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Social Engineering, the USB Way

We recently got hired by a credit union to assess the security of its network. The client asked that we really push hard on the social engineering button. In the past, they'd had problems with employees sharing passwords and giving up information easily. Leveraging our effort in the report was a way to drive the message home to the employees.

The client also indicated that USB drives were a concern, since they were an easy way for employees to steal information, as well as bring in potential vulnerabilities such as viruses and Trojans. Several other clients have raised the same concern, yet few have done much to protect themselves from a rogue USB drive plugging into their network. I wanted to see if we could tempt someone into plugging one into their employer's network.

In the past we had used a variety of social engineering tactics to compromise a network. Typically we would hang out with the smokers, sweet-talk a receptionist, or commandeer a meeting room and jack into the network. This time I knew we had to do something different. We heard that employees were talking within the credit union and were telling each other that somebody was going to test the security of the network, including the people element.

To found out how the trap was set, head over to Dark Reading.

Steve Stasiukonis is VP and founder of Secure Network Technologies Inc.
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