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How to train your staff on cybersecurity      

Companies should conduct cybersecurity awareness training regularly.

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The typical modern organization stores vast amounts of data to facilitate its daily operations. With the rise in cyber-criminal activity, keeping your business data safe is now more critical than ever. One way of ensuring the safety of your data is by educating your staff on cybersecurity

According to a Kaspersky Lab study, over 60% of businesses worldwide invest in training programs for their employees. With the rise in cybercrime and data losses, companies need to invest in cybersecurity training.

Humans are the weakest link and the most significant problem with regards to cybersecurity. This is because humans are prone to mistakes. However, some errors are unacceptable. Careless mistakes like opening strange email attachments, following suspicious links, and using weak passwords result from a lack of security awareness and training.

Where To Begin

The first step towards reducing cybersecurity mistakes is talking to your employees about cybersecurity. You need to develop a cyber-security framework. Make sure your employees are familiar with this framework. Your training on cybersecurity should focus primarily on your organization’s cybersecurity frameworks.

A cybersecurity framework is simply a series of documents that define the practices that a business should follow to address cybersecurity risks. These frameworks minimize a business’s exposure to vulnerabilities. Since companies face the threat of cybercriminals daily, a cyber-security framework ensures that their systems and data are secure. This is a plan that helps a company protect its information systems and infrastructure.

The proper application of cybersecurity frameworks ensures IT security staff can manage a company’s cyber risk more efficiently. The rest of the company staff can also identify threats and report them or avert them before they cause serious damages. A company can use an existing cybersecurity framework or develop its own.

Some businesses are required to adopt existing cybersecurity frameworks to comply with government regulations. For example, a company that deals with credit card transactions must show that it complies with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI-DSS) framework. Other organizations have the option of adopting specific cybersecurity frameworks voluntarily.

  1. Faux Phishing Attacks

According to a report by the Verizon 2016 data breach investigations report, up to 30% of data breaches result from employee negligence, like opening infected emails. One useful approach to training your employees is the faux phishing attack. With this method, you can train your employees to identify and handle emails containing dangerous attachments and links. Staff members will be able to identify malware-loaded communications and phishing attempts.

  1. Strong Passwords

Your cybersecurity training should involve classes on using strong passwords. Verizon’s report further claims that 63% of data leakages result from stolen or weak passwords. You should insist your staff to use complicated passwords that combine numbers and upper- and lower-case letters. 

  1. Social Engineering Attacks

Social engineering is a technique used by cybercriminals to breach computer systems and steal sensitive information. This is one of the leading cybersecurity threats because it is based on human weaknesses. Employees need to understand the different methods used in social engineering and how to avoid being victimized. Therefore, your training should involve educating your staff on the danger of emails and phone calls from third-parties who pretend to know you to steal confidential information.

  1. All Employees Should Be Involved

It’s essential to train all personnel on cybersecurity threats. This is because even the well-trained cybersecurity specialists make mistakes. Therefore, the training should be dispatched to CEOs, CISOs, IT professionals, and top managers. Managers are the most vulnerable because they’ve access to confidential data. Hackers also target IT staff because they’ve access to corporate resources and networks.

  1. Perform Regular Assessments And Testing

Training requires assessment and analysis. Therefore, make sure you test your staff regularly. This will help you determine their skills and knowledge level to identify any gaps. For example, when testing your employees on fake phishing attacks, you’ll be able to see how many people click on suspicious links. Those who fail your tests should undergo additional training and workshops to hone their skills.

  1. Ongoing Training

Training on cybersecurity should be performed regularly to keep up with modern cybercriminal techniques and trends. You should informed your employees on new security threats as they evolve. A helpful way to keep your employees updated on cybersecurity threats is by sending them bulletins and emails with security tips, reminders, and technical advice and solutions to identify and handle cyber risks.

In Conclusion

Companies should conduct cybersecurity awareness training regularly. It’s important to include practical examples in your training sessions to sensitize your employees about the most common vulnerabilities and security threats. It would help if you made your employees understand the consequences of carelessness, ignorance, and unwillingness to learn about cybersecurity threats. 

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Chris has been blogging since the early days of the internet. He primarily focuses on topics related to tech, business, marketing, and pretty much anything else that revolves around tech. When he's not writing, you can find him noodling around on a guitar or cooking up a mean storm for friends and family.

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