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Social Engineering and Cybercriminals

Social engineering refers to a wide range of psychological maneuvering of misleading people to reveal confidential information and imperil its security. There are numerous forms of manipulations, which hackers use to make their victims disclose personal details. Moreover, cybercriminals follow a set of specific social norms within their subculture. This essay aims at examining various types of digital attacks together with societal standards prevailing in the cyber community.

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All computing felonies can be classified into three categories, distinguished by how a crime is committed. An attack may be perpetrated by direct human communication to connect with a target and obtain sensitive information (Salahdine and Kaabouch 3). For example, a criminal calls via an unknown telephone line, introducing themselves as a bank representative, to uncover such elements as an account number and security code. Alternatively, a computer might be utilized, thus, increasing the scope of potential targets (Salahdine and Kaabouch 3). According to Gupta et al., email phishing is the most widespread cybercrime where attackers use a “fake account on social networking sites” to unveil personal information (537). Lastly, social engineering can also include the physical act of obtaining confidential information where an attacker searches it in person (Salahdine and Kaabouch 3). To illustrate, a criminal might hunt the desired papers in a trash can. Hence, an attack may be committed by interpersonal communication, electronic devices, and practical pursuit.

The hacker subculture includes five social standings which act as a foundation for the hierarchal establishment. Close connection to modern technologies is the first component, which can be achieved by continuous exploration (Holt 173). Email phishing cannot be committed without using a computer or mobile appliance. Second, since hacking activities are illegal and punished by severe consequences, secrecy is vital to perform activities safely (Holt 173). Without hiding location information, hackers can be caught and penalized. Next, a hacker must be technically proficient in device operations, discovering and comprehending new techniques on a regular basis (Holt 174). A company installs a new security package, which makes a cybercriminal find an alternative way to hack the system. Additionally, a negative attitude towards the computer security industry is another norm adhered to by hackers. For example, cybercriminals consider themselves as more ethical in providing free access to information compared to security companies. Finally, the age difference between distinct generations of hackers is the stigmatic aspect, dividing them into opposing parts. The younger formation may be more tech-savvy in terms of learning technological novelties. Therefore, cybersociety complies with values to coexist and function healthily.

It is undeniable that particular stereotypes exist with regard to hackers and their activities. The New York Times article, “Russian Intelligence Hackers Are Back, Microsoft Warns, Aiming at Officials of Both Parties,” can help to clarify and give an insight into a third-party view on cybercommunity. It can be noted that the source conveys a formal tone with well-organized language, requiring expert reading abilities. Hackers are rather described as a tool to accomplish political goals and objectives (Sanger and Perlroth). Throughout the article, Sanger and Perlroth did not present any stigmas or put labels on hackers. However, their actions and motives are expressed as aggressive and “malicious” (Sanger and Perlroth). Thereupon, the article is not cluttered with irrational disgrace or cliches concerning the cybercriminal environment.

To conclude, social engineering is an unauthorized act of manipulation with an aim to uncover delicate information. Its activities can be sorted into three types with respect to the approach used to possess classifed knowledge. To continue their operations, hackers abide by a set of specific values, serving as a benchmark for mutual concordance. The perception of cybercommunity assists to understand the news article, which does not articulate a subjective message or try to embarrass the cybercommunity.

Works Cited

Gupta, Surbhi, et al. “A Literature Survey on Social Engineering Attacks: Phishing Attack.” International Conference on Computing, Communication and Automation, 2016, pp. 537-540. Semantic Scholar, Web.

Holt, Thomas. “Subcultural Evolution? Examining the Influence of on- and off-line Experiences on Deviant Subcultures.” Deviant Behavior, vol. 28, no. 2, 2007, pp. 171-198.

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Salahdine, Fatima and Kaabouch, Naima. “Social Engineering Attacks: A Survey.” Future Internet, vol. 11, no. 4, 2019, pp. 1-17.

Sanger, David and Perlroth, Nicole. “Russian Intelligence Hackers Are Back, Microsoft Warns, Aiming at Officials of Both Parties.” The New York Times, 2020, Web.

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