DiscoverEasy PreySocial Engineering and Pick-Pocketing with Chris Kirsch
Social Engineering and Pick-Pocketing with Chris Kirsch

Social Engineering and Pick-Pocketing with Chris Kirsch

Update: 2021-09-01


Gifted pick-pocketers can use social engineering skills to choose their victims. Many times as we travel, we may not realize that our body language makes us an easy target. 

Today’s guest is Chris Kirsch. Chris is the CRO and co-founder of Rumble. With a background in product marketing and technical mindset, he has helped formulate go-to marketing strategies at PGP, Rapid7, and Veracode. In 2017, he earned the black badge for winning the social engineering capture the flag competition at DEFCON. He has a passion for InfoSec, OSINT, and is a volunteer advisor for the National Child Protection Task Force.

Show Notes:

  • [1:05 ] - Welcome Chris! Chris shares his background.
  • [2:20 ] - Chris co-founded Rumble, an asset discovery company to help clients secure their network.
  • [3:48 ] - Pick-pocketers are masters of misdirection.
  • [6:34 ] - Chris explains why he got into the social engineering side of DEFCON.
  • [8:18 ] - When in Paris, Chris’s father was pick-pocketed which prompted him to start researching.
  • [11:18 ] - After meeting a magician at a convention, Chris then became interested in open-source intelligence (OSINT).
  • [11:51 ] - Chris defines the difference between the two schools of thought on pick-pocketing.
  • [13:29 ] - Some pick-pocketers can steal without interacting with people while others utilize social interactions.
  • [15:31 ] - Chris shares in more detail the story of his father being pick-pocketed.
  • [17:38 ] - This experience showed Chris and his family a way that teams of people can work together to fool a target.
  • [20:03 ] - There are some unusual laws that limit consequences for theft.
  • [21:50 ] - Chris shares tips on where to place your wallet when traveling and demonstrates a scenario.
  • [25:18 ] - Escalators are areas where pick-pocketing teams can be very successful.
  • [28:17 ] - Placing your hand in your pocket to intentionally keep your belongings safe might actually make you a target.
  • [30:31 ] - When something else is on your mind, you are an easy target. It is hard to always be aware.
  • [33:19 ] - Chris uses an example of a phishing scam that demonstrates social engineers move you from rational thinking to emotional.
  • [36:20 ] - Many people take these scams personally when in reality, scammers have no idea who you are.
  • [38:27 ] - Chris references a documentary from the point of view of a social engineering target.
  • [40:51 ] - Darren Brown on YouTube and Netflix has several videos and shows that demonstrate the psychology of many scams and manipulation.
  • [43:59 ] - The sample you are seeing is what the person wants you to see.
  • [45:12 ] - Chris gives actionable steps to take when feeling suspicious.
  • [47:09 ] - Chris describes a time when he was able to use social engineering strategies that would have been shot down if the target had done something simple.
  • [49:21 ] - For the “long con” scammers, Chris has advice about trust.
  • [51:42 ] - Search for Kirsch Identity Fraud and you find free resources on identity theft.

Thanks for joining us on Easy Prey. Be sure to subscribe to our podcast on iTunes and leave a nice review. 

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Social Engineering and Pick-Pocketing with Chris Kirsch

Social Engineering and Pick-Pocketing with Chris Kirsch

Easy Prey