to the society.
Before starting the discussion on Social Engineering, I must elucidate, Social Engineering of information security is different from the Social Engineering of social science, where confidential data are not revealed. Whereas, human beings are manipulated psychologically using various tricks to give away important information. Thus, we can say influencing person in a hasty manner to collect important data is termed as Social Engineering.
How business is getting affected because of it?
Social Engineering concept is straightaway linked to impelling people. The technique has become most prevalent these days, where the attackers first perform complete research of the employees, then contact them and for collecting the company’s secret data, bringing various kinds of losses.
Although sometimes it is used as a tool in many companies for finding faults because of human error, mostly it is used for destructing confidential data creating new challenges for businesses every day.
Various techniques used for Social Engineering
An Employee’s action can have a big sway on data security in business. Clever decisions taken by the employees can sometimes work successfully or might sometime go against them bringing security breaches. So, it is very much necessary for the employees to be alert acting as a guard against social engineering.
Attackers are still practicing social engineering. Here, I am going to discuss the primary techniques used by the criminals. Learn about them!
Scareware- It is the process where the victims are given fabricated threats and false warnings, convincing them that their computers are at help and asking them to install a tool. Once, the victim installs the application the data stored in the system gets leaked.
Luring the victim- Sometimes the victims are lured with the false promise of gifting prizes and awards asking them to fill up necessary information online or on a paper format or to click on online ads. Once, the victim clicks the link the malware gets loaded on the computer leaking the information to the hacker, sitting on other parts of the network.
Phishing and Spear Phishing- Phishing is one of the tricks attackers accomplish by sending emails where they ask the victim to click on a link, which in turn directs them to a website, where the victims are asked to update personal information which includes credit card details, user password, bank account details. Whereas, in Spear phishing, the criminals collect the most specific information which brings most effective and powerful attacks.
Social Networking sites- Social media is a commonplace to carry on both personal and professional work side by side. Sometimes Employee relieves stresses by entering the social networking site after whole day of tiring job.
Entering private chat rooms encourages cybercriminals to approach and manipulate them, getting the necessary information and putting the company at risk.
Direct Calls- Sometimes the attackers calls the victim directly convincing them in various ways to provide confidential data. Sometimes the employees get induced and share the information with the criminals.
Ways to prevent these cybercriminals
Most significant way to stop the social engineers is by being alert and discerning while interacting with others in the organization as the attackers try to manipulate human feelings with fear or inquisitiveness, making the victim fall under their trap.
However, here are the few useful tips that can help to seek your attention in accordance to social engineering techniques:
Be aware of luring offers- one must think twice before accepting any luring offers to find out if those offers are legitimate or it is just to make you fall under a trap.
Not to open suspicious attachments or email- If the sender is unknown one shouldn’t reply and even if the sender is known then also one must confirm the news from other sources before opening the link because sometimes those emails are initiated by hackers which you might not be aware of.
Keeping updated Antivirus- Periodical scanning of the device is very important to detect any kind of malware or ransomware and one must make sure the antivirus is updated automatically on a regular basis.
Lastly, it is the duty of the organization head to train the employees and create different awareness programs on handling internet, building effective communication in the corporate environment and safeguarding against various threats.