The person or group behind the act will commonly use social pressure, deception or threats to influence a person into doing something against their interests.
Social engineering is not hacking. Hacking involves the use of computer technologies to gain unauthorised access to systems and networks. Students sometimes use the term ‘hacking’ when in fact they have shared their password.
Social engineering can be used to steal identities, violate people’s privacy and to obtain ‘high-value’ information, such as intimate images. This type of cyber-threat can be subtle, and may appear as a simple request to help a friend. Spotting social engineering attempts can be challenging.
You can decrease your chances of social engineering by using these precautions:
If you’ve been the target of social engineering, and your account or images have been accessed without your permission, follow these steps:
We encourage young people experiencing cyberbullying and related issues to contact the Kids Helpline. Their counsellors are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, free of charge. Counsellors can also chat online at Kids Helpline.