social engineering


Definition of social engineering

: management of human beings in accordance with their place and function in society : applied social science

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Other Words from social engineering

social engineer noun

Examples of social engineering in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web But both used social media platforms like Facebook as jumping off points to connect with targets and launch social engineering attacks to guide them toward phishing pages and other malicious websites. Lily Hay Newman, Wired, "Palestinian Hackers Tricked Victims Into Installing iOS Spyware," 21 Apr. 2021 The information could be used to initiate phishing and social engineering attacks. Chris Smith, BGR, "Clubhouse CEO contradicts hack reports, says user data was not leaked," 11 Apr. 2021 What does social engineering do to our inner lives? Sanjena Sathian, Time, "How the Pressure of the Model Minority Myth Restricts Our Imagination—and Our Freedom," 9 Apr. 2021 Hackers often use social engineering tactics to impersonate people online. John Brandon, Forbes, "The Worst Thing About That Huge Facebook Data Leak? There’s (Almost) Nothing You Can Do," 8 Apr. 2021 But Rachel Tobac, an ethical hacker who specializes in social engineering, said one of the biggest concerns around the vaccine card trend is that the information is visible all in one place and easy to access. Samantha Murphy Kelly, CNN, "Seriously, stop sharing your vaccine cards on social media," 18 Mar. 2021 First, there's a conservatism that dismisses any kind of support for families as presumptuous right-wing social engineering, an attempt to bribe people into changing their personal preferences and intimate decisions. Ross Douthat, Star Tribune, "Why the U.S. needs Mitt Romney's proposed reform for family benefits," 8 Feb. 2021 No single group has been in the crosshairs of this uncomfortable mix of technology and social engineering in China more than the ethnic Uighur Muslims who live in northwest Xinjiang province. Dina Temple-raston, Washington Post, "Surveillance, reeducation and the Office of Honesty: How China tames its people," 13 Nov. 2020 When another, higher-profile libertarian social engineering enterprise, the Free State Project, received national attention by promoting a mass influx to New Hampshire in general (as opposed to just Grafton), the Free Town Project’s fate was sealed. Patrick Blanchfield, The New Republic, "The Town That Went Feral," 13 Oct. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'social engineering.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of social engineering

1899, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for social engineering

Time Traveler

The first known use of social engineering was in 1899

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Statistics for social engineering

Last Updated

29 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Social engineering.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for social engineering

social engineering


English Language Learners Definition of social engineering

formal : the practice of making laws or using other methods to influence public opinion and solve social problems or improve social conditions

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