Developing a solid security culture is an essential, but often overlooked, component of building a successful business. Cyber threats like ransomware, hacking, and social engineering can wreck your organization’s reputation, are extremely costly, and might possibly take it offline for good.
Even if you have excellent cybersecurity defenses in place, if employees aren’t taking their responsibilities seriously, a weak password or malicious link that gets clicked will put your organization at risk. While there’s no magic bullet that will instantly transform a poor security culture into a strong one, specific actions can be taken to move your team in the right direction.
Make Security Training Fun & Engaging
It’s no secret that people associate security training with boring lectures or someone saying “no” all the time. Organizations need to build fun and engagement into the training to create a solid security culture.
For example, instead of a monotonous voice-over on a PowerPoint presentation, create a security trivia game or have employees play hacker for a day and write a phishing email for the company. An engaging security awareness program and a continuous effort to improve the culture on an ongoing basis can help build awareness, understanding, and compliance. At Grand Technology Solutions, we have a knack for turning your run-of-the-mill training session into a fun and engaging team building day (gorilla masks might be involved).
Security issues are often caused by human error, but blaming or even punishing employees who make a mistake is not the answer. Instead of creating a culture of fear and blame, business owners should empower employees to take personal responsibility for their actions. For example, if an employee clicks an untrustworthy link or downloads an unauthorized app and steps forward immediately, use the opportunity to reward them for their honesty and offer training to avoid the mistake in the future.
To ensure employee training is being consumed and appropriately retained, you should perform regular tests as a best practice. For many companies, email is the primary method of communication. Unfortunately, email is also a minefield of phishing attacks. Luckily, there is a way to test your employees’ knowledge of and response to phishing attacks with a simulated phishing scam of your own. In a phishing test, the team of email security experts from GTS will craft a phishing scam that looks legit and send it out to your team and collect results. Once we see if your employees would fall victim to a cyberattack, we can recommend further security measures and training.
Look for opportunities to celebrate success and consider implementing a reward system for those who demonstrate positive security-related behaviors. For example, formally thank employees for specific security behaviors they have exhibited during a meeting or even reward a team member with cash or a gift for reporting a phishing email. Employees will remember and even tell their coworkers what they got for following security protocols, sending a positive message to the entire organization.
Developing a security culture won’t happen overnight. Communicating the importance of implementing stronger IT security habits takes time and effort, but the effort is well worth the alternative. If you are looking to implement a new security strategy or need help identifying where your defenses could be stronger, GTS can help! Give us a call today at (904) 606-6011 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.