Pretexting

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What Does Pretexting Mean?

Pretexting is a social engineering technique in which a fictional situation is created for the purpose of obtaining personal and sensitive information from an unsuspecting individual. It usually involves researching a target and making use of his/her data for impersonation or manipulation. Personal data may include Social Security numbers (SSN), usernames, passwords or other privileged information.

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Techopedia Explains Pretexting

An important aspect of pretexting is establishing a target’s trust. Because information is power, research is the most important aspect of pretexting. For example, the ability to impersonate a tech support representative or telemarketer is useless if a particular target does not accept unknown calls.

Calls from service providers of credit cards, loans and insurance are commonly used. In such cases, a target may be asked to bypass paperwork and apply and agree to service terms over the phone. Under a pretexting scam, a fraudulent caller is likely to have some of this information but ask for other details. For example, a caller may ask for a SSN or even usernames and passwords associated with a bank account.

Legitimate calls are easily identifiable because a caller knows an individual’s information and will only ask for an agreement confirmation to complete a transaction.

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Margaret Rouse
Editor

Margaret jest nagradzaną technical writerką, nauczycielką i wykładowczynią. Jest znana z tego, że potrafi w prostych słowach pzybliżyć złożone pojęcia techniczne słuchaczom ze świata biznesu. Od dwudziestu lat jej definicje pojęć z dziedziny IT są publikowane przez Que w encyklopedii terminów technologicznych, a także cytowane w artykułach ukazujących się w New York Times, w magazynie Time, USA Today, ZDNet, a także w magazynach PC i Discovery. Margaret dołączyła do zespołu Techopedii w roku 2011. Margaret lubi pomagać znaleźć wspólny język specjalistom ze świata biznesu i IT. W swojej pracy, jak sama mówi, buduje mosty między tymi dwiema domenami, w ten…