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Penetration Testing Techniques – An Antidote to Social Engin

by rickpetko9179

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Social engineering is one of the fastest growing threats in today’s world of IT and computing. Recent studies have shown that attacks using social engineering tactics increased significantly in recent years. Attacks through phishing emails, phone calls, and USB sticks with Trojan horse programs are frequently used in social engineering attacks. Employers have been found to leak confidential information in return for receiving free gifts. Increased social engineering attacks are proving to be the emerging threat in cyber security. However, with the right approach, social engineering attacks can be thwarted in the early stages.



Assessing social engineering attacks is best done by commissioning a specialist security firm to simulating a range of social engineering attacks to identify weaknesses and provide solutions to improve defences. Social engineering assessments are often performed alongside other penetration testing services such as network penetration testing, wireless penetration, security code review, web application testing, security build reviews and database security audits.

Penetration testing can reduce the threat of social engineering attacks. Penetration testing simulates a range of cyber attacks to discover and eliminate security vulnerabilities through remedial actions detailed in summary reports.


Many social engineering tactics target companies with weak defenses to elicit confidential information and to gain access to corporate networks and systems. Networks with weak security frequently get compromised. Network penetration testing protects networks from cyber attacks. Network penetration testing includes scanning and manual interrogation of external networks, internal networks, and wireless networks. Wireless networks frequently have weak security. Since the development of the wireless technology, security has always been a major concern and in the worst cases information sent over wireless network could be intercepted and misused. In network penetration testing, wireless networks are given special attention. So, whatever network you are having you can feel safe through network penetration.


Social engineers frequently use spoofed web applications in their attacks. Web applications have security vulnerabilities of their own which can be abused to gain full control of the application and underlying servers. These security holes are often exploited by the attackers and can include SQL injection, cross-site scripting, file upload abuses, directory traversal and more. E-commerce site, corporate sites, share point portals are frequently targeted. To reduce the threat of these attacks web application penetration testing can be employed. Like all penetration testing exercises, the aim is to improve security and reduce the risks of a compromise. So, whatever will be tactics and targets of the social engineers you can feel safe through a robust programme of penetration testing.


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