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Submitted By: Bikramjit Sinha(51) Mukesh kumar Mishra(62) Rajiv Pathak(69) Shrey Singh Chauhan( Shantanu Roy

Pretexting is a form of social engineering in which an individual lies to obtain privileged data. A pretext is a false motive. Example - where the liar pretends to need information in order to confirm the identity of the person he is talking to. After establishing trust with the targeted individual, the pretexter might ask a series of questions designed to gather key individual identifiers such as confirmation of the individual's social security number, mother's maiden name, place or date of birth or account number.

On December 2007 attorney General of California announced that HP would pay $14.5 Billion to settle civil claims. The charges against HP was that it used unethical methods to find out how the confidential information had been leaked to press.

The trouble started when confidential information relation to company strategic decision, future Plans , negotiations terms with supplier find their way in to the newspaper. The company decided to get into Bottom of this matter and find out how the information was leaked therefore resorted to Pretexting.

Patrica dunn was incharge of the probe of the leaks.

She find out that one of the directors was responsible for this.
Some of the board members objected to the manner in which the investigation into the leaks were conducted. The conflict led to probe by several government agencies like SEC, attorney general of California.

The case led to formation of Pretexting law in California.

On January,2005 a detailed account of boardroom discussions made their ways in to the Wall Street Journal regarding the distribution of responsibilities in HP Top management. The board asked outside Counsel, Larry sonsini to investigate into the matter.

In February 2005 when Carly Fiorina was asked to leave the company within days the new York times published the details that of the meeting that led to fiorina exit from the company. Patrica dunn was made the non-executive chairperson at the same time and requested to identify the source of leaks.

Matters became serious when confidential information regarding HP news CEO and long terms strategy discussed in annual general meeting was leaked to the press. The above confidential information was accessible only to board of directors only.

Patrica Dunn considered that the leaks were series threat to commercial relationship, acquisition, company images and trust among members and HP way.