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What to Do to Prevent Social Engineering Attacks?

by | Nov 1, 2021 | BLOG

Knowing what to do to prevent Social Engineering attacks is essential to ensuring internet security.

After all, cybersecurity is all about knowing who and what to trust when it comes to protecting your digital information.

Here is everything you need to know about what to do to avoid Social Engineering attacks.

What Social Engineering Is

Even the strongest security systems are vulnerable when people accessing those systems are tricked into providing sensitive information such as login credentials or account details.

Cybercriminals often use human psychology and the art of manipulation to scare, confuse, or rush you into opening a malicious link or attachment, or providing personal information through a process known as “social engineering.”

That is why it is so important not to ignore the 7 Signs Your Business Needs to Improve the Security of Sensitive Data.

How Do Social Engineering Attacks Work?

Social engineering tactics exploit our basic human need to respond to urgent requests (especially those from a person in authority), to make a problem go away, or simply to be useful to trick us into providing information that can be used to commit financial fraud.

Major events such as public health emergencies (eg Covid-19), natural disasters and high-profile elections, or even common occurrences like tax and holiday seasons, present ideal opportunities for fraudsters to take advantage of our anxiety and curiosity.

Criminals also often try to scare us and threaten the consequences if we do not respond.

How to Identify Social Engineering Attacks

There are basically three ways to identify such techniques before we know how to prevent Social Engineering attacks:

Fear as a Driver

Sending threatening or intimidating emails, calls, and texts that appear to come from an authority such as a police officer, the tax department or a bank are techniques that social engineers use to scare you into action, according to their demands for personal information or money.

Urgent Requests

Suspicious emails or texts, which include urgent requests for personal information, are a big warning sign that someone is trying to deceive you.

Irresistible Opportunities

If you are offered free access to an application, game, or program in exchange for login credentials, beware! You should never share your login credentials with anyone.

Also remember that free software or applications often contain malicious code, especially when it comes in the form of unsolicited online offers.

Other common scams include offering to split a lottery prize or information about a profitable employment opportunity.

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What to Do to Prevent Social Engineering Attacks?

Be wary of requests regarding your personal information. Remember that your bank will never email or call you asking you to disclose personal information such as your password, credit/debit card number, or your mother’s maiden name.

Install antivirus, antispyware, and Internet firewall tools purchased from trusted resellers or vendors.

Keep these programs turned on and continuously updated to protect your devices against malicious software, and always follow the 8 Tips for Proper Password Protection.

Also be wary of downloading free applications, files, programs, software, or screensavers.

Malicious code such as spyware (which secretly monitors what you do online) and keystroke loggers (which secretly track what you are typing) can be hidden in the downloaded file or application and be used to access personal information such as login credentials.

Try to invest equally in encryption for your company’s cybersecurity.

Also, slow down and do not let urgent messages get in your way.

Always take the time to carefully review the details and research the facts before taking any action.

 

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