Your employees are your number one cyber-security threat. A sad fact, but true.
They’re often the main gateway through which hackers try to worm their way into your business. After all, it only takes one click on one wrong link in an email, for cyber-criminals to get in.
But your staff can also be your best protection against threats.
Turning your team from a security risk into your most important line of defense isn’t as difficult as you may think.
The most important step is to train them all properly. Cyber-security training, whether it’s delivered through an e-learning module or face-to-face session, should be a compulsory part of their onboarding process – with ongoing training and refreshers.
Building a culture of awareness and vigilance is one of the best things you can do to protect your business.
For example, educating staff on the risks of opening suspicious email attachments will make them pause and think twice before opening emails they’re not 100% sure about. It can also be useful to share details about attempted attacks so they can see the risks are real, ongoing, and what they look like.
It’s also a good idea to write a formal information security policy that all employees need to read and sign. This should set out, in clear and direct terms:
- Best practice
- What needs to be avoided
- And the procedures employees need to follow to reduce data security risks.
Your policy should also explain what actions people need to take if they suspect there’s been a cyber-security incident.
It’s key to act fast and make the right people aware the moment anything suspicious happens. Steps can then be taken to reduce the risk of a serious incident developing by fixing gaps in your systems, or making other employees aware of an emerging threat.
This can be especially important if criminals are targeting individuals by impersonating somebody known to the business, like a senior manager or a major supplier. Attacks like this have a nasty habit of hitting several people at the same time with similar techniques.