Empowering Your Team: A Step-by-Step Guide to Enhancing Staff Security Awareness

Category: News
Published: 22nd April 2024

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Cyber threats are one of the biggest threats faced by UK businesses today. As tools such as AI lower the barrier to entry for cyber criminals, phishing attacks are on the rise and so the importance of staff security awareness cannot be overstated.

Employees play a critical role in safeguarding sensitive information and protecting organisational assets from cyber-attacks. Using resources provided by bodies like the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) and engaging with Managed Security Service Providers (MSSPs) like Red Helix will improve an organisations security capability dramatically, making them an unattractive target for cyber criminals.

To empower your team and strengthen your organisation’s security posture, follow these simple guidelines to improve staff security awareness:

  1. Assess Current Knowledge: Start by evaluating the current level of security awareness among your staff. Conduct surveys or quizzes to gauge their understanding of common security threats, best practices, and organisational policies. A good test is to send out a phishing email test to see how many of your staff members click on the link. This assessment will help identify areas for improvement and tailor your training efforts accordingly.
  2. Develop Tailored Training Materials: Based on the results of your assessment, develop customised training materials that address the specific needs and challenges faced by your organisation. Include practical examples, real-world scenarios, and interactive elements to engage employees and reinforce key concepts. Or outsource and contact a security company that specialises in cyber security training.
  3. Provide Regular Training Sessions: Schedule regular training sessions to educate employees about the latest security threats, trends, and best practices. Offer different formats such as in-person workshops, online courses, and informational videos to accommodate diverse learning preferences and to keep people engaged.
  4. Encourage a cyber conscious culture: Highlight the potential consequences of security breaches, such as financial loss, reputational damage, and legal implications. Encourage a culture of accountability and responsibility towards protecting sensitive information. Promote collaboration and open communication among staff members regarding security concerns and incidents. Encourage employees to report suspicious activities, phishing attempts, or security vulnerabilities promptly. Establish clear channels for reporting and escalate issues to the appropriate authorities for investigation and resolution.
  5. Measure Progress and Adjust Strategies: Track the effectiveness of your security awareness program by monitoring key metrics such as incident rates, employee participation, and knowledge retention. Use feedback from staff members to identify areas for improvement and adjust your training strategies accordingly. Continuously iterate and refine your approach to ensure long-term success.

By following these step-by-step guidelines, you can empower your team to become proactive defenders against cyber threats and enhance your organisations overall security posture. Investing in staff security awareness not only reduces the risk of security incidents but also cultivates a culture of vigilance and resilience within your organisation.

According to KnowBe4 91% of successful data breaches started with a spear phishing attack. One of the biggest phishing attacks occurred between 2013-15, where over $100 million was taken from Facebook and Google. Employees were receiving invoices, contracts, and other forged documents from a company with the same name as one of their existing suppliers. The malicious agents received millions in company funds, and this carried on over two years. It is essential that your staff is aware of the signs to look for in a phishing email, so your organisation does not fall victim of a cyber-attack.