6 things to include in your end-user security training

Hackers commonly target businesses through their end-users. This is because personnel may click on links shared through, for example, social media channels and email correspondence.

However, according to recent studies, 36% of businesses don’t offer any cybersecurity training after an initial on-boarding program.

Are you giving your employees the comprehensive training they need to beat common cyber scams? Here’s our rundown of the 6 most effective training techniques you can incorporate into your business to ensure that end users can handle the complex array of cyber threats they’ll encounter.

1. Induction process

IT training should start from the moment an employee joins your company. Assess their IT security competency at the outset so you know what training needs they have.

Show your new recruits how seriously you take cybersecurity, and they’re more likely to stay vigilant. Cybersecurity should be a top priority for any business looking to grow and succeed in this digital world. And an emphasis on security training helps your reputation.

2. Best practice awareness

Make sure you encourage good IT and cybersecurity practices among your employees. Train your staff on:

  • Identifying phishing scams and suspicious emails
  • Changing their passwords and security credentials
  • Company security plans, and how to report any issues
  • How to safely use remote devices outside the office
  • Avoiding common mistakes such as connecting to unsecured WiFi networks and accidentally divulging too much information over the telephone

3. Vigilance

Your employees can’t plan for every cybersecurity threat. However, they can stay vigilant. Encourage employees to be proactive and raise any cybersecurity concerns with the IT department.

If a new threat emerges that employees should know about, make sure they’re given an appropriate briefing and a point of contact to raise any questions with.

For example, if there’s a new phishing scam doing the rounds, tell employees what to look for and who they can forward any suspicious emails or files to.

4. Password management

Enforce how important it is for employees to use strong, obscure passwords to protect confidential files, their email account, and their computers and remote devices. The best passwords:

  • Are at least 10 characters long
  • Include a mixture of upper and lower case letters
  • Include other characters, such as _, and numbers

Generally speaking, the more complex the password, the harder it is to guess. Creating strong passwords is just as important as protecting those passwords from disclosure.

Employees should also know to change their passwords frequently. 

5. Simulated attacks

The most effective training you can offer staff is live, practical training. In the context of cybersecurity, this means running security drills. For example, you could simulate a phishing scam or test how well employees protect their passwords.

This strategy isn’t designed to criticize or “punish” employees for careless behavior. Instead, it encourages reflection, which often results in better behavior moving forward. Much like building fire drills, IT attack drills are a must for any modern business.

6. Continuous training

According to a recent survey, only 39% of respondents offer employees ongoing cybersecurity training throughout their employment. This is a major problem because new threats emerge all the time, and your employees must be ready for them.

Don’t neglect personnel training needs. Offer your team security refresher courses, cyber threat updates, and ongoing training when it’s needed.

End-user security training doesn’t have to be stressful. For more guidance on best practice techniques, and for advice on the latest security threats affecting businesses, contact us today.