When it comes to information security awareness, the truth of the matter is that employees tend to be the weakest link in the proverbial chain – but they can also become your biggest strength and advocate for improving overall security. When we talk about educating employees It’s not only end-users that need training, but also information technology and information security personnel to perform skills assessment and identify gaps in their knowledge.
Whether it involves using work-issued mobile devices to access unsecured wireless hot spots or clicking on malware-infecting links, workers don’t always do the right thing, and it’s up to you as the employer to ensure that they understand the do’s and don’ts so that your business interests aren’t compromised.
What follows are 3 reasons you need to teach your employees about information security.
- Fraud / Data Leakage
- Social Engineering
- Notification & Feedback
If your workers like to click on links with reckless abandon, you need to take action. You might be surprised at how many millions of dollars have been lost owing to scams perpetrated through fraudulent emails. Such emails contain links that, once clicked on, can lead unsuspecting employees to divulge personal information that cyber criminals can then use for nefarious purposes.
You need to ensure that your workers are aware of the risks associated with clicking on links. In addition to possibly giving up their own personal information, they could also jeopardize corporate data.
If your workers are into sites like Facebook and LinkedIn — and who isn’t these days? — then it’s incumbent on you to insure that they’re aware of information security best practices. With more and more workers bringing in their own devices and using them at work, you need to ensure that your IT department is on top of things and that this knowledge trickles down to the workforce. Many of these social media sites and still today email play a part in trying to get employees to give up personal information.
In order to have your employees part of the overall security program at your organization it is imperative that they can provide feedback and notify your information security team of threats that they are facing in order to continuously improve an organization’s security posture.
What You Can Do
When it comes to training employees, you need to inform them about using privacy settings, what viruses and malware are, how they can be avoided or dealt with, and how to avoid social engineering, which is a strategy whereby fraudsters pose as friends or colleagues of workers so as to get confidential data. If you cover all the bases, you’ll have an employee base that is well able to steer clear of online threats.