How to Teach Your Employees About Cybersecurity

Someone doing cybersecurity awareness training, directing people on computers

Nothing is worse than knowing that you were the cause of a cyber attack against your company—attacks like these can lead to huge data loss and security breaches, as well as a negative impact on the morale of your team. 

However, without the proper cyber security awareness training, it can be hard to know exactly what to avoid. In this blog, we’ll discuss ways to empower your employees and yourself in the fight against cybercrime. 

The Consequences of Poor Cyber Hygiene

Cybersecurity breaches can have dire consequences for individuals and organizations alike. Without proper training, employees may be unaware of the dangers associated with poor cyber hygiene, inadvertently putting their organization at risk. 

The results of this lack of training could be devastating, as it could make your business 80% more likely to lose resources and data in a cyber attack.

Why Should Everyone be Trained on Cybersecurity?

At the end of the day, your employees are your first line of defense. Your business can invest in all the security systems you want, but it will still only take one person clicking on an unsafe link to bring it all crashing down. 

That is why well-trained employees are a crucial security measure in any business—instead of using sketchy sites or falling prey to phishing scams, your employees can work together to make sure your organization remains safe. With the right cyber security awareness training, you’ll discover the benefits of a proactive and vigilant workforce. 

Designing a Cyber Security Awareness Training Program 

To start getting your employees up to speed, here are some important steps in designing a safety program:

  1. Assessing your organization’s unique cybersecurity needs and risks: It’s important to know what risks your organization faces and how they apply to different areas of your specific business.
  2. Identifying key objectives and learning outcomes: What do you want your employees to learn from the program? You should understand exactly what your company will benefit from.
  3. Choosing appropriate training methods and materials: What forms of training work best for your staff? Consider how to make the training engaging—you don’t want an employee dozing off because the content is too repetitive.

Essential Topics to Cover in Cyber Security Awareness Training

No matter what kind of business you have, here are some best practices to enforce in your company’s cyber security awareness training.

Password Best Practices

Teach employees the importance of creating strong, unique passwords, and using password managers to keep them securely stored. Discuss the dangers of password reuse and the value of two-factor authentication.

Recognizing and Avoiding Phishing Attempts

Provide training on how phishing attempts work and the common signs to look out for, such as generic greetings, misspelled URLs, and requests for sensitive information.

Safe Internet Browsing Habits

Discuss the importance of using secure networks and avoiding questionable websites. Remind employees to always check for the padlock symbol in the address bar, indicating a secure connection.

Identifying and Reporting Suspicious Activities

Educate your team on typical signs of suspicious activities like unexpected email attachments, sudden changes in system performance, or unauthorized account access attempts. Explain the process for reporting such activities within your organization.

Mobile Device Security

Highlight the necessity of keeping personal and company-issued mobile devices secure. Emphasize the risks associated with unsecured Wi-Fi networks, the importance of regularly updating apps and operating systems, and the value of encryption.

Data Protection and Confidentiality

Explain the principles of data protection, including access controls, encryption, and secure disposal of data. You can include the legal and ethical implications of mishandling confidential information.

Remote Work Security Considerations

It’s been found that when remote workers cut back on security measures to boost productivity, it can lead to huge incidents—recently, larger companies have been paying approximately $22.68 million to fix them.

Training Methods and Resources 

There are some great methods for cyber security awareness training to make sure your employees are getting the most out of this content:

  • Interactive workshops and simulations 
  • Online courses and e-learning platforms 
  • Role-based training for specific job functions 
  • Third-party cybersecurity training providers
    • Companies like Simple Systems can offer pre-built training programs that take the workload off of your shoulders.
  • Regularly updated training materials and resources

Engaging and Motivating Employees

Creating a culture of cybersecurity awareness is about weaving security principles into the fabric of your organization. You can make it a part of every employee’s daily routine—it should become second nature. This involves constant reminders about the role each employee plays in maintaining the organization’s security.

To make cybersecurity training engaging and memorable, consider incorporating gamification and rewards for active participation. Offering incentives for employees who can spot phishing attempts, or who consistently follow good password practices, can make learning about cybersecurity fun and competitive.

Assessing Knowledge and Progress 

Don’t forget to check the progress of your employee’s cyber security awareness training. Here are some ideas:

  • Implementing regular quizzes and assessments 
  • Monitoring employee adherence to cybersecurity policies 
  • Gathering feedback for continuous improvement

Communicating Cybersecurity Policies and Procedures 

An important job as head of your company is to properly communicate your expectations for your employees. Make sure you are developing clear and concise policies regarding cybersecurity measures. This includes regularly communicating any and all updates to your employees. 

Lastly, don’t be afraid to enforce consequences for policy violations—your staff needs to understand that their actions can lead to significant damage to the company, and this topic should never be taken lightly.

Find Invulnerable Cybersecurity Services With Simple Systems

Professional cybersecurity services are a huge step in reducing the risk your company has. Simple Systems offers to shoulder that weight and help alleviate your security responsibilities. 

Contact us today for an effective partnership against cyber attacks!