why employees need security awareness training

Why Your Staff Needs Security Awareness Training?

June 17, 2020

The fascinating fact of today's technology world is that it does not seem to impede but is expanding with time. Our day-to-day activities of connecting our businesses have transformed into an online life, which is increasing rapidly. This highest use of internet services has not only opened doors to exploit our vulnerabilities, but given a chance to cybercriminals to perform a successful attack. Neither a business nor an organization would want to face a breach since its impact is enormous, affecting the reputation and brand. Luckily, the good news is that there are processes and programs in place that can stop the effect of a cyberattack and, when executed appropriately, will mitigate the risk. That is where the security awareness training program comes in.

Cybersecurity awareness training helps to educate employees on various cyber risks and threats and magnify their awareness on best practices to keep their networks secure. The repercussions of not following the process would damage the organization’s data. The primary goal of security training is to educate students on how to shield the data from manipulation.

Employees must understand how to protect sensitive company data. Security awareness training is a formal program to educate employees about cybersecurity and avoid becoming victims of cyberattacks or data breaches.

What Is the Goal of Security Awareness Training?

A security awareness program assures that the workforce at all levels follows the instructions and carefully utilizes the information and resources entrusted to them. The training encourages and helps in identifying the end-users to be aware of the threats. The training programs, however, get updated based on changes in new technologies followed by new threats. Following policies and utilizing the knowledge gained from such training programs will minimize the exposure of your sensitive information.

The primary reason to include security awareness training is that educated staff can defend against common types of attacks surfaced on businesses. For instance, prevalent phishing attacks involve emails from spoof domain names, giving a chance to attackers to pretend to be someone familiar to the staff and ask them to click on false links or provide sensitive information.

  • An organization’s success often lies in the hands of its employees. Establishing a security training program fulfills the requirements of understanding how important it is to protect sensitive data and the risks of mishandling information.
  • Employees who raise the alarm on suspicious emails or any other malicious activity to their superiors will make the company less vulnerable to attacks.

Most professionals with security awareness come from technical backgrounds. Having a specialized knowledge is an advantage since you understand the technologies and risks involved within a security system of networks. The challenge lies with the non-technical group, such as HR, legal, marketing, who have less knowledge and lack the skills. The awareness training might be advanced for them, due to their lack of computer skills.

Why Is Security Awareness Important?

Many surveys and research findings claim that employees are considered a significant threat in an organization. Lack of attention, not adhering to security policies and negligence, has led to security breaches in an organization’s IT infrastructure. Some other factors resulting in data leakage are:

  • Information sharing to external sources.
  • Lack of tool, techniques, and processes.

How to Build a Robust Security Awareness Training Program?

  • Security programs to meet all the industry standards and compliance regulations.
  • Non-technical professionals can expect to follow the security rules and stay abreast of new tools and technologies as and when they get introduced.
  • Non-technical personnel can expect to understand and learn the vulnerabilities involved in the networks and systems, and act promptly.
  • Flexible training programs are introduced based on the requirement of an individual. There are classroom sessions and online training programs.

What Topics Should Security Awareness Training Include?

Depending on the job role of end-users, they must be trained on the core security topics. For instance, an employee working with payment card details will require PCI DSS training, another going on frequent business visits will benefit from public Wi-Fi and mobile device training. Role-based security awareness provides organizations a source for training personnel at the levels based on their job functions and responsibilities. The goal is to build different training catalogs to help deliver the right training to the right people at the right time. Besides, managers with privileged access should have a firm understanding of their security requirements, particularly with access to sensitive data.

Some of the core security awareness training topics are:

  • Use of the Internet and Email
  • Passwords & Authentication
  • Physical Security
  • Mobile Device Security
  • Remote Working
  • Public Wi-Fi
  • Cloud Security
  • Social Media Use
  • Phishing
  • Malware (Viruses, Worms, Trojans, Spywares, Adwares)
  • Desktop Security
  • Social Engineering
  • Home Security

Remote working best practices are:

How Does a Comprehensive Security Awareness Training Program Help Enterprises Fight Cyberattacks?

The key benefits of a security awareness training program are:

Protection of Company Assets

When organizations upgrade their security protocols and ensure employees have the security knowledge and are in compliance, then the chances of having to tackle severe security breaches and threats reduce. As an outcome, operational ability, machines, and the information that your company operates on are protected. Besides, a company is less likely to face lawsuits, fines, security audits, and data breaches.

Introduction to Different Tools

Security awareness programs should introduce the employees to a wide variety of tools and techniques. The training should be diverse to incorporate all the methods that employees require for education on security. Hands-on training would be the best method since this would give them the scope to understand the detection and prevention of security breaches.

Saving Money

Rather than spending vast sums of money on the damage to systems, reputations, and other company assets, security awareness would benefit in preventing attacks, breaches, threats, and reduce costs. Employees will detect any loss and breach sooner, which will help the company address breaches sooner, hence lessening the costs of such an event.

Customer Satisfaction

Customers feel a sense of confidence in working with your business when they are aware that the employees are trained to avoid security breaches. The business is less likely to face fewer incidents of breaches in customer information, fewer lawsuits, and losing customers.

Security awareness training keep businesses operating even when a security incident occurs. These trainings are the means to minimize business downtime and show that the firm is stable on its current security posture and is committed to protecting customers’ and employees’ data.

Speed Detection

If hackers try to access company data or practice any techniques such as phishing, man-in-the-middle attacks, or social engineering, trained staff can detect and report the suspicious security incident in a much more efficient manner. Their security awareness and attention will enable them to see the changes in their system, and they can alert their managers for the immediate response process.

Often employees constitute a significant threat to an organization’s security structure. Similarly, they are also the key drivers that lead to their achievements. A security awareness training program is an essential component required for compliance with laws and regulations of information security training programs.

To conclude, it is necessary for organizations to implement security awareness solutions like Aware that help in the long run in prevention and remediation procedures, and can prevent a lot of potential problems that would affect the infrastructure and the business. Sometimes, awareness is a fundamental element to prevent and protect. Hence, the training programs should be reinforced regularly.