Tips for Creating a Security Awareness Campaign
Maintaining your business' cybersecurity is a team effort. Having strong professional IT services support is crucial, but the effectiveness of their work can be inadvertently undermined by your own team if they have not received proper training. After all, organizations only move forward towards success if all wheels move in the same direction.
Security Awareness Campaigns
Security awareness campaigns promote security and privacy best practices. This education and training needs to be ongoing. Cybersecurity and data protection should be integrated into every aspect of an organization.
What does IT security entail?
An information technology (IT) security plan is a set of strategies designed to prevent cyberattacks and hacking, to keep your data private, and to ensure that your network is working at its maximum functionality. An important element of this plan is team training. Whether you have an in-house or outsourced IT professional, they will help your company create a well-rounded security awareness plan that tackles every component of IT security. These are as follows:
1. Network Security
A network includes all computers, devices, and services that are connected together and that access shared data and information. Network security aims to prevent unauthorized and unwanted entry into a network from any outside persons or applications, especially those that have a malicious intent.
2. Internet Security
All online activity puts users at some element of risk. Internet security strives to keep all data being sent and received over the Internet safe and secure. It also monitors web-based applications that threaten users' privacy and minimize one's vulnerability to spyware, malware, and other harmful infectious software.
3. Endpoint Security
Endpoint security aims to secure each device used in a network independently. This type of security prevents devices connected to a company's network, such as employees' smartphones and tablets, from accessing websites or running software that may have malicious content.
4. Cloud Security
With more businesses moving their everyday operations to the cloud, having strong cloud security is crucial to maintaining the integrity and functionality of a company's data, applications, and software.
5. Application Security
Speaking of applications, the increase in app downloads on devices requires special attention to ensure that all apps are running safely and securely.
Tips for Creating a Security Awareness Campaign
- Encourage Communication
- Educate on Risks and Threats
- Make Your Campaign Relatable
- Build Enthusiasm
- Limit / Censor Social Media Usage
- Acknowledge Success
Once an IT professional has built the foundations of a strong and secure IT operating process, it is up to a company's staff to maintain a successful level of security by adhering to safe cyber best practices. There are a few tactics a business can implement within its staff to ensure proper security awareness.
1. Encourage Communication
A key to having cyber safety (and other safety) in a workplace is by creating a space that values an efficient and loyal team. Creating an atmosphere that allows for open communication fosters trust within the company and provides a safe place for questions. This encourages employees to get on board with the implementation of safer and more cautious practices in their daily operations and ask questions about practices they may not fully understand.
IT security awareness training must be an ongoing process.
2. Educate on Risks and Threats
This is critical to the success of your cybersecurity plan. By educating staff on potential risks and threats, a company can increase awareness and maximize security. A team that is uninformed is not unified in maintaining a secure and successful business. IT security awareness training must be an ongoing process.
3. Make Your Campaign Relatable
Having every employee, regardless of their role, working together to minimize security threats means making the risks relatable to staff on every level. This goes for interns, administrative positions, and so on. Often cybercriminals target employees at an entry-level role as they may be more easily manipulated through tactics, such as spear phishing.
4. Build Enthusiasm
A company can help build enthusiasm by providing each department with an IT safety strategy that resonates with the day-to-day operations specific to each department. For example, a receptionist should be aware of certain questions posed over the phone or email that have suspicious intent. They should be encouraged to seek a second opinion when faced with any doubt.
A company’s IT security requires buy-in from all staff. A company that fosters a fear of accountability will only create a hostile environment for IT security. Employing positive reinforcement and encouragement builds unity and encourages staff to work together more efficiently. Your team should never be afraid to admit to a cybersecurity lapse as problems identified quickly can often be contained.
5. Limit / Censor Social Media Usage
While this may not go over well with all staff, implementing an in-house strategy that limits personal social media usage is an effective strategy in keeping a company's network protected. Social media activity on a company’s device can lead to security breaches, as well as expose vulnerabilities within your team that cybercriminals can then exploit.
6. Acknowledge Success
Keeping a team positive and unified is a great way to ensure continued success in combating security threats. Keep staff motivated by recognizing and rewarding their efforts through acknowledgement and further positive encouragement.
If you would like to provide security awareness training to your staff, reach out to CITI. We can do an on-site training session so that your team fosters a skeptical eye and understands how to avoid IT security threats.