Businesses in DFW and around the world understand the importance of protecting their digital assets from a data breach or malware infection. Cybersecurity has become just as important as any other part of business operations because the risks are too great if you fall victim to an attack.
There are multiple layers to any good IT security strategy, and many of these layers include using certain resources, like a firewall or update and patch management for devices.
However, many companies miss the mark when it comes to one very important layer of any cybersecurity plan, which is employee awareness training.
Employees are on the front line of most cyberattacks because phishing is largely used as the delivery vehicle for everything from ransomware to credential theft. While you can put safeguards in place to mitigate phishing attacks, it only takes one mistaken click on a scam email to unleash ransomware throughout your network.
Ransomware attacks increased 485% in 2020.
The 2021 Cyberthreat Defense Report noted that low security awareness among employees was a top barrier to good cybersecurity for organizations. Many businesses don’t spend enough time or effort on cybersecurity awareness training for employees. Just doing training once per year is not enough to establish a cyber-aware workforce.
Companies should invest in training that is continuous throughout the year, using various delivery methods, such as:
- Tip sheets
- Newsletter “Cybersecurity Corner”
- Phishing simulations
- In-person or video-based sessions
- Self-learning through webinars
- Incident response drills
- Posters and other physical IT security reminders
Here are some of the benefits your business gains from putting more time and effort into your employee IT security awareness program.
Reduced Risk of Falling Victim to a Cyberattack
The average cost for a small business that suffers a ransomware attack is $200,000. Many businesses never fully recover from an attack or take several years before the financial damage is fully overcome.
When you have a staff that has sharp cybersecurity skills, you can reduce your risk of suffering a cyberattack by up to 70%. That’s a significant reduction and one that can prevent you from falling victim to a devastating attack that shuts your company down for days.
Develop a Security-Focused Culture
When you build a security-focused culture, risk and costs related to IT security and data privacy compliance are reduced.
Ongoing training not only shows your team that data security is important but also reinforces a “security always” way of working. This is where things like considering the security of a sensitive file before emailing it becomes second nature to your team.
Mistakes are mitigated because employees have the knowledge, skills, and support that emphasizes good cybersecurity hygiene daily.
Prevents Costly Downtime
The average cost of IT downtime for a company is $5,600 per minute. When companies have to continually stop operations to deal with a potential phishing email click or malicious file download, it costs them significantly.
When human error is taken out of the IT security equation, systems run more effectively and securely. Blatant mistakes are avoided that could cause downtime due to a cybersecurity incident.
Promotes Customer Trust in Your Company
If customers know that your employees and company as a whole are well-trained on information security best practices, it instills trust. Some potential clients with their own good IT security cultures might even ask about your employee awareness training program before deciding to do business with you.
Having a team that receives regular ongoing security awareness training can be used as a marketing advantage that puts you out ahead of the competition.
No one enjoys being the person that got fooled by a phishing email and compromised the company’s Microsoft 365 account. When you empower employees through ongoing security awareness training, they gain skills that will help them throughout their lives at work and home.
Morale is improved when employees can feel well-armed to deal with phishing in all its forms (email, SMS, social, phone) as well as know-how to handle sensitive data.
Improves Business Continuity
When employees understand things like why backups are important and what to do in the case of a ransomware attack, your company is more resilient.
Business continuity relies on a team’s ability to respond quickly and effectively in the event of any major work disruption, which includes a cyberattack or malware infection.
Taking your team through incident response drills as part of their security awareness training provides the knowledge and experience they need to respond swiftly in the event of an attack.
Work With Cloudavize to Develop Your Security Awareness Training Plan
Cloudadvize can work with your Dallas-Fort Worth business to put together an engaging and time-efficient security awareness training program that keeps cybersecurity at top of mind and encourages a culture where IT security is second nature.
Contact Cloudavize today for a free consultation to get started.