Social Engineering

by | May 31, 2022 | Uncategorized | 0 comments

Introduction

Social engineering is the skill of deceiving people in order to obtain vital information that can be used for malevolent purposes. Instead of focusing on the insecurities of a network or a machine, social engineering focuses on the frailty of people.

How does it take’s place?

Research about the target or company:

An attacker obtains as much information as possible before assaulting the target’s or organization’s network in order to infiltrate the system.

Social engineering is a strategy that aids in the extraction of information as the attacker engages in activities such as dumpster diving, checking the company’s website for employee information.

Target selection:

Typically, if you are targeting an organization, an attacker will select different targets for obtaining sensitive data after conducting sufficient research on the target company.

He prefers to target employees who are dissatisfied with their jobs or career, since they are simpler to manipulate.

Developing trust:

Once the attacker has identified the target for social engineering, he attempts to form a bond with that employee in order to acquire his or her trust.

Exploit the trust:

Once an attacker has established trust, he uses the trust to obtain essential data such as an organization’s account, financial information, and so on.

Social Engineering Techniques:

There are three types of social engineering techniques, Human Based, Technology Based.

Human Based

Impersonation is when an attacker poses as a legitimate user and attempts to obtain data.

Vishing is Gathering data from a user over the phones by impersonating a reliable source.

Eavesdropping occurs when an unauthorised individual listens in on a communication between employees or authorised personnel.

Shoulder surfing is when you sneak onto someone’s laptop without their consent.

Dump Diving: This attacker searches the target’s trash for sensitive information.

Riffing is the process of gaining access to the organization through the assistance of an authorized person.

Honey trap: In this type of attack, the attacker establishes the connection with the target in order to win confidence and obtain information.

Technology Based

Phishing occurs when an attacker clones an official website and sends it to the victim in order to obtain credentials. Angler phishing is the practise of impersonating a customer care representative on social media. Spear phishing refers to phishing assaults that are directed at certain organizations or individuals.

Spam email: An attacker sends an email with malware, and if the user opens and downloads the files, the computer is infected with malware.

Pop-up window attacks: An attacker may use XSS to inject his command into a website, and whenever a user enters his credentials or information, it is transferred to the attacker’s computer.

Scareware: An attacker may send you adverts or pop – up windows saying you have a virus in order to terrify you into downloading dangerous software.

Prevention

As a serious threat to your organization’s security, you must prioritise the prevention and mitigation of these attacks as a core component of your cybersecurity strategy.

Being aware can help you protect yourself from majority of the social engineering attempts that occur in the digital arena.

In every organization every person should be aware of the most frequent social engineering techniques, as well as the emotional triggers used by scammers to take advantage of individuals.

A complete social engineering and security awareness training course should teach employees to do the following.

Do not open emails and files from unspecified sources:

If you do not know who sent the email, you are not compelled to answer. Even if you know them and are sceptical of their message, double-check and validate the information from other sources, such as by phone or straight from a service provider’s website. Keep in mind that email addresses are continually being spoofed.

Use multifactor authentication:
User credentials are one of the most valuable pieces of data that an attackers want. In the event of a system intrusion, using multifactor authentication helps to protect your account.

Update your antivirus software:

Check for automatic updates or make it a routine to download the most recent versions very first thing each day. Check to see if updates are being distributed on a regular basis, and scan your system for any infections. Be wary of any unwanted message, especially if it comes from someone they don’t know.

Real-Time Social Engineering Scams

Voice Scams

In this type of social engineering scam, attackers pose as legitimate representatives of a bank or other organization in order to dupe consumers into completing a transaction or transferring money. These aren’t technical attacks.

They use sophisticated and highly intelligent scripts to acquire people’s confidence and trust so that they will readily reveal secret information. After persuading a victim of the critical necessity to transfer funds, the victim logs into their account.

The user begins a transfer under the guidance of the attacker, following instructions to enter details such as address, payment amount, and more. Once completed, the victim has completed a transfer that is unnoticed by fraud detection software.

Once funds are sent to the attacker’s account, they are almost always irretrievable.

Biometric behavioural scams

Behavioural biometrics detect attempts by scammers to use information obtained through social engineering attacks by monitoring how information is submitted rather than what information is entered.

Typing habits, mouse doodling, and session length are some of the behaviours that can be exploited to distinguish between scammers and legitimate users.

A segmented typing pattern can suggest that a fraudster is dictating an account number to the person using the keyboard, revealing that a scam is underway.

Conclusion

attacker’s strategies are continuously evolving, and they are creating new and more complex social engineering tactics, so the ones we see now are bound to change.

The rise of digital banking, speedier payments, and peer-to-peer networks is fuelling fraudulent activities. So take care as much as you can and do not allow anything that you don’t know in your systems.