Today, one of the biggest threats to companies everywhere involves social engineering attacks. It is important for everyone to understand what social engineering is, some of the most common social engineering techniques, and how they can use this protect people’s login credentials from phishing attacks. Usually, a social engineering attack is conducted in an effort to can someone login credentials. This is usually used to access an email account, credit card information, or even to listen in on someone’s phone calls. When people compromise their personal information, they could end up placing not only their information depressed but also the information of the company. Phishing attacks are a major threat today and it is important for companies to make sure they educate their employees on how a phishing campaign usually unfolds. By protecting personal data and sensitive information from harm, they can protect themselves against social Engineers. As one of the most important components of cyber security, it is important to understand what phishing emails look like and how they might be used to steal someone’s sensitive information or personal information.
What Are the Most Common Examples of a Social Engineering Attack?
A social engineering attack usually unfolds with someone seeking to use information that is readily available, such as on social media accounts, to make themselves look like someone they are not. Then, they use this to steal confidential information, such as access to the bank account. When it comes to gaining access to be confidential resources, there are a few common ways that this might be done. These include:
- Phishing Attack: A phishing attack usually uses deceptive emails, websites, landing pages, and text messages in an effort to steal personal information.
- Spear Phishing Attack: A spear phishing attack is a more focused example of a social engineering attack. In a spear phishing attack, extra information is gained about a single person to try to make the attack look more convincing.
- Quid Pro Quo: A quid pro quo will rely on an exchange of information or service in an effort to convince someone to surrender his or her login credentials.
- Tailgating: If a tailgating attack unfolds, this relies on a human trusting someone else to give that person physical access to a secure location. If someone simply forgets to close the door behind them, this is a great way for someone to enter a confidential environment.
- Vishing: Similar to phishing attacks, this type of attack uses voicemails to convince someone that they need to act quickly or something bad will happen to them.
- Baiting: If someone is trying to bait someone else online, they are trying to “guilt” them into doing something that will surrender confidential information about them or their company.
- Pretexting: In this type of attack, there is someone who tries to fake their identity to trick someone into surrendering confidential information.
- Water-Holing: This is a sophisticated type of social engineering attack that will affect not only the website but also its visitors with types of malware.
These are just a few of the most common types of social engineering attacks. They are evolving every day and criminals usually take advantage of human emotions in an effort to pull off a successful attack. Therefore, it is critical for companies to make sure they focus on educating their employees to make sure they do not fall prey to these types of attacks.
What Are Some of the Most Common Emotions Used in Social Engineering Attacks?
There are several types of emotions that someone might use to try to convince that person to surrender an email address, a social security number, or other types of confidential information. These include:
- Fear: One of the most powerful human emotions is fear. Therefore, criminals will use fear to try to convince someone to surrender confidential information. They might say that the person is under investigation for tax fraud or is being actively investigated for a crime. Then, they will use this information to steal confidential information regarding that person’s taxes or activities.
- Greed: Greed is another powerful human emotion. Sometimes, criminals will tell someone that they can transfer a million dollars into their account just by giving them their bank account number and routing number. This is one of the most common ways that criminals gain access to someone’s bank account.
- Curiosity: People always want to be the first person to know something. Therefore, criminals will pay attention to the news. Then, they will offer someone confidential information about a recent event that happened on the news in exchange for something else. This is how a quid pro quo phishing attack might happen.
- Helpfulness: There are lots of situations where someone might feel helpless. Therefore, they are looking for someone to lend a helping hand. The reality is that it feels good to help someone. Therefore, someone might feel like they are helping a member of the company when they give them their login information.
- A Sense of Urgency: If people feel like there is a time limit on something, they end up not thinking straight. Therefore, a sense of urgency is commonly used by cybercriminals to convince someone to act before they are truly ready. Therefore, it is critical for people to keep their wits about them when they receive information that tells them that they need to surrender their phone number and home address immediately in order to take care of a sensitive issue.
These are a few of the most common emotions that criminals will use to take advantage of someone. Therefore, it is important for companies to make sure they educate their employees on how they can keep their wits about them and prevent and surrendering confidential information to a potential cybercriminal. With proper education, it is possible for companies to protect themselves and their employees from harm. When people stick together and educate each other on these cyberattacks, the chances of falling victim to one of them will drop dramatically.