It’s often said that people are the weakest link when it comes to information security, but how do you go about turning your employees from the weakest link into a human firewall that becomes your business’s best line of defense against cyberthreats?
The best technology will certainly help you keep your confidential business data safe, but it’s only ever going to be as effective as the people responsible for maintaining it. For this reason, among others, security awareness training should become an integral part of your onboarding and ongoing staff training program.
Getting Everyone Involved
A common mistake many organizations make is thinking that cybersecurity is only for the IT department to worry about. However, every connected device and every user behind that device is a potential target for hackers.
Everyone on your team should be involved in your security strategy.
Awareness training helps solidify your information security efforts and create a culture of accountability where employees know whom to report to whenever a suspicious activity takes place. Also, when people are equipped with the knowledge they need to adhere to your security standards, they’ll be better positioned to relate to new security controls.
Armed with the knowledge they need to operate your systems responsibly and within the rules laid out by your security and usage policy, all your employees will be better equipped to detect security incidents before they have a chance to wreak havoc on your company.
While security awareness might not make your organization any less of an appetizing target for cybercriminals, the ability to respond to attacks quickly and report to the right person translates into a greatly reduced impact. Additionally, with reduced detection times, your team will be able to identify most threats before they can even make it past your firewall.
Aside from the more obvious benefits of security awareness training, there’s also the fact that a lot of data is protected by government-mandated compliance regulations.
Some examples include patient health information (PHI) and payment information. If employees are uninformed and liable to mishandle confidential data, then your whole company could be at risk of litigation. That’s why many jurisdictions have stringent compliance measures in place that govern the handling of confidential information, and not just the technological solutions in place to protect said information.
With a robust training program, you’ll also have evidence of your compliance efforts.
New Threats, New Challenges
Technology is moving forward at an unprecedented rate, but with every innovation comes a new set of threats that organizations must meet head on before they have a chance to take them by surprise.
For example, just a few years ago, almost nobody had heard of phishing scams. According to the Anti-Phishing Working Group, there were a total of 173,000 unique phishing reports back in 2005, growing to almost 1.4 million last year.
In other words, the cyberthreat landscape is constantly evolving and expanding by taking advantage of a wider range of vulnerabilities and devices. Your organization needs to stay one step ahead if it wants to avoid falling victim to a catastrophic data breach.
A one-off training program delivered as part of the onboarding process for new staff is simply not enough.
Companies need a way to achieve lasting awareness among their employees so that they’re able to identify new threats before those threats even become widely known to the public. Given the increasing reliance on the internet both at home and in workplaces, you’ll be doing your employees an enormous favor as well, since you’ll be equipping them with the knowledge they need to live and work safely in a connected world. That way, your company will also be ready with the security measures it needs to thrive in an increasingly digital society.
Here at Dyrand, we take a proactive approach toward technological innovation and cybersecurity. We offer cyber security training for all our clients. If you’re ready to transform your company culture by adopting the latest technology, give us a call today.