Phishing attacks constitute a significant portion of the cybersecurity threats your business faces. Especially now, since our reliance on technology is increasing rapidly and we’re integrating more & more remote workforces, phishing attacks have become more prevalent.
There are a number of techniques that attackers can use to track your employees, and there is no cybersecurity solution that can effectively block all such attacks. Hence, your workforce must have phishing awareness. In this article, we will discuss a few aspects that you must incorporate in your cybersecurity training programs to ensure phishing awareness among employees.
- Risk Awareness
Risk factors vary according to job roles. Some job roles merely have access to confidential data, while others practically only work with it. However, vulnerabilities in security systems can be exposed where you least expect it, and that’s all you need to fall victim to a phishing attack.
Hence, it is vital to understand risk awareness. While the degree of cybersecurity training & phishing awareness may vary from one job role to another, there should be no employee who isn’t aware of the risk and doesn’t know how to work through it cautiously.
- Social Engineering
Social engineering tactics like sending surveys and luring employees into revealing personal information accidentally are ubiquitous. However, you can efficiently deal with this problem by:
- teaching employees how to interact with users online
- establishing guidelines about sharing private information over networks
- asking employees to enable multi-factor authentication on user accounts compulsorily
- training employees to create complex usernames and passwords that are tough to guess
- giving cybersecurity password tips to your employees
- training your workforce about virtual private networks (VPNs)
- Sophisticated Phishing Emails
We are way past the times when phishing emails were easy to spot due to their poor structure and language. Today, the degree of sophistication in phishing emails has increased as several resources are available to generate clean emails with the target language.
Hence, your employees must be trained to spot suspicious intricacies like glaring grammar errors, stylistic issues that can somehow indicate a sender’s disreputable nature.
- Repetition and Consistency
Just like all other training programs, phishing awareness and cybersecurity training also require consistency. It is not a one-time job, and single sessions like workshops aren’t sufficient to train your employees effectively.
You should ensure that your phishing awareness and cybersecurity training programs are repeated at regular intervals (for example, once in every two months) and interactive resources like simulation games, instructional guides, and phishing mock-ups are used consistently for impactful training.
- Threats in Attachments
A phishing link doesn’t need to be present in the email. Sometimes, the threat lies in the attachment. Emails that appear to be from a reputable source may contain attachments that ask you to open a link under the pretense of ‘reviewing information’ or ‘updating data.’ So, your phishing awareness and cybersecurity training program must include training about inspecting links in attachments before opening them up.
- Consequences for Ignorance
Just like you use reward systems to appreciate employees who achieve specific goals, it is important to put certain consequential penalties in place so that employees take phishing awareness and cybersecurity training seriously. This step will clearly deliver the message of urgency to your employees, ensuring that they know how vital these skills are not to be disregarded.
- Insights from Previous Data & Latest Trends
It must be your priority to document every threat and incident that has surfaced in your organization over the years. Gathering insights from your previous data will help you to train your employees about the loopholes that went undiscovered in the past and cost your organization a lot. This information will help them to understand security vulnerabilities more clearly and avoid the same mistakes.
Also, your employees should be aware of the latest cybersecurity trends. Training them about the latest developments in the field of security and retrieving actionable insights from the latest trends will help employees to implement present-day security practices for high safety.
Network security training, phishing awareness, and cybersecurity training are critical tasks that should be implemented from the very beginning of employment. Employees should be trained about essential aspects of phishing and cybersecurity attacks consistently and with updated information to always be alert.
It is important to educate your workforce so that they can intelligently handle any problems that come their way. By integrating the aspects mentioned above into phishing awareness and cybersecurity training programs, you’ll be able to educate your employees about phishing threats and cybersecurity attacks effectively.