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How does social engineering affect a company or organization?

October 14, 2022
How does social engineering affect a company or organization?

The reputation of a company can be compromised by a social engineering attack, generating devastating damage to professional relationships with clients or partners, which leads to loss of trust by said parties.

Social engineering attacks have the capacity to generate serious financial losses and affect businesses in terms of the interruption of operations, resulting in a decrease in productivity at the institutional level. Having knowledge of these negative effects that threaten business continuity is important; knowing how to identify, prevent and counteract social engineering attacks reduces risks and impacts. Implementing appropriate security systems inside and outside a company's infrastructure is the first step in monitoring a company's or organization's traffic, looking for suspicious user activity, unusual domains, and increased data movements and unusual email activities.

( Read also Good practices to avoid social engineering)

Another important factor in which companies or organizations can be affected is by ransomware, this attack aims to infect, encrypt and retain files in order to demand their ransom. As a consequence, the company has the option of paying large sums of money to restore these files or else they will be lost. In this case, it is recommended to create backup copies and constantly monitor them.

Most social engineering attacks, especially the most serious ones, require system-level maintenance and cleanup that prevents things from continuing as before. These can be costs at the productivity level.

There are some tactics such as pretexting, phishing, baiting and similar attacks that fit into the security scheme of a company or organization, since each attack on an employee requires a careful and respective investigation (where the attack came from, who was the victim, how many opened the malicious codes, etc.). These analyzes are necessary to know how to prevent this in the future and mitigate future risks to the security of companies' information.

It must be taken into account that any of these attacks cause financial losses to a company, this is due to the constant sale of information on black markets, the low reputation after customers find out about the attacks and other factors that require economic resources that could be offset in time.

Staff training is a good practice since having awareness and education about the proper use of institutional emails, the proper use of passwords, and so on can help ensure that business attacks are few and do not lead to such large losses, whether these are image or economic.

In addition, the creation of documented policies and protocols should reduce insecurity about the actions to be taken and prevent employees from making hasty or incorrect decisions if they are victims of these attacks.




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