Guest Contributor

Crucial learning points for building security awareness within your team

By | Nora Van Damme

Due to the higher percentage of online threats and attacks (like ransomware, phishing, and botnets) that are happening on a global scale, companies should be more aware and considerate of how to prevent and protect their business.

It is interesting that currently, hackers and criminal organizations are more focused on hacking smaller companies. A 50% increase in weekly cyberattacks on businesses has been recorded in the last few years.

Data breaches can jeopardize a business’s processes. Forbes’s report records that data breaches have caused reputational damage for about 46% of companies, and security breaches by third parties caused brand image damage for about 19% of companies.

That is why companies should have to learn more about cyber security and build security awareness within their teams. 

  • # Some of the most common Internet Threats

  • Phishing

With the high frequency of daily emails which every company handles, the employees should be cautious. Some of them can be an online attempt to obtain confidential or personal information.

Phishing is usually done by hackers who are  impersonating some legal or well-known organizations, by sending emails or chat messages. Those emails contain links which may lead to a malicious websites, or attachments from which malwares are installed to your PC, which can be used for stealing or deleting your data.

  • Ransomware

Once the malware is installed on your PC, it encrypts your data and prompts you with a message that you need to pay a ransom to retrieve your data back. Of course, even if you pay the ransom, nobody guarantees that you will get your data back.

Only in the past year, 61% of respondents to an annual State of Email Security survey said they had experienced ransomware, attack, while 52 % of those respondents, paid for the ransomware, but over a third never recovered their data. 

  • Information security

Information security represents a practice of preventing unauthorized access, use, inspection, interference, recording, or destruction of information. 

Here is essential that employees understand the importance of exclusive information, and that company data should be taken very seriously, so employees should be well informed about the information protection policy.

  • Password threats

One of the first lines of business security is password protection. It is an integral part of the online account and there is a high risk of hacking and password reuse, especially when the same password is reused on multiple accounts or between personal and business accounts, and also can be exposed through a data breach. 

Here is most important that employees understand the importance of creating a strong password and improving password protection, and how to level up password protection by turning on two-factor or multi-factor authentication (2FA / MFA).

  • Social engineering

  1. Social engineering is an act of malicious activities, accomplished through some social interaction, in which a can be manipulated and used to get sensitive information or a company’s procedures.

The tips that can improve vigilance and protect from social engineering:

  • protect the account security by using multifactor authentication
  • be wary of dubious offers
  • do not open emails and links and attachments from strange sources
  • keep the antivirus software updated
  • # A guide to building a strategy for your own security awareness program

  1. All these threats happen every day and the victim can be anyone, even an IT professional, but usually, it is an employee who is not familiar with IT technology.
  2. There comes the importance of building a strategy for the security awareness program.

As one of the best solutions here is to Outsource an IT security company.

These organizations have a focused approach to a specific area of expertise and provide a complete security audit and security solutions.

The Security Awareness training contains a basic and advanced part.

The goal of the Basic training is to learn employees how to recognize malicious and phishing emails, data leaks, password security, as well as exchanging information online, physical security, and similar.

A different cyber risk may affect the finance department than the technical, or sales department. Advanced security training give a more specified approach, focused on the specific department, adjusted to the company’s specific needs.

  • At the end of this course employees will be able to:
  • give concrete examples of the different aspects concerning IT-security
  • choose a strong and safe password
  • more quickly identify false emails and websites
  • understand social engineering
  • put measures into practice to prevent the loss of data
  • understand how to securely visit websites
  • secure personal devices
  • # Summary

  1. Due to rapid and constant changes in the global market nowadays, companies are concerned about their cyber security and are willing to take precautions.

Safety awareness training is one of the most important educational measures, and with the outsourcing of an IT services, employees can gain education with not only a basic of these security topics but also an understanding of how to use critical thinking and recognize and prevent potential risks.

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