A Gender-Based Analysis of Online Social Engineering Awareness Among University Students

Background: Students are potential victims of cybercrime attacks due to their dominant online presence. This descriptive study was aimed at identifying a gendered awareness difference towards Online Social Engineering.

Methods: The research instrument was approved, and an 83-item close-ended questionnaire was manually distributed to Pietermaritzburg students of the University of KwaZulu-Natal and uMgungundlovu FET College. The data was analysed using descriptive statistics.

Results: A total of 361 students completed the survey. More percentages of male students showed social engineering awareness as compared to their female counterparts.

Conclusion: A gendered approach is needed to provide cybercrime awareness to students. Universities also need a continuous mechanism to assist in evaluating student’s cybercrime awareness knowledge as well as educating students about the prevalent online attacks. This is to address a gendered lack of cybercrime awareness amongst students.

Ngwane and Maharaj