One of the drawbacks of living in the digital era is that our life is not personal anymore. We are living an open life no matter how private we tend to keep it. Our data is more vulnerable than ever before. Your business is susceptible to cyber attacks and this can destroy it in minutes.
When retail giant Target’s databases were breached, the hackers stole the bank account information of more than 40 million customers including their credit and debit card credentials. This is till date one of the most high profile cyber security attacks in the history of digital science. So many other giants in different industries have been a victim of cyber attacks.
Cyber security not only revolves around businesses and the government but your computer systems, mobile phones and tablets too. The hackers might be more interested in your personal information like email address, name , home address , contact no and birthday.
In order to protect our digital assets, we need to be aware of the cyber threats and it’s consequences.
What is cyber security awareness?
Cyber security awareness is the mix of both knowing and planning something to ensure the protection of business’ data resources. When the employees are aware of cyber security threats, it implies they comprehend potential what cyber threats are, the effect a cyber attack will likely to have on their business and the means required to mitigate the risks and forestall it from invading their online workspace.
Making a culture around cyber security awareness in the working environment doesn’t imply that you’ll be totally waving off the danger. It just means that you are preparing yourself for the worst. You are ready and well-equipped to combat any threat.
Why does Security Awareness matter?
We hear it people say most of the time “Ignorance is bliss”. But when we talk about network security, this is not true. Incompetent employees could make you more prone to cyber attacks.To survive in this fast growing and dangerous digital world, employees must be educated to be cyber aware. These employees can become susceptible to hacking, phishing, scamming, and other threats that could destruct your business’ network.
Popup banners, ads, spam traps are harmless you think? These are the first things you should stay away from. Other cyber security dangers can be misleading to the eye, in any case. They could show up as a “harmless” email promotion or an “update”. Cybercriminals scan for chances to go after any loopholes that your representatives may have. Conduct cyber security training workshops for your employees so that they know how to perceive and deflect approaching dangers.
Something as petty as a phishing email represents the capacity to cause a total system failure. This could cost an organization significantly huge costs in fixes and may confine the overall productivity in the workplace. There’s no reason that an organization need to endure such loss when this is avoidable.
Cyber Security Awareness Training
Every business has workers which means that cyber security training is fundamental to your survival. As cyber attacks has become increasingly advanced and the measure of data online has upsurged, most businesses are confronting the overwhelming need of battling against cyber crime.
Cyber criminals are targeting businesses through their customers. They target information available on social networks and other online platforms. When the employees/ customers unknowingly click spam or phishing links, submit credentials , open malware attachments, and other personal information thinking it is safe, cyber criminals breach an organisation by easily bypassing the security protocols.
By conducting cyber security awareness training workshops for all your employees, you increase the chances of catching a cyber threat before it is implemented, resulting in the minimization of damage to your business.
An effective security training program will cover the following:
- Educate employees about cyber security risks. Emphasize on the negative impacts of cyber security by providing examples of businesses that have been a victim of this.
- Tell employees why cyber security is important and what role do they have to play. They should know what is in their best interest and how they will benefit in terms of productivity and job security.
- Inform the employees on potential decreases in productivity that can be cause due to cyber attacks.
- Give insights on cyber security policies and procedures of the company.
- Conduct agile meetings with them. Develop defensive procedures to combat cyber threats.
Benefits of cyber security awareness training
The benefits of cyber security awareness training is uncountable, this training will reward you in the long run. Here a few benefits:
* Prevention from cyber security related risks
* Data breaches are expensive and these training programs will save you money
* Saves time. If an organization encounter the same attack twice, the employees will take less time to identify the root cause
* Healthy working environment will promote a better sense of security
Cyber Security Threats
The list for these threats are pretty long, some have become obsolete as the technology advanced while some have become so common that it is almost impossible to identify. Some of the most common cyber security threats are:
1- Phishing: Phishing is the most common and successful practice where hackers target a broader net of users with emails that doesn’t look spam, but are actually aimed to lead the user to unwittingly click on the spammy links— the main data targets are usernames, passwords, credit card and debit card information.
2- Spear-Phishing: Spear-phishing is an email-spoofing attack whose primary focus is to gain entry to system softwares via malicious malware that’s downloaded through an attachment. If the person downloads and opens the attachment, the malware gets downloaded onto the user’s system.
3- Man-in-the-middle: It is a form of eavesdropping cyber attack where an actor maliciously involves himself into a discussion between two peers, corporate networks, or internet access points.The goal of this attack is to obtain personal information, such as login credentials, account credentials like credit card numbers.
4- Fileless Attacks: One of the most lethal cyber security threats is as a fileless attack , as it’s name speaks, fileless attacks do not rely on malicious malware attachments. They take advantage of applications that are already installed on the system. These attacks are typically very difficult to prevent and detect.
5- Social engineering: Social engineering occurs because of malicious activities done through human interactions. It is a result of human error since it utilizes manipulation tactics to make users violate the pronounced security practices.
Cyber security awareness must be a vital part of any organisation’s cyber security management strategy. It promotes foundational understandings on cyber security threats and risks. Ensuring cyber security awareness in your organisation will help you create a healthy environment.