How to think like an online con artist
Con job, pretexting, social engineering the art and science of manipulating human beings for nefarious ends goes back as far as the origin of the species. The techniques have been practiced and perfected by a rogue's gallery of flimflam artists, from legendary carnival operator P. T. Barnum to infamous FBI mole Robert Hanssen. But in our modern, security centric world, this ancient craft poses an ever present danger: Despite technological advances that present an illusion of security, we are as vulnerable as ever to the con.
IT security pros frequently employ social engineering when analyzing a company's overall security strategy. After all, even a completely locked-down computer network won't protect your company's secrets if someone can "tailgate" a group of employees through the front door, plug a remote-access device into an open network port, and walk out again. And the sad fact is, even a social engineering amateur can be successful. People are gullible, and without a real-world test, you'll never know how vulnerable your company really is. How to think like an online con artist | InfoWorld | Analysis | 2007-10-01 | By Andrew Brandt
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