Social Engineering: The Art of Human Hacking

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John Wiley & Sons, Nov 29, 2010 - Computers - 416 pages
3 Reviews
The first book to reveal and dissect the technical aspect of many social engineering maneuvers

From elicitation, pretexting, influence and manipulation all aspects of social engineering are picked apart, discussed and explained by using real world examples, personal experience and the science behind them to unraveled the mystery in social engineering.

Kevin Mitnick—one of the most famous social engineers in the world—popularized the term “social engineering.” He explained that it is much easier to trick someone into revealing a password for a system than to exert the effort of hacking into the system. Mitnick claims that this social engineering tactic was the single-most effective method in his arsenal. This indispensable book examines a variety of maneuvers that are aimed at deceiving unsuspecting victims, while it also addresses ways to prevent social engineering threats.

  • Examines social engineering, the science of influencing a target to perform a desired task or divulge information
  • Arms you with invaluable information about the many methods of trickery that hackers use in order to gather information with the intent of executing identity theft, fraud, or gaining computer system access
  • Reveals vital steps for preventing social engineering threats

Social Engineering: The Art of Human Hacking does its part to prepare you against nefarious hackers—now you can do your part by putting to good use the critical information within its pages.


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User Review - Flag as inappropriate

The Book is written and arranged in the style of a textbook. It's a bit of computer security and a bit of personal safety. It lacks depth. Also, I found it repetitive, framing, conditioning eliciating described in the book are similar. The writer's Examples are repeated over many times. I was skimming paragraphs, but page 100 I was skipping entire pages. 

Review: Social Engineering: The Art of Human Hacking

User Review  - Joycec - Goodreads

This book gives a good overview of how we get hacked and/or taken advantage of. It's great insight into how trusting we can be and how others can use this to exploit us. There are parts that are way too technical for most of us but overall the book was worth reading. Read full review


A Look into the World of Social Engineering
Information Gathering
How to Become Anyone
Psychological Principles Used in Social Engineering
The Five Fundamentals of Influence and Persuasion
Controlling Your Target
Manipulation in Social Engineering

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About the author (2010)

Christopher Hadnagy is the lead developer of, the world's first social engineering framework. In more than 14 years of security and IT activity, he has partnered with the team at and worked on a wide variety of security projects. He also serves as trainer and lead social engineer for Offensive Security's penetration testing team.

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