Social engineering: A hidden threat

Would the sleek social engineering skills of the cyber-criminal penetrate your business networks? 

Cybercrime in Australia is a growing threat with very real consequences, in 2021 Australian businesses lost over 33 billion dollars as a result of being compromised by cybercriminals. To put this into more startling terms, a new cybercrime is reported to the Australian Cyber Security Centre every eight minutes.

One of the easiest ways for a cyber-criminal to exploit your corporate system is through the emerging use of social engineering. Did you know a staggering 90 per cent of cyber security breaches are carried out by bad actors who employ social engineering skills to exploit the willingness, kindness, or curiosity of their targets to gain access to a company’s systems.

Social engineering is carried out via email, SMS, telephone, and even face-to-face and relies on a cybercriminal understanding how to leverage social conventions to motivate a victim to reveal sensitive information.

The most common example of social engineering is pretending to be a customer or other member of staff to develop trust. Cybercriminals will first identify their victim and contact them to spin a fabricated story and once familiarity has been established cybercriminals begin to extract information over time and will leverage this information which could include passwords, login details or other credentials to compromise the integrity of your system.

Check out this video which showcases just some of the non-conventional tactics used by social engineers to extract information from an innocent victim with minimal effort:

A spate of recent high-profile hacks presents an important reminder for businesses to reassess how they are handling their internal security. Because your staff members are at the frontline of your business you must equip them with the tools to identify and stop any attempts at social engineering. Ericom offers a full suite of security solutions and training and can assist you in identifying any weaknesses in your corporate network. For a free comprehensive security audit please get in touch with one of our dedicated security specialists today.

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