10 May Cyber Security Awareness Training is key to combat cyber attacks
Top 5 reasons why Cyber Awareness Training is key to combat cyber attacks.
Cyber awareness training is essential in every cyber security strategy, irrespective of the size of the organisation and the sector within which it operates. Cyber criminals and the hacking techniques they use are advancing (and at a rapid rate too!). There are absolutely no signs of slowing down and no one can say ‘we’re safe from cyber attacks’ as the sophistication and tenancy of cyber attacks is reaching new heights everyday.
Organisations can no longer depend on a firewall or antivirus (only) to safeguard their data, systems and stakeholders. Below we will take a look at the top 5 reasons why cyber awareness training is key to combating cyber attacks.
One click is all it takes
Having the best hardware and software is not enough – you can still be a vulnerable target for cyber attacks. A phishing email disguised as an Amazon confirmation is all it takes to compromise your whole system or to get hackers inside your most valuable data sets.
Stopping such scam emails is not an option per se, but training your workforce to reduce the risk of experiencing such a breach is something which can be achieved. Employees are to be aware of what threats and risks exist and are to be empowered to take action when they suspect an email (or otherwise) is risky.
Having cyber security policies in place is a first step but is not enough. Shifting the organisational culture is not an easy feat, but safeguarding the organisation’s digital assets and sensitive information (increasingly!) requires cyber-security to be ingrained in the company’s culture.
Cyber security is not solely owned by the information security team or the IT department – but everyone plays a role in the organisational defenses. Training employees will aid in creating your strongest line of defense, precisely your employees.
Trust coming from your customers and keeping a solid confidence level, take years to build but can dissolve in a matter of hours if your organisation gets attacked. In addition, to the potential lack of trust resulting from a data breach, some customers may pursue lawsuits against the organisation, inflicting more and more damage, both from a financial and reputation perspective.
Training employees makes them educated and knowledgeable about security threats and risks and a good competence level of handling critical customer data is therefore achieved.
Stay in business
There have been instances where organisations were forced to close their doors for good following a cyber attack. Cyber attacks and security breaches are more often than not very expensive and have detrimental repercussions for businesses, in the form of:
- Loss of clients;
- business operational disruptions;
- reputational damage and adverse media coverage; and
- suspension or revocation of licences (in case of regulated businesses)
When cyber criminals get their hands on personally identifiable information (PII), organisations (usually) incur legal expenses linked to lawsuits filed by the affected stakeholders.
Human error is commonly the main weak link in an organisation and malicious actors know this! They socially engineer attacks to deceit employees to get inside organisations and steal data. Training is a cost-effective step to prepare employees for possible attacks. Intellectual property cyber theft is another growing area wherein the results can be devastating leading a company to bankruptcy.
Increase employees’ confidence and productivity
An organisation is as good as its people. By investing in educating employees, their confidence levels are bolstered leading to better productivity. Cyber awareness training helps employees recognise hard-to-spot phishing emails and other attacks. Anxiety and stress levels will be reduced and job satisfaction rates increase. Breaches and attacks are expensive and training can be a wise investment that helps you save money, by avoiding loss of market share through loss of clients, lawsuits, reputational damage and compromised data.
The vast majority of cyber attacks exploit the human element, with the aid of creative and innovative phishing tactics and other attack vectors. Even if the organisation has a robust cyber security infrastructure in place, the absence of cyber security awareness among the workforce can leave a serious gap in the cyber security framework.
Check out our cyber security awareness training which will help you: prevent socially engineered cyber attacks, create a cyber resilient workforce and organisational culture which indirectly maintains clients’ trust and confidence and save money.