In a world where news spreads fast and online reputation is everything, cyber-attacks and data breaches are a massive threat to organizations across the world. Data breaches are among the top three threats to global stability and the average cost of a data breach is $3.86 million. Aside from the financial costs, reputations take a big hit and some never quite recover. When the overall costs of insufficient security are laid out, it’s clear that a solid cybersecurity strategy is crucial to every organization and a healthy cybersecurity budget is worth the investment.
So if you’re ready to level up your security, one of the most important places to start is with your employees and their knowledge and use of cybersecurity best practices. The cybersecurity tips below cover awareness, basic safety, online safety, social media, data security, tips for remote workers, small businesses and considerations for CEOs and CISOs to keep in mind. “This really opened my eyes to AD security in a way defensive work never did.”
Cybersecurity Tips - Basic, Online, Remote, Workers, Tips for Management
Awareness Is Key: How to Make Employees Care
The first step to better security across your organization is to make employees more aware. They’re your greatest asset when it comes to security, and your greatest liability. Making employees think of cybersecurity as a top priority is easier said than done when they have todo lists and deadlines of their own. Use the tips below to give it your best shot — these will help train, inform and make your employees care more about the role they play in the cybersecurity of your organization.
Show them what’s in it for them. So much of what employees learn during at-work security training can be applied to their personal account safety. Show them the value of the information as it pertains to their safety and security, not just the company’s interests.
Make it clear that no one is safe from an attack. It’s not a question of if but when it happens, then how quickly and effectively team members can react to block the attack or minimize the damage.
Start awareness training during onboarding. It’s never too early to learn good habits. It makes a lot of sense to integrate cybersecurity into the onboarding process as new employees are likely gaining access to accounts, making their passwords and learning about company processes.
Create an official cybersecurity training plan. To go with the tip above, there should be an organized training plan in place for employees that is updated as necessary and accessible.
Talk about data ethics. “When employees think about data ethically, like thinking about the human, the person, or the family the data represents, data breaches are less likely and their impact could be reduced.”
Educate on Data Privacy Policies. Teach employees that just because some data is available that the usage of that data may be restricted. As an example, most companies maintain lists of contacts who have opted out of receiving any further sales emails. Individuals emailing them violate this policy.
Bring in professional cybersecurity awareness and training experts. These trained professionals can engage employees and lay out the basics and specifics that they should know for their job.
Conduct cybersecurity “emergency” simulations set up by your internal security team or an outside source. These simulations should be tailored to specific job roles and focus on attacks that employees could receive so they can learn specific takeaways and areas to improve.
Send regular updates on the protocol, threats, new scams and viruses, software updates and other important cybersecurity information.
Communicate clearly and concisely. “Try to stay away from long emails and memos that a lot of employees will skim the first couple of sentences before deleting. Instead, try creating some videos, or maybe hang up some infographics in main areas of the office, like the break room or near the water fountain… Even if your employees aren’t that interested in security, repeatedly reading phrases and actions in visual form will help them remember said messages when something out of the ordinary occurs.”
Hold regular security training. “As new threats and patterns of threats emerge, regular security training must be implemented on an enterprise wide level, to make sure the kinds of security holes that allow malicious activity to penetrate the enterprise are not exposed.”
Recognize and reward employees who report malicious emails or other attacks. With so many other things on their minds, this will help keep security at the forefront.
Create a cybersecurity-friendly culture by appointing advocates and keeping employees motivated overall to maintain the integrity of your cybersecurity best practices.
Set the tone at the top. “Business owners are responsible for setting the company culture. Owners who take cybersecurity seriously will influence their employees to do the same. Make cybersecurity part of the workplace conversation.”
Cybersecurity Tips for the Workplace
We’ve gathered the most effective and important cybersecurity safety tips to keep in mind for prevention and risk mitigation. Included are some baseline security tips, as well as online safety tips including best practices for browsing, email security and other online activity. We also include guidance on social media safety that focuses specifically on social media practices and the best ways to keep those accounts safe, as well as special considerations for remote workers, CEOs, CISOs and small businesses.
Basic Cybersecurity Tips
Virtually and physically lock up devices, assets and data storage. Make sure you lock your device any time you leave it unattended and also make sure de