The human element accounts for the lion’s share of phishing attacks—a startling 82%. However, employees are the frontline of defense against cybercriminals. Training employees to avoid common cyber pitfalls can prevent hackers from successfully breaching the company’s data, systems, and sensitive information. The following are several suggestions for employee cybersecurity training.

  1. Initial and ongoing training. Initial training should cover typical cyberattack methods and threats, such as phishing, smishing, vishing, and social engineering. Employees should also learn the ramifications of a data breach. Unfortunately, cybercriminals constantly evolve their tactics. As such, cybersecurity training cannot be a one-and-done event. Regular training sessions should teach employees to recognize hackers’ latest techniques and tactics. Detailing recent successful cyberattacks can help employees identify real-world attempts as well.
  2. Look for the red flags. Some cyberattacks have common red flags. For example, phishing emails often have grammatical errors, false URLs, and typos. Phishing emails also tend to use pressure tactics, such as telling the person someone made a massive charge on their credit card. If they click the accompanying link, the fraudulent webpage tricks them into providing passwords, social security numbers, or credit card numbers. The links are also usually fraudulent. The email may have the correct URL in the text but hyperlinks to a fake website. If in doubt, the employee can always type URLs directly into the browser to check on their accounts.
  3. Downloading attachments. Many employees open or download attached files as part of their regular workdays. However, the repetitive nature of the task can lower their vigilance. Employees must diligently check who sent the attachments before clicking on them.
  4. Password security. Most people know that reusing passwords or making them easy to guess are bad cybersecurity practices. However, many continue to do so out of convenience. In addition to creating strong passwords, employees can boost their cybersecurity by enabling two-factor authentication (2FA) or multi-factor authentication (MFA). Additionally, employees should each have a unique login and never share their passwords.

Cultivating a culture of cybersecurity awareness doesn’t happen overnight. Continual training can help employees remain aware of emerging cyber threats, reinforce their existing knowledge, and prevent data breaches. Contact Windermere Insurance Group to learn more about cybersecurity protection.