By sensitizing your employees to cybersecurity, you can minimize human errors and reinforce your company’s security in the face of increasingly frequent and sophisticated threats. Employees can inadvertently become […]
How do you raise awareness among your employees about cybersecurity?
By sensitizing your employees to cybersecurity, you can minimize human errors and reinforce your company's security in the face of increasingly frequent and sophisticated threats.
Employees can inadvertently become a source of incidents or system vulnerabilities due to their lack of knowledge and vigilance.
In practical terms, cybersecurity awareness can empower employees to understand the risks associated with information security, recognize the signs of cyber-attacks, adopt best practices in cybersecurity, and act responsibly to protect the company's data and systems.
This article covers the following topics :
Outdated awareness methods
Numerous methods have been employed to raise employees' awareness about cybersecurity but often fail to deliver meaningful results.
For instance, internal newsletters are often lengthy and get lost amid the barrage of received emails. They lack attractiveness and interactivity and risk employees missing crucial information or failing to assimilate it.
Similarly, one-time emails and training sessions do not foster a lasting internal culture of information security, nor do they effectively raise alertness.
Lastly, relying solely on an IT charter to set rules is inadequate. Frequently seen as a mere administrative formality, an IT charter lacks advisory elements, remains static over time, and is often perceived as overly rigid by employees.
3 steps to sensitize your employees to cybersecurity
1) Continuous Training
Interactive training sessions
Regular workshops are essential for providing comprehensive training. These may include presentations, hands-on exercises, and e-learning modules to help employees understand cybersecurity risks, learn the best practices to avoid them and become proficient in identifying and reporting potential threats. This may involve topics such as creating strong passwords and regularly updating software.
E-learning modules can take various forms, such as videos, quizzes, and simulations. By incorporating interactive elements like games or challenges, e-learning can make the training more engaging and memorable.
Furthermore, interactive e-learning allows for measuring the training outcomes. Companies can track employees' progress and identify areas where improvements are needed.
These workshops must be regular and recurrent. Cybersecurity risks are constantly evolving, necessitating ongoing updates to reflect the latest trends in cybercrime.
SIMULATED PHISHING EXERCISES
Simulated phishing campaigns are becoming increasingly popular for effectively sensitizing employees to cybersecurity. These campaigns involve sending fake phishing emails to employees to test their vigilance and ability to recognize phishing attempts. These emails may contain suspicious links, malicious attachments, or requests for personal information. Several options are available to companies, with organizations providing such campaigns or easy-to-use online tools readily accessible.
These campaigns aim to raise employees' awareness about the dangers of phishing emails and encourage them to adopt appropriate cybersecurity behaviors.
The results of these campaigns can help identify employees who may require additional cybersecurity training.
It is crucial to conduct simulated phishing campaigns ethically and transparently. Employees should be informed before the campaign's launch, and the results should not be used for punitive purposes.
2) Raising Daily Awareness
Raising awareness about cybersecurity is crucial and should be seen as an ongoing, daily process tailored to the needs and interests of each employee and company. Several tools can help sensitize your team members to cybersecurity daily by providing reminders of best practices and communicating new information related to the company's information security:
Wallpapers and lock screens
Wallpapers and lock screens serve as perfect internal communication channels, often overlooked. They are screens that all computer users can see multiple times a day. Utilizing them to disseminate recurring messages can be highly effective. Updating them can be easily accomplished through an internal communication tool.
These channels can be valuable in raising employees' cybersecurity awareness by displaying key messages related to information security. These messages may include security tips, reminders of the company's security policies, and information about current security risks.
Notifications on workstations
Notifications can be used to remind employees of actions related to information security, such as the need to update their session passwords. Notifications delivered through internal communication software can also inform employees about new security threats and the measures to safeguard against them. These notifications can include clickable links to direct employees to dedicated cybersecurity resources or surveys.
Include clickable links
Customize visualsand text
Target the right employees
Deliver at the opportune moment
Digital signage displays
Consider utilizing dynamic display screens to deliver clear and concise messages to everyone regarding the rules to follow when using computer systems. Eye-catching images and videos will make your communications more impactful for your employees. Regularly adapt them to reflect the latest developments in cybersecurity. Easily broadcast them through dynamic display software in strategic locations such as open spaces and break rooms, where employees will likely see them regularly.
3) Alerting at the Right Moment
Alerts are a critical step in your cybersecurity action plan as they enable the immediate reporting of security incidents, allowing for swift and appropriate responses.
While email alerts are currently less effective, internal communication tools and alert software exist to notify employees on their workstations in an unmissable manner directly. These alerts appear in the middle of the screen, blocking ongoing activities. This channel is best used urgently to ensure no one overlooks the message. It is particularly useful for disseminating instructions that must be immediately implemented, such as disconnecting from the internet, closing email accounts, or refraining from opening received files during an attack.
Moreover, it is possible and beneficial to reinforce these alerts with specific messages on your internal communication screens. As mentioned, dynamic display solutions allow you to pre-prepare various anticipated alert messages that will only be broadcast when needed. These screens are especially useful for keeping your employees informed about the evolving situation during an attack when they are requested not to access their emails for a specific period.
Personalize your messages
Target your communications
Deliver at the right moment
It is crucial to sensitize employees to cybersecurity to protect companies and individuals from cyber-attacks. Traditional tools like internal newsletters and IT charters often fail to inform employees effectively about cybersecurity. For effective awareness, it is essential to implement more engaging and impactful tools that are continuous and up-to-date. This can include dynamic displays, simulated phishing campaigns, interactive e-learning, and dedicated internal communication channels for emergencies. By adopting these tools, companies can strengthen their security posture and reduce the risk of cyber-attacks.