Social engineering is the art of using deception to manipulate individuals into divulging confidential or personal information that may be used for fraudulent purposes.
Hackers use social engineering tactics because it is usually easier to exploit your natural inclination to trust . They are seeking to trick you into giving them your passwords or bank information, or access your computer to secretly install malicious software, that will give them control over your computer.
Avoid being a victim of social engineering by following the below tips:
• If it is too good to resist or conveys a sense of urgency, or uses high-pressure sales tactics be skeptical. Never let urgency influence your careful review.
• Solicit the messages or information by using verified sources like search engine or directories.
• Never provide personal information or financial information or passwords.
• Never accept offers of assistance from any unknown source . Similarly, never oblige a request for help or charity of anyone unknown. Seek out reputable charitable organizations , if you would like to donate.
• Be wary of the links in the emails. Hovering over links in email will show the actual URL at the bottom. Carelessly clicking links is a poor choice .
• Set your spam filters to high.
• Hackers, spammers, and social engineers are taking over control of people’s email accounts rampantly. Once they control someone’s email account they prey on the person’s contacts & start sending spams .If you suspect the content not being from the sender (who is your acquaintance) , check with them before opening links or downloading.
• If you don’t know the sender personally , don’t download the attachments or files
• If you receive email from a foreign lottery or sweepstakes, money from an unknown relative, or requests to transfer funds from a foreign country it is guaranteed to be a scam.
• Install updated anti-virus software, firewalls, email filters . Set your operating system to automatically update, and if your smartphone doesn’t automatically update, manually update it whenever you receive a notice to do so. Use an anti-phishing tool offered by your web browser or third party to alert you to risks.
So, security is all about knowing who and what to trust. Knowing when to take a person at their word and when not to; when to trust that the person you are communicating with is indeed the person you think you are communicating with; when to trust that a website is or isn’t legitimate; when to trust that the person on the phone is or isn’t legitimate; when providing your information is or isn’t a good idea.