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What you need to know about creating security awareness among your teams

Security awareness

Contrary to popular belief, security isn’t just a technical problem. It’s also a people problem. If you want to keep the people element of the security equation strong, comprehensive awareness programmes are more important than most people think. 

The challenge is that raising security awareness among your team members isn’t an easy task. 

Even if you decide to get the support of a cybersecurity expert to carry out a security awareness programme, demonstrating the importance of security to non-technical stakeholders is no walk in the park.

A common goal we aim to achieve through these programmes is to increase the understanding and practical implementation of best practices when it comes to security. It should apply to every team member, new and old, across every department and it should be reinforced regularly. 

Let’s explore a few things you need to include and consider when it comes to security awareness programmes for your company. 

Train employees on how to make security tools a part of their work

To make the most of the security technology you invest in, security awareness training is critical. With it, your teams can understand the part they play in contributing to network or IoT security strategies for your company. 

A majority of security incidents can usually be traced back to a single employee. We often consider humans the weakest link in a company’s security system. 

Violation of organisational security policies occurs more frequently than many people believe. This means that you need to think about how you can deploy security awareness not only to educate employees, but also to empower them to feel a sense of ownership over enterprise security.

By empowering your teams with security knowledge and the technical understanding of how cybersecurity works, they’re able to follow more secure practices and uphold enterprise security. 

Centre your training on specific risks and vulnerabilities 

Every organisation has a different threat profile, but phishing, malware, and poor security practices are some of the most common threats we tend to see across organisations. 

Phishing, for example, accounts for around 71% out of all cyberattacks worldwide, and, unfortunately, the common denominator underlying these is human error.

The first step, therefore, in creating security awareness among your team members is to evaluate what some of your biggest risks, threats, and vulnerabilities are. 

This will help you shape your security strategies and messaging, which will, ultimately, influence the delivery of your security awareness programme. In this process, make sure you’re communicating why these measures are important—don’t assume your teams will get it. Help them see why their compliance is in their best interest. 

Get creative with security awareness

Most corporate training programmes are perceived as mundane and fail to add value because they don’t capture employee attention or commitment. This can be avoided if you find training formats that are meaningful to your teams. 

One of the greatest challenges of a security awareness programme is getting everyone to commit to the reality that this is not simply about teaching security, but shifting company culture to be a more risk-averse and cybersecurity-friendly one.

It’s important to spark interest among your team members about security awareness through content that is easy to understand and engaging. Customise and get the right message across—don’t operate based on a one-size-fits-all perspective.

One concept we’ve been exploring is how gamification can be used to create security awareness among teams. Our experience is that novel concepts like these need to be leveraged to keep messaging relevant to younger audiences.

Create security awareness in your company with the right strategies 

Security awareness is no longer a mysterious concept. It’s an ongoing investment to become more prepared for the future of the business environment—one that’s becoming increasingly riskier. 

Our advice is that you remain proactive about creating a programme that’s tailored to your specific risk environment and the threats you face and balance it against company culture and your processes. 

When security awareness is a company programme that involves every single employee, your teams are more likely to embrace their responsibility when it comes to enterprise security.

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