Social engineering can be defined as a cybersecurity threat that leverages the weakest link in a security mechanism. The workforce of a corporate network is compromised using emotional manipulation & innovative trickery to make them divulge sensitive information. You can invest a lot of money and expertise in security but the human element can be the vulnerable point that hackers can take advantage of. The best way to prevent social engineering attacks is to take preemptive measures.
How to prevent a social engineering attack?
In this space, we will discuss the measures and techniques that can be useful to shield a network.
Beware Of Fraudulent Tech Support
This form of social engineering comes under the category of scareware. The attackers attempt to make people believe that their devices have some kind of problem and trick them into paying for a non-existent issue. You can receive emails or calls regarding the same and the attacker might even ask you to execute a command in the system that will make it unresponsive. Scareware leverages curiosity & fear to steal data or sell pointless software. One must be aware of this to prevent it.
A healthy cybersecurity approach relies a lot on human awareness. As social engineering tactics are based on manipulating behavior, you can stay ahead by ensuring that the entire workforce of an organization understands the different tricks that cybercriminals use.
Phishing simulations can go a long way in ensuring user safety by training the users to detect phishing attempts or phishing emails. The simulation software is usually cloud-based which allows these sessions to be performed remotely by specialists. Depending on the distinct requirements of your organization, the sessions can be modified. Once the simulation is complete, the feedback and metrics can aid in showing the success of the campaign and the areas that need improvement from your staff.
Don’t Fall For Clickbait Techniques
Clickbait is a popular technique that is used by the attackers to trap individuals using deceitful links coupled with tempting headlines. As many legitimate contents & sites use similar tactics to gain the attention of the readers/viewers, it becomes easier for cybercriminals to mislead people.
An alluring advertisement related to news, movies, or games is sent to people. On clicking these click baits, a virus or executable program can be installed to the system which can later be utilized to hack the system.
Prevent Pretexting Attack
Pretexting is a common social engineering technique. It can be used to access sensitive information as the attackers pretend to be a genuine entity. It is different from phishing as the pretexting approach focuses on developing a false sense of trust by using believable contexts. If the victim is not aware, the attacker can manipulate him/her to perform a task that exploits the structural shortcomings of an organization. The most common example of this can be an attacker who poses as an employee of your bank who wants to verify the credentials. It is one of the most regular tactics that offenders use.
Policy on Social Media Privacy/Posting
Social media sites are often the hunting ground of cybercriminals and they use spear-phishing emails to retrieve personal details of the victim. This process requires the target to be groomed by smartly collecting intelligence about him/her. To prevent this, the security policy must have a robust approach regarding social media privacy & posting that employees must adhere to.
If the data, email, and communication are encrypted, the hackers can not access information even if the communication channel gets intercepted. This can be done through SSL certification from trusted authorities.
In addition to that, verification of any site that asks for sensitive information is a must. The URLs can offer an insight into the authenticity of websites. For instance, the URLs starting with “https://” are encrypted websites that can be trusted over the websites that start with “http://” as the latter does not offer a secure connection.
Turn On The Spam Filter
Spam filters can be used to reduce the window of opportunities for offenders indulging in social engineering. The filtration can protect your inbox by segregating and barring the emails that are suspicious in nature. With the spam features, you will be able to categorize emails and detect the deceitful ones seamlessly.
Limited Digital Footprint
Having too many personal details online can provide cybercriminals the information they need to manipulate you. For example, if you have updated your resume in a job portal, you must look to censor the phone number, date of birth, and address. These might be leveraged by the attackers looking to carry out social engineering attacks. It is better to limit the social media settings to “Friends Only”.
Use Passwords Smartly
Ensure that you are never using the same password for different platforms that you are present in. Try to leave zero traces behind and it is always better if you regularly delete all the sessions once you have completed your browsing activities. If your social media account is compromised and you are using the same password for various websites, it can spell trouble as the attacker will invade your privacy in every way possible.
Cybersecurity is a field that not only involves technological approaches but also correcting human behavior in a way that prevents social engineering attacks. The ten points that are mentioned above can help to mitigate the social engineering attacks and prevention. To know more about cyberattacks, you can contact Ksolves experts to gain in-depth knowledge as the saying goes, “Prevention Is Always Better Than The Cure”.
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