Unsurprisingly, cybersecurity attacks on businesses have increased dramatically over the past couple of years. Despite deploying state-of-art security defensive mechanisms, businesses everywhere are suffering from many forms of digital attacks and there are many factors to blame. In addition to security experts reporting more than 4000 security attacks a day, it is even more concerning that digital security attacks increased to a colossal 400% just last year.
Cybersecurity culture within an organization means that the employees in a workplace are aware of the emerging cybersecurity risks and are making security-conscious decisions while handling personal and organizational data. The cybersecurity culture in a workplace also represents that the employees have a “security-first” mindset and are proactively learning and implementing the best security practices to minimize security risks to the business.
While the past year brought upon the pandemic of COVID-19, it also fueled the cybercrimes. According to experts, cybercrime increased 600% due to the pandemic - human mistakes and negligence are to blame. Experts report that as high as 95% of cybersecurity breaches are caused by human error. In other words, an unprepared workforce can actually expose a company to a wide range of digital threats and ultimately can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to the organization in recovery costs.
Employees that lack the appropriate cybersecurity education and training can expose your business to a host of security risks. Cybercriminals and hacktivist groups leverage sophisticated scams and powerful attack vectors to compromise organizational systems and trick the unsuspecting employees into giving away critical organizational data. Creating a cybersecurity culture within your organization can help you educate your employees and improve your overall organizational security posture. Here are the top five tips to get you started.
Employees play a critical role in making an organization’s workplace secure or exposing it to cybersecurity threats. The state of the cybersecurity infrastructure of an organization depends on how well both internal and external security risks are addressed and prepared for. A single mistake of an employee can compromise the whole organization’s security infrastructure. Investing in cybersecurity education and training programs for your employees can not only reduce the chances of a potential security breach arising from the mistakes of the employees, but will also help your workforce to learn the important skills to identify, contain, mitigate,and report potential threats.
Essential security practices like regular data backups, creating strong passwords, using 2-factor authentication, encrypting sensitive information, etc. goes a long way in protecting your organization from many cybersecurity risks. Encourage your employees to implement essential security measures to create a solid foundation of security culture.
A workplace with strict security policies and procedures in place is always more secure, efficient, and productive as compared to the one without proper policies and procedures to guide the workforce. Develop compact security policies that define and address appropriate security behaviors and procedures that are to be respected and implemented by all the employees without exception. Ensure every employee reads and understands these organizational security policies and implements them on daily basis. Creating rewards and sanctions for following or violating these security policies can also help.
There is no better way to ensure that your workplace is prepared against modern cybersecurity threats than to test them with real-world attack simulations. Companies throughout the world are testing their employees by using different tricking and phishing techniques to see how well the employees respond to such attacks and what steps they take to communicate the issue and to mitigate it. Testing your employees with some real-world cyber-attack simulations can point out the weak areas of your employees and will help you to improve them accordingly.
A very high amount of employees will open a suspicious email if they find it hard to communicate it with a superior. Communication is the key when it comes to effective threat handling and mitigation. Make channels of communication clear, simple, and accessible for everyone so any suspicious activity can be reported to the relevant team in a timely manner and without hesitation. Never criticize any of your employees for communicating any suspicious activity or incident that may turn out to be not a significant threat, as it may result in making them hesitant to communicate any malicious activity in the future that may turn out to be of great threat to the organizational assets.