How to Implement a Cybersecurity Awareness Training Program

Did you know your employees are the biggest threat to your cybersecurity? Hackers target employees because they’re the most accessible entry point to your data. To make matters worse, employees are often unaware of cybersecurity threats targeting them. Many companies do not implement cybersecurity awareness programs for their employees, opening their business to cyber risk. The following steps will help you create a cybersecurity awareness program to protect your data.

Train Your Employees on What to Look For

One estimate claims over 80% of information security costs are related to employee errors. If you train your employees on what to watch out for, they’ll be more aware and less likely to fall into traps set by hackers. Even if you have state-of-the-art protections set up on your network, make sure you maintain your first line of defense, your employees, as well. An awareness program can be as simple as handing out some cybersecurity awareness brochures and printing off a few posters to hang up in the break room.

What to Include in Your Cybersecurity Awareness Program

An effective cybersecurity awareness program teaches employees how to spot potential phishing scams and attempts at social engineering. The cybersecurity awareness program also gives helpful advice on avoiding malware infections. Additionally, the program should cover ways employees can protect sensitive information from being exposed or stolen through an attack. The following list should be considered when choosing your program:

  • Training against phishing attacks
  • Training against malware attacks
  • Training on what employees should do if they believe they are victim to an attack
  • Tips on how employees can retain cybersecurity in their everyday workflow

Cybersecurity training and awareness programs only work if they are completed consistently. We recommend implementing a continuous program within your organization. It is important to remember attacks and methods of compromise constantly change, so your program needs to keep employees updated on what’s going on in cybersecurity.

Using an online program makes the management of your program easy. The online program will automatically update to the latest threats employees should be aware of. Additionally, if you have an awareness program in place, you may qualify for a discount on your liability and cyber insurance policies.

Don’t Wait! Implement Your Program As Soon As Possible.

If you start cybersecurity training early enough, it will become second nature to your employees, and they’ll take cybersecurity more seriously than ever before. They’ll be able to identify malicious emails and websites because they would have seen so many cybersecurity messages over the years that cybersecurity awareness has become a part of their lives.

Cybersecurity Training is an investment that every business should make. In today’s world, hackers try to gain access to businesses’ computer networks almost every day. Therefore, companies must invest early to get the maximum return on investment for their business.

Even if you’re sure your business is secure, you can’t discount the impact a cyber attack would have on your customers’ trust and loyalty. Remember, not only is a cybersecurity awareness program great for reducing your risk, it is a tremendous competitive advantage over your competition.

If you have questions regarding cybersecurity training programs or how to start your own employee training, please contact the AZ Cybersecurity Team.

This article was written by Jason Schaller, Director of Security Services in our Helena office.

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