Tips To Help You Avoid Becoming A Social Engineering VictimSocial engineering has serious penalties. Because the aim of social engineering is to pressure someone to provide information that leads to ill-gotten gains, anything is possible. Social engineering attacks are hard to guard against for various reasons. Firstly, they aren’t well documented and secondly, social engineers are limited only by their imaginations.
After understanding what social engineering is, let us have a look at how you can protect yourself from being manipulated.
- Install Antivirus Software or a security Suite: – such as SolarWinds and ensure your software is up to date. You must also be certain that your computer and other devices are running the latest versions of the relevant operating software. Where possible, set the operating system to update automatically. Having the latest software versions on your devices will help to ward off the most recent security threats.
- Consider the Source – Finding a USB stick is not necessarily a good find. It could be loaded with malware, waiting to infect your computer. With that said, a text from your bank is not necessarily from your bank. Spoofing a trusted source is relatively easy. Avoid clicking links or opening attachments from suspicious sources. You would do even better to consider all sources suspicious and don’t click on links – ever. No matter how legitimate that email appears, it is safer to type a URL into the browser instead of clicking on a link.
- If it sounds too good to be true - Investigate any requests for money, personal information, or any item of value before handing it over. There is a pretty good chance it is a scam – and even if it is not, better to be safe than sorry.
- Slow Down– Social engineers – is such a polite term for what these people are and do - often count on their target to move quickly, without considering the possibility that a scammer may be behind the email, phone call, or face-to-face request on which they are acting. Stop and think about the request and whether it makes sense – if you do this you will be more likely to act in your own best interest.
- Your Email Software Can Help You – Most email clients can help you filter out junk mails, including scams. If you think yours is not doing enough, do a quick online search to find out how to change its settings. The objective here is to set your spam filters to high as this will weed out as much junk mail as possible.
- Use Advanced Threat Protection – Protect your organization against sophisticated threats such as phishing and zero-day malware and automatically investigate and remediate attacks. Advanced Threat Protection solutions differ in their approaches and components. Most ATP solutions include a combination of netowrk devices, email gateways,malware protection systems, and central management consols for alerts and managing defenses.
- Implement Multi-factor Authenctication – Multi-factor authenctification (MFA) is a security system that verifies a user's identity by requiring multiple credentials. MFA is an important part of identity and access management (IAM).
Conclusion: Social engineering is everywhere, online and offline. Your best defence against this kind of attacks is to educate yourself so that you are aware of the risks – and stay alert.