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Social Engineering

Social engineering is a type of fraud that exploits your natural inclination to trust the people you know. On social networks and websites, fraudsters posing as your friends and colleagues can fool you into revealing your personal information.

Protect Yourself

These steps can help you prevent con-artists from stealing your personal information:

Learn to Use Privacy Settings

Use privacy settings to make your social network pages accessible only to people you know. Never make your entire profile visible to everyone.

Keep Some Things to Yourself

Never post your full birthday, street address, employer, bank, etc. A dedicated cyber-criminal can learn enough to pose as you for business purposes.

Be Suspicious of New Connections

Think before you accept a new connection from someone whose name you don’t recognize, or from a strange city.  It could be a fake request.

Pick Up the Phone

Ignore emails or profile updates that seek private details such as IDs or account numbers. If you think the request might be valid, then call the institution—using a number you know to be valid—and offer to answer over the telephone.

Beware Software Downloads

Treat software downloads on social networks with the same suspicion as offers received via unsolicited email. Ask your friends about it first, to learn if they had any problems.

Use Security Questions Wisely

Only you and your close friends will know “What was the name of your first pet?” but an enterprising fraudster might be able to guess “What was your high school mascot?”

Look Before You Click

Criminals can hide the destination of a link, so even though the text reads “Visit ABC Corp,” the link might actually go elsewhere. Mouse over the link and check the information bar at the bottom of your browser to see where it really goes.

Get Help

If you have supplied your account information in response to a social engineering scam, contact your financial institution immediately.

BB&T clients can call 800-BANK-BBT (800-226-5228).

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