Social engineering tactics let hackers take cyber attacks to a whole new level by focusing on a specific target. This kind of special attention and extra detail can often be just enough to fool users into clicking, downloading, or otherwise helping a hacker get exactly what they want.

Here are 5 of these scams you should know how to spot and avoid.

  • Phishing – The most common type of social engineering scam, phishing is typically done through email. By posing as a financial institution or government agency, hackers send out urgent-seeming emails that contain malicious attachments or embedded links that when clicked release malware onto your system.
  • Baiting – Like phishing, these emails often appear to come from a legitimate source. Rather than relying on scare tactics these emails instead offer the target some sort of incentive to open attachments or click on links, like a free gift card or a free mobile phone or tablet.
  • Tailgating – This low-tech tactic is still surprisingly common. By pretending to be a fellow employee who forgot their badge or a delivery person, a scammer will ask you to open a door for them that will allow them access to workstations or restricted areas.
  • Pretexting – Another form of phishing, this has a hacker pose as a C-level employee or a supervisor from another department and send an email asking for sensitive information like passwords. They might also send an attachment that contains a hidden malicious payload.
  • Quid Pro Quo – Much like baiting, this tactic has hackers pose as someone who can help the target with a task in exchange for information. Typically this ruse involves the hacker pretending to be IT support, offering to fix a non-existent problem in exchange for login credentials.

Contact Insight Technologies at or (701) 775-5512 to learn more about social engineering scams, and the steps you can take to protect your business from this type of cybercrime.

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Grand Forks
2600 Demers Avenue Suite 101 Grand Forks, ND 58201

1402 43rd Street South
Suite 200
Fargo, ND 58103

Phone: (800) 279-4796 Email: