Often overlooked until it’s too late, there is a growing case for progressive companies to adopt a level of cyber security training. As companies already carry out regular fire risk assessments and first aid training, cyber security training is fast rising up the ranks of a must have for forward thinking organisations.
There are many practical and technical solutions that can be put in place to help businesses reduce the risk of a cyber attack. However, one of the most important and yet often overlooked ways to reduce the risk, is by raising awareness of the possible threats amongst employees.
With the global pandemic forcing businesses into remote working, it was unsurprising that 2020 saw an increase in businesses falling victim to cyber security breaches, with home internet networks not providing the same level of protection as business infrastructures.
As workforces are starting their return to the office, hybrid working still has a solid foundation amongst businesses, so we’ve shared some insight into what cyber security training is, and how your business could benefit from it.
What is cyber security awareness training?
An increasing number of companies are investing in cyber security awareness training as part of their cyber security strategy, in order to help increase awareness amongst their employees.
The purpose of cyber security awareness training is to educate employees to protect both their personal information and that of the business, online. With hackers becoming increasingly sophisticated in their attacks, it’s important to have regular training in place to ensure that employees are well informed of the possible risks.
One third of businesses (33%) have taken no action since their most disruptive cyber security breach.Official Statistics Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2020
Who should be involved in company wide cyber security training?
Ideally, all employees need to have a level of cyber security training under their belts. If employees aren’t able to recognise a possible security threat, businesses can’t expect them to avoid it.
Whether you have an in-house team, or you outsource your IT services, it is important to provide some level of training to all of your employees to minimise the risk of a cyber breach.
How does cyber security training work?
Cyber security training can come in many formats. While there are basic aspects that should be raised and covered (for example; enforcing password policies, running a phishing campaign and providing training based on the results), training programmes for SMEs should ideally be bespoke for each organisation.
Some examples of cyber security training could include:
One of the simplest yet most effective ways to raise awareness is to set up a fake phishing email scenario. In this training programme, we can run a one off campaign in which we send example phishing emails around the workforce to see whether employees fall for the “scam” email.
The aim isn’t for employees to be caught out on purpose – but to raise awareness of what they should be looking out for and how to spot a potential phishing email. With the sophistication of phishing emails, it is possible that this training programme does mean employees might be caught off guard! But that’s the benefit of this training, making them aware of what signs to look out for in future.
With security breaches becoming more sophisticated, some businesses find it beneficial to have regular cyber security training in place. Depending on your business and needs, this could be annual, twice yearly or on a more ad-hoc basis.
The main benefit of regular security training is to ensure that new employees are up to speed, as well as ensuring that old employees haven’t become relaxed and are still fully aware of the possible risks.
Is cyber security training beneficial?
While it’s impossible to guarantee that your business won’t fall victim to a cyber attack, educating employees on what to be aware of can only help to reduce the chance of a cyber breach.
96% of respondents agreed that a greater level of awareness over Cyber Security threats contributed to overall improvements in their defencesLucy Security
We have seen from experience how beneficial cyber security training can be in reducing the risk of attack. On the first phishing simulation with a client, 67% of employees fell victim to the simulated attack.
After several training sessions with all employees across the organisation, we ran a second simulation 6 months later. Astoundingly, only 19% of employees felt victim to the second simulated attack.
For more information or to discuss a cyber security training programme for your business, feel free to contact our friendly team of IT experts.