train your resilience against social engineering attacks

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By SagheerAbbas

This is the third blog in our series on Governance, Risk, and Compliance. Businesses in the Dayton region need to be extra careful about protecting their sensitive data and client information in today’s ever-evolving digital world. Social engineering attacks is one especially sneaky and widespread kind of cyberattack. We shall define social engineering in this blog article and offer doable countermeasures to keep your company safe from these sneaky assaults.

What are Social Engineering Attacks?

Social engineering is the practice of psychologically coercing others into divulging private information, carrying out specified tasks, or allowing unwanted access. Attackers take advantage of weaknesses and people’s natural tendency to trust to obtain unauthorized access to systems or private information. There are many different types of social engineering assaults. Phishing emails, luring, tailgating, pretexting, and even physical impersonation are some examples of these. Attackers frequently take advantage of workers’ ignorance and eagerness to aid, mislead, or take advantage of others.

Social engineering is one of the most dangerous challenges to organizations in the past. Phishing attacks continue to constitute roughly 90% of all data breaches, for example. It is essential to teach staff members about the various social engineering strategies that attackers deploy. Awareness of the techniques being used helps people become more watchful and better able to recognize and react to any dangers.

Strategies to Protect Against Social Engineering Attacks

Putting in place a strong defense against social engineering assaults necessitates a multifaceted strategy that includes staff knowledge, continuous assessment, and technology protections. Now let’s explore some of the best tactics to strengthen your company’s defenses against these attacks:

Employee Education and Awareness

The cornerstone of every successful security program is education. Organize frequent training sessions to increase knowledge of social engineering techniques. It is important to provide personnel with training on identifying and handling any risks. Talk about things like how to spot phishing emails, how to spot shady phone calls, and how important it is to confirm requests for private information.

The training program must interest the audience, and you should update the information once a year. Implement a monthly training program with around 5 to 10 minutes of instruction. You can raise the possibility that staff members will finish the class by implementing a program that makes use of brief training sessions. Additionally, by keeping the program running and offering regular courses, you help your team remember the material.

Strong Password Hygiene

Whenever feasible, encourage staff members to set up multi-factor authentication (MFA) and create strong, one-of-a-kind passwords for every account. Establish a password management strategy that forbids the use of readily guessed passwords and mandates yearly password updates. Passphrases are becoming increasingly used in businesses as a way to guarantee complexity and reduce guessability.

A passphrase is simply a phrase made up of more than 15 characters that is difficult to figure out. This may be updated once a year to eliminate the brute force hacking capability of a supercomputer. For instance, try IloveEatingP1ckles if you believe that pickles are the grossest thing ever. There is very little likelihood of someone guessing those words. Sure, a supercomputer might be able to crack it using a dictionary and brute force methods, but it would take much too long. Not to add that for most individuals, that is a very improbable circumstance.

Create and maintain an incident response plan that describes what should be done in the event of a social engineering assault. This strategy needs to outline precise roles and duties, communication procedures, and countermeasures for potential attacks. Repeatedly doing exercises and simulations will help determine how successful the strategy is. The most effective way to begin drills and simulations is with yearly tabletop exercises. Use these tabletops similarly to a wargame, where the staff decides how to effectively manage an issue after acting out a scenario—such as a ransomware attack.

Secure IT Infrastructure

Make sure that intrusion detection systems, strong firewalls, and current antivirus software are all in place to safeguard your company’s IT infrastructure. Update and patch all software often to fix security holes that hackers could exploit. Any software must have this. Regular software updates are always going to be one of the most crucial parts of any information security program.

Limit Access

Put the least privilege principle into practice by only allowing staff members access to the tools they need to do their duties. To reduce the possible attack surface, assess and eliminate superfluous access rights regularly. An attacker’s visibility within your infrastructure will be significantly reduced if a user’s account is compromised.

Establish a Culture of Security

Encourage workers to report suspicious situations, keep lines of communication open, and recognize and promote effective security practices to cultivate a culture of security inside your company. Integrate security knowledge into your company’s core principles and give each employee a feeling of accountability.


Developing staff education and technical defenses together is a continuous activity that builds resistance against social engineering attacks. Businesses in the Dayton region may improve their overall cybersecurity posture, safeguard sensitive data, and maintain client confidence by comprehending social engineering tactics and putting in place thorough security measures. Recall that preventing cyberattacks is a never-ending struggle and that the best way to lessen the risks to your company is by constant learning and adjustment.

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