Cyber security training is an essential line of protection against cyber crime alongside technical defences, and security policies. 46% of UK businesses reportedly suffered a cyber security breach or attack last year. Yet, studies show that security-related risks are slashed by 70% when businesses invest in cyber security awareness training
Why is training so important? Here are five reasons to empower your people with the right security knowledge to protect your business:
• Educated Employees: Your First Line of Defence
Your employees can help you win the war against cyber crime. Educating your people gives them the knowledge and awareness to become your first line of defence, equipped to identify and react to threats as they happen.
Keep your staff up to speed with the latest across a range of security topics, from email best-practise and phishing to ransomware, password management, and physical security. Put security on the agenda for every employee and boost its profile by integrating into your corporate culture from the top down.
Too many companies expose themselves to unnecessary risk by failing to give security training the priority it deserves or misalign with their wider security measures. Surprisingly, only 45% of businesses in a Mimecast study made security training compulsory for all employees.
Companies willing to invest benefit from a ‘human firewall’ of educated staff to keep watch, stay one step ahead of attackers and minimise risk.
• Cut the Risk of Destructive Human Error
We all make mistakes. But human error in a cyber security context can have expensive consequences. One IBM study attributed 95% of all cyber security breaches to human slip-ups.
The fact is, even the most sophisticated AI-driven security solutions won’t stop your employees from unintentionally downloading a malware-infected attachment or clicking on a malicious link. Criminals see your people as soft targets. A convincing spear-phishing email can be created in minutes and research shows that 78% of employees will click on a suspicious link, even when they recognise the risk!
Educating your staff to take simple precautions makes a big difference. Train them to take responsibility for everyday tasks like managing their devices, protecting their passwords and securing their information. These small steps will significantly shrink your exposure to cyber attack.
• Meet Your Compliance Requirements
These days, compliance requirements for businesses are increasingly focused on employee training. Security regulations like HIPAA, PCI-DSS, and NIST 800-53 dictate not just the necessary policies, but also how understanding of these policies is disseminated throughout the organisation. Security is not a siloed issue confined to the IT department or senior management. Every contact and endpoint is a potential target for unscrupulous hackers. So, regulators see the importance of business-wide familiarity with security policies as well as data protection laws such as GDPR.
Security training is an effective way of communicating regulatory responsibilities to your staff and ensuring they follow the necessary codes of compliance. This delivers the double-win of protecting your business from cyberattack and avoiding the fines associated with regulatory non-compliance.
• Keep Your Customers’ Trust
Trust is hard to build and easy to lose. Data breaches can prove expensive, not just in terms of damaged infrastructure, lost downtime and costly remediation, but also blemished business credibility and reputation that can take years to restore.
Research shows that 88%* of UK consumers would be unlikely to buy from a company they don’t trust. 39% of people surveyed in the UK said they had already lost faith in at least one business due to a data breach and 63% of 16 to 24-year-olds had permanently stopped using a firm’s services following a breach.
Training your staff to be watchful and security-aware helps you to protect your business assets and the experience you deliver to your customers. That way you retain and grow your customers’ confidence in your brand.
*Okta Research 2021
• Stay One Step Ahead of Increasing Threat
Failing to prepare is preparing to fail, or so the saying goes. Worryingly, attacks are on the rise and today the threat landscape is more intense than ever. Every year, cyber crime becomes more frequent and destructive, driven by macro-trends like 5G roll-out, state-sponsored hacking, more DDoS attacks, IT/OT convergence and the global pandemic.
After the fallout of Covid-19, hybrid working is becoming the norm and 82%* of company leaders say they plan to allow their employees to work remotely at least some of the time. But criminals were quick to exploit the sudden shift from office to home working at the beginning of the pandemic. Since then, Barracuda Networks has reported a 667% rise in Covid-19 related email attacks.
With such a fast-moving threat environment, regular training is a great opportunity to update your people on the latest threats and increase preparedness. With such an uncertain future, it pays to stay one step ahead.
Invest in your human firewall by implementing an effective cyber security training strategy to protect your company’s finances and data.
Prevention First. Train Today. Protect Tomorrow.