Social engineering to access sensitive or private information is one of the most dangerous and effect methods for penetrating common network security measures. Relying on techniques and practices mastered by foreign intelligence services and criminals from around the globe, social engineering leverages propensities and patterns of conduct by humans to bypass technical network defenses, and basically opens the door to information through individuals with legitimate access. Industrial espionage and other criminal activity takes advantage of basic human behavior.

Awareness of common techniques used by aggressors, appropriate response measures, and best individual security practices will help employees of government agencies, private industry, health care facilities, financial institutions or anywhere else that regularly stores sensitive information, be prepared for and prevent information loss.