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Social Engineering a General Approach


  • Valerica GREAVU-SERBAN


  • Oana SERBAN



Social engineering is considered to be a taboo subject in nowadays society. It involves the use of social skills or to obtain usernames, passwords, credit card data, or to compromise or altering the information and systems of an entity. Social engineering methods are numerous and people using it are extremely ingenious and adaptable. This technique takes advantage of the intrinsic nature of mankind, to manipulate and obtain sensitive information, persuading people into divulge it, using exceptional communication skills. Thus, five models of persuasion were identified, based on: simplicity, interest, incongruity, confidence and empathy, exploiting key factors which predispose people to fall victim to attacks of social engineering such as greed, self-interest, guilt or ignorance. It is well known fact that security is as strong as the weakest link in its chain (individuals) therefore, beyond technical measures, staff training is the key to success in defending against such attacks.

Suggested Citation

  • Valerica GREAVU-SERBAN & Oana SERBAN, 2014. "Social Engineering a General Approach," Informatica Economica, Academy of Economic Studies - Bucharest, Romania, vol. 18(2), pages 5-14.
  • Handle: RePEc:aes:infoec:v:18:y:2014:i:2:p:5-14

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