22 December 2011 | 10,550 views

Social Engineering Vulnerability Evaluation and Recommendation Project

Don't let your data go over to the Dark Side!

Social engineering has been around for tens of thousands of years so it is time we approach the topic in a professional manner. The Social Engineering Vulnerability Evaluation and Recommendation (SEVER) Project is one way to help penetration testers become more consistent. It is also intended to be the best way to teach novices about social engineering concepts.

By distilling thousands of pages of theory into a simple form the SEVER project hopes to:

  1. Provide the fastest means of training novices about complex social engineering concepts.
  2. Provide penetration testers with a methodology that minimizes their effort while increasing their chance of success.

You will begin by defining requirements, then brainstorm solutions, and then refine your solutions through multiple phases. Each phase increases in detail, allowing you to identify ‘show stoppers’ as soon as possible. This will help you avoid wasting time working on a plan that is not going to succeed. If an idea makes it through the entire process and you still feel good about it then you should have a very high chance of success.

The best format for this content would be an electronic form with a lot of context-sensitive notes. But since there is currently no effective, portable way of accomplishing that I decided to split the content into two PDF files – the SEVER Worksheet and the SEVER Instructions. Go through these instructions while you fill out the form until you have a thorough understanding of how the form works. If you cheat and try to do one before the other (or skip the instructions altogether) you will miss things which will make failure far more likely.

You can download both papers here:


Or read more here.


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One Response to “Social Engineering Vulnerability Evaluation and Recommendation Project”

  1. N 24 January 2012 at 2:31 pm Permalink

    I presume you didn’t actually read the Instructions document?