In today's world, connectivity is everything. Whether it's accessing the internet, using a Wi-Fi network, or getting into a secure building, we all depend on secure access. Unfortunately, there are many ways that unauthorized users can gain access to these systems, one of which is through piggybacking. Piggybacking is a term used to describe the unauthorized access of a secure network or building by following closely behind an authorized user. In this article, we will explore what piggybacking is, how it works, the differences between piggybacking and tailgating, examples of piggybacking, and how to prevent it.
What is Piggybacking?
Piggybacking is the act of gaining unauthorized access to a secure area or network by following an authorized person who is authorized to enter. This is done by either physically following the authorized person or by accessing their credentials, such as an access card or a password. Piggybacking is a common tactic used by hackers and other unauthorized individuals to gain access to restricted areas or networks.
How does Piggybacking Work?
Piggybacking works by exploiting the trust that people have in others. An unauthorized individual will wait near a secure entry point, such as a door or gate, and then follow closely behind an authorized person as they enter. This allows the unauthorized individual to gain access to the secure area without needing their own credentials. In some cases, piggybacking may also involve using stolen or fake credentials to gain access to the secure area.
Piggybacking and Bandwidth
Piggybacking can also be a problem when it comes to bandwidth usage. In this context, piggybacking refers to the act of using someone else's Wi-Fi network without their permission. This is usually done by locating a nearby Wi-Fi network and then connecting to it without the owner's knowledge or consent. This can slow down the owner's internet speed and potentially lead to security breaches.
Differences between Piggybacking and Tailgating
While piggybacking and tailgating may seem similar, they are actually two different concepts. Tailgating refers to the act of following closely behind a person through a secure entry point without their knowledge or consent. This is different from piggybacking, which involves following an authorized person who is entering a secure area. Tailgating is usually done to gain physical access to a building, while piggybacking is usually done to gain access to a network or secure area.
Examples of Piggybacking
One example of piggybacking is when an unauthorized individual follows an employee into a secure area, such as a server room, without their knowledge or consent. Once inside, the unauthorized individual can then access the sensitive information stored within. Another example is when an unauthorized individual gains access to a secured Wi-Fi network by using a stolen or fake access code.
Piggybacking Security: How to Prevent Piggybacking Attacks
There are several steps that can be taken to prevent piggybacking attacks. One of the most important steps is to educate employees and other authorized individuals on the importance of not allowing others to follow them into secure areas. This can be done through training programs and by reminding employees to always be aware of their surroundings.
Another way to prevent piggybacking attacks is by implementing security measures, such as access controls and security cameras. Access controls can limit access to certain areas and require credentials to enter, while security cameras can monitor activity and alert security personnel to potential threats.
Additionally, using two-factor authentication can prevent unauthorized access to networks and other secure areas. Two-factor authentication requires two forms of identification, such as a password and a fingerprint.