Social Engineering

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In Short

  • The 2nd iteration of the current form of the course will be held during the first half of the Spring term 2024, from February 1 to March 22.
  • The aim of this course is to provide students with basic knowledge of social engineering and human-based cyberattacks (see the ICS0018 Course Guide for details). The course is held by the IT College of Tallinn University of Technology and is primarily meant for students of Cyber Security Engineering, but other students interested in the human side of cybersecurity can also benefit from it.
  • The course can be held in contact or e-learning mode (and possibly some hybrid way as well). Due to visiting students from EuroTEQ, the Spring 2024 run is again a full e-course (see the guide for details).
  • Course code: ICS0018
  • Lecturers: Kaido Kikkas (lectures, CotW seminars and overall coordination; User:Kaido.kikkas, ETIS) and Kristjan Karmo (hands-on seminars; User:Krkarm, LinkedIn).
  • Programme: at the Study Information System - unfortunately, it only shows the Estonian version, an English-language programme is available here (note: unchanged from the previous year).
  • Volume: 3 ECTS credit points
  • Grading: Pass/fail

Course Information


  • Feb 29: The first version of the course table is up (the URL was given in this week's classes). As there is a small problem with attendance, a special message will be sent to participants via ÕIS (Study Information System). The table information will also be in the message.
  • Feb 8: Just a small note on lecture chats - please do not ask course-related questions in the middle of the chat, they risk getting lost in the traffic. The next lectures will have a short Q&A session at the beginning, but it would be the safest to ask course-related questions directly from the lecturers (either via e-mail or MS Teams).
  • Feb 1: The course kick-off (first lecture, including course intro) will take place on Thursday, Feb 1 at 10.00 (10AM) Tallinn time (NB! 9.00 in Central Europe!) in the MS Teams environment of the university. The participation invitations will be delivered to all students whose Uni-ID is registered shortly before the event.

Topics, Materials and Notes

Lecture materials will be published here either shortly before or after every lecture.

  • WEEK 1: Course intro + some main concepts of SE. Lecture slides: ODP, PDF
  • WEEK 2: Information gathering. Lecture slides: ODP, PDF
  • WEEK 3: Elicitation. Lecture slides: ODP, PDF
  • WEEK 4: Pretexting. Lecture slides: ODP, PDF
  • WEEK 5: Psychology. Lecture slides: ODP, PDF
  • WEEK 6: Influence and persuasion. Lecture slides: ODP, PDF
  • WEEK 7: The Way of the Ninja. Lecture slides: ODP, PDF
  • WEEK 8: Prevention and mitigation. Lecture slides: ODP, PDF

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Q: Where can I find information about the course (tasks, grading etc)?
  • A: from the Course Guide
  • ...