THE BASICS: What Is Social Engineering ?

social-engineering

SOCIAL ENGINEERING – The art of human manipulation to extract information without the subject knowing.

Social Engineering is typically used by scammers to get details such as passwords and credit card numbers, but also more subtle pieces of information that will allow an attacker to reach much further into your personal affairs.

For example, if someone was able to obtain your name, address, date of birth, social security number, married of maiden name, home or mobile number – that could be enough to:

  • Access your email (and then…)
    • Reset banking passwords
      • Change account numbers for existing payments (rent / mortgage, car lease, credit cards)
      • Access Amazon account
    • Change delivery address for replacement credit cards, PIN numbers, Amazon orders, replacement phone SIM cards
  • Apply for news credit cards and loans

Typically social engineering scams occur over the telephone in person, by confidence tricksters and now more commonly organised crime gangs.

 

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About the Author: Klaus Behz