Social engineering… hmm, sounds like a sophisticated term, right?
Well, in reality, it’s a type of cybersecurity threat that makes the most out of the weakest part of our security system. And then offers free access to our network to the hacker.
Doesn’t sound so suave anymore, right?
There was a time when social engineering was all about spreading malware and expecting people to make a mistake. However, since then, it has become much more complicated. Check the following techniques as examples, and you’ll understand what we’re talking about.
5 Social Engineering Techniques
In this section, we’ll talk about a few social engineering techniques and let you know how you can avoid them. However, we’ll still ask you to download the free version of any antivirus software from 1337x proxy and protect your PC with it.
Social Engineering Technique – 1: Phishing
In this type of social engineering, you’ll receive a scam email (with a spam link attached to it) to your mail. Now, if you click on it, the attacker will be able to gain access to your system and steal as much information as they can.
A phishing mail usually comes with a lucrative deal (a message like – you’ve won 3 million!) and a CTA to grab your attention.
How To Prevent – It can be pretty tricky to avoid phishing mail, especially if you consider how rewarding it looks on the outside. Hence, the best way to prevent them would be not to open any email that may sound too lucrative.
Social Engineering Technique – 2: Scareware
Scareware, in essence, is a malware tactic that can trick you into downloading a software program. Hence, the tool will be infused with malware. When you download and install the same, it’ll provide the hacker with access to your PC or smartphone.
The core purpose of scareware is to lead an individual to download a fake tool or damage their PC even further.
How To Prevent: You should never download any tool from a website that looks otherwise suspicious. Also, whenever you’re downloading something on your PC, don’t forget to scan it with your antivirus software before installation.
Social Engineering Technique – 3: Pretexting
Albeit it may seem like a petty crime, pretexting can be pretty effective when done eloquently. In this type of attack, an individual will create a fake identity (whom you might know) and ask for critical information from you.
For example, the person can appear as a Banking official and ask for credentials so that they can “save your account.” But, in the end, their aim is to steal money from you.
How To Prevent: Ignore people who ask for your credentials, whether it’s about your bank or something else. If they’re being too clingy, threaten them by saying that you’ll give their number to an authoritative individual, like the police.
Social Engineering Technique – 4: DNS Spoofing
DNS Spoofing, also known as cache poisoning, is a type of network-based attack.
In this one, an attacker will inject the wrong information into a web cache to provide a negative HTTP-based response to a user. Now, if you end up clicking on it, the person will be able to “steal” traffic from your website to theirs. And, you won’t know anything about it.
How To Prevent: You can prevent DNS Spoofing by using a VPN whenever visiting a site. This, in turn, will make it impossible for the person to hack your computer and go through the encryption provided by the tool.
Social Engineering Technique – 5: Spear Phishing
Otherwise known as whaling, spear-phishing almost works like regular phishing. However, it’s more targeted towards the CEO or any other significant person of a company. It generally requires a lot more effort but is also harder to understand or detect.
How To Prevent: The best way to avoid spear phishing would be to ignore emails that look like phishing. Or, you can also use an email protection system to prevent spam mails from coming into your system.
The Bottom Line
Avoiding a social engineering attack is all about understanding human psychology and being cautious about everything. Don’t open everything you find on the internet, and try not to be too curious about whatever you’ve seen.
Also, if you’re an employee, make sure to follow your organization’s security methodology closely. Don’t make the mistake of trying something on your own. It may not end up well for you.