Your Biggest Cybersecurity Risk: Your Employees

Cybercriminals work round the clock to detect and exploit vulnerabilities in a business’ network for nefarious gains. The only way to counter these hackers is by deploying a robust cybersecurity posture that’s built using comprehensive security solutions. However, while implementing these tools, there is a possibility you may overlook mitigating the weakest link in the fight against cybercriminalsyour employees.  

With remote work gaining traction and decentralized workspaces becoming the new norm, businesses must strengthen their cybersecurity strategies to counter human errors and data breaches perpetrated by malicious insiders.  All employees, irrespective of their designation/rank, can expose your business vulnerabilities to cybercriminals. 

Implementing routine security awareness training for employees can help you prevent a vulnerability from escalating into a disaster. As the first line of defense against cyberattacks,  it is imperative that your employees are thoroughly and regularly trained to identify and deflate potential cyberthreats.  Doing so can change your biggest cybersecurity risk, into your most effective cybersecurity asset.   

Why Employees Pose a Risk to Businesses? 

According to IBM’s Cost of a Data Breach Report 2020, 23 percent of data breaches in an organization occurred because of human error. An untrained employee can compromise a business’ security in multiple ways. Some of the most common errors committed by employees include 

  1. Falling for phishing scams: With the onset of COVID-19, hackers masquerading as the World Health Organization (WHO) tricked people into clicking on malicious links and sharing sensitive information. Cybercriminals are using improved techniques, like spoofed emails and text messages, to propagate the ongoing scam. Your employees must be well-trained to counter it. 
  1. Bad password hygiene: Some employees reuse the same password or a set of passwords for multiple accounts (business and personal).  A dangerous habit that allows cybercriminals to crack your business network security.  
  1. Misdelivery: Even slight carelessness can lead to an employee sending sensitive, business-critical information to a hacker inadvertently. Such an act can cause lasting damage to your business, which is why you must be prepared to counter it. 

The bottom line is that with cybercriminals upgrading their arsenal every day and exploring a plethora of options to trap your employees, security awareness training has become more important than ever before. 

Security Awareness Training: An Essential Investment 

A one-time training program will neither help your employees repel cyberthreats nor help your business develop a security culture. To deal with the growing threat landscape, your employees need thorough and regular security awareness training.  Much like learning a new language or improving your physical health, routine training and repetition are key to achieving success.   

By providing continual security awareness training to your employees, you are investing in their skill set in viewing and rejecting cyberattacks. The return on investment will be visible in the form of better decision-making employeesThese employees will efficiently respond in the face of adversity, saving your business from data breaches, damage to reputation and potentially expensive lawsuits 

Consider the following statistics highlight as to why you must deploy regular security awareness training and consider it a necessary investment:  

  • Eighty percent of organizations experience at least one compromised account threat per month. 1 
  • Sixty-seven percent of data breaches result from human error, credential theft or social attack. 2 
  • Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, phishing attacks have gone up by 67 percent. 3 

Expecting employees to train themselves on how to detect and respond to cyberthreats certainly is not the best way to deal with an everevolving threat landscape. By taking on the responsibility of providing regular training of their employees a business can ensure they are prepared to identify and ward off potential cyberattacks. Every employee must realize that even a minor mistake can snowball into a terrible security disaster for the company. Proper training can help them understand that a business’ cybersecurity is everyone’s responsibility.  

How can Summit Help? 

 Making all this happen will require continued effort and may seem like an uphill climb, but with the right partner by your side, you can easily integrate security awareness training into your business’ cybersecurity strategy. And the truth is, you can have the best hardware and software to prevent cyber theft, but if your staff is not trained, it is like opening the front door to cyber criminals. At Summit, we offer multiple Security Awareness Training options with different price points. Taking the first step towards training and empowering your employees starts with a conversation with us. Click on the Contact Us Now link below and schedule an appointment to go over the options we have available today. 

Article curated and used by permission. 

Sources: 

  1. McAfee Cloud Adoption & Risk Report 
  2. Verizon 2020 Data Breach Investigations Report 
  3. Security Magazine Verizon Data Breach Digest 

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