Passive Reconnaissance

(pas iv ri-kon &-zents) (n.) The process of collecting information about an intended target of a malicious hack without the target knowing what is occurring. Typical passive reconnaissance can include physical observation of an enterprise’s building, sorting through discarded computer equipment in an attempt to find equipment that contains data or discarded paper with usernames and passwords, eavesdropping on employee conversations, researching the target through common Internet tools such as Whois, impersonating an employee in an attempt to collect information, and packet sniffing.

Compare with active reconnaissance.

Webopedia Staff
Since 1995, more than 100 tech experts and researchers have kept Webopedia’s definitions, articles, and study guides up to date. For more information on current editorial staff, please visit our About page.

Top Articles

The Complete List of 1500+ Common Text Abbreviations & Acronyms

From A3 to ZZZ we list 1,559 SMS, online chat, and text abbreviations to help you translate and understand today's texting lingo. Includes Top...

Windows Operating System History & Versions

The Windows operating system (Windows OS) refers to a family of operating systems developed by Microsoft Corporation. We look at the history of Windows...

How to Create a Website Shortcut on Your Desktop

Website Shortcut on Your Desktop reviewed by Web Webster   This Webopedia guide will show you how to create a website shortcut on your desktop using...

Generations of Computers (1st to 5th)

Reviewed by Web Webster Learn about each of the 5 generations of computers and major technology developments that have led to the computing devices that...

Pardot

What is Pardot? Pardot is a B2B marketing automation (MA) solution by Salesforce that...

Veeam

Veeam Software is a global vendor...

Akamai

Akamai Technologies is a global web technology company specializing in content...