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What is Social Engineering?

Social engineering is a tactic used by attackers to manipulate individuals into divulging sensitive information or performing certain actions. It is based on psychological manipulation and relies on exploiting human emotions, such as trust, fear, or urgency, to trick individuals into providing personal information, login credentials, or money. Social engineering attacks can come in many forms, including phishing emails, phone calls, text messages, or even in-person interactions.

To avoid falling victim to social engineering attacks, it is important to be aware of the common tactics used by attackers and to take steps to protect yourself. Here are some tips to help you stay safe:

  • Be cautious of unsolicited communications. Be wary of emails, phone calls, or messages from unknown sources, or that ask for personal information. Do not trust unsolicited communications, even if they seem legitimate.
  • Don't click on links or download attachments from unknown sources. If you receive an email or message with a link or attachment from an unknown source, don't click on it. Instead, hover your mouse over the link to see where it leads before you click.
  • Be suspicious of urgent requests. Social engineers often use urgency to trick individuals into providing information or taking action quickly. Be wary of requests that create a sense of urgency, such as "act now or your account will be closed."
  • Don't give away personal information. Never provide personal information, such as your password or credit card number, to anyone via email or text message. Legitimate sources will not ask for this information via these channels.
  • Be aware of social engineering attempts on social media. Social engineers often use social media to trick individuals into providing sensitive information. Be cautious of any unsolicited messages or posts, and be sure to only interact with known and verified accounts.
  • Keep your software and security features up-to-date. Make sure that your computer, phone, and other devices have the latest security updates and anti-virus software installed.
  • Educate yourself. Learn about the different forms of social engineering and how to recognize them. By understanding how social engineers operate, you will be better equipped to protect yourself.
  • If you suspect a social engineering attempt, report it. If you suspect that an email or message is a social engineering attempt, do not respond to it. Instead, report it to the appropriate authorities.

By being aware of these tips, you can take steps to protect yourself from social engineering attacks and keep your personal and financial information safe.

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