In the digital era where so much is shared and stored online, employees play a critical role in the safeguarding of your company data. However, despite growing awareness of the common cybersecurity pitfalls people are still inadvertently making mistakes that have the potential to lead to significant security breaches.
Many employees are using easy-to-remember passwords or using the same passwords for multiple accounts, making it simple for cyber criminals to breach security. Companies should be encouraged to implement a password policy that enforces regular password updates and prohibits the use of old passwords. The use of password manager tools and 2-factor authentication are also recommended to protect sensitive programmes and documents.
Falling for Phishing Emails
Phishing emails have got more sophisticated over recent years with cybercriminals creating emails that on the surface appear legitimate but are designed to trick people into revealing sensitive information or encourage the user to click on malicious links. One way to overcome this issue is by delivering cybersecurity training to your workforce, by equipping your employees to look out for common identifiers within fishing emails, such as misspellings and suspicious email addresses you can better inform your workforce and arm them with the skills for recognising phishing threats. We always recommend checking the email source if you have doubts over the content of any email you receive, one phone call can be all it takes to protect your business from a cyber threat. Businesses can also install sophisticated software which acts as a first line of defense across emails by scanning and detecting malicious links.
Delaying or not initialising system updates
We’re all guilty of putting off a system update to a more convenient time, however, this negligence leaves your systems open to security vulnerabilities. Educate employees on the importance of updating their systems. Businesses should also try and automate their updates where they can, and with the introduction of cloud technologies and automated software, this has become a better solution for many.
Joining unsecured Wi-Fi networks
We live in a more connected environment allowing businesses to operate on the go. However, it’s important that employees are advised to avoid using unsecured Wi-Fi networks for work-related tasks, especially when handling sensitive data. Unsecured Wi-Fi networks lack encryption making it easier for a hacker to intercept data passed between your device and the network.
Using unsecured personal devices
Personal devices may not have the same level of security measures as company-owned devices, making them an easy target for exploitation. IT departments have limited control over personal devices, which hinders their ability to monitor and protect the network effectively. Using a personal device to send, store, and manage company data could also lead to data protection violations.
Without cyber awareness training, staff can be susceptible to common cybersecurity traps such as spam, malware or social media scams.
To build an effective threat prevention strategy, it’s imperative that organisations provide employees with up-to-date data protection and cybersecurity training to ensure they can identify security threats and prevent them in time.
Investing in cybersecurity awareness training is crucial for several reasons.
- Mitigating human error
- Protecting sensitive data
- Preventing cyber attacks
- Ensuring compliance
- Staying ahead of emerging threats