Important topics to cover in your cybersecurity awareness training activity

Important topics to cover in your cybersecurity awareness training activity

Cybersecurity awareness training turns your employees into proactive defenders of your company's cybersecurity, making it a necessary and worthwhile addition to your information security strategy.

Considering how expansive the field of cybersecurity has become over the years, it can be tough to decide which topics to cover during training. Here are topics we believe to be among the most essential:

Phishing scams

A phishing scam is an attack that typically uses email, but some criminals may also use SMS, voice calls, and instant messages. Its goal is to fool victims into divulging sensitive information, wiring money, or downloading files that contain malware.

To accomplish these, perpetrators usually pretend to be trustworthy people or organizations, usually by using spoofed email addresses and other social engineering tactics. Phishing is so prevalent that, in 2021, 83% of organizations reported experiencing this particular scam.

Phishing attacks won't be so dangerous if your employees knew how to identify them. Teach your staff to recognize tell-tale signs of a phishing message. Also, train them to not click on links or download attachments found in suspicious emails.

Related reading: What are BEC scams and how can you protect your business from them?

Removable storage media

Some of your employees may be plugging personal portable storage devices, such as USB sticks, memory cards, and external hard drives, into their work computers to back up their files. Unfortunately, doing so exposes your network to malware infection and other cybersecurity risks.

Discourage this behavior by educating your staff on the dangers of using personal storage devices at work. You should also teach them to use safer alternatives, such as saving their work data in company-vetted cloud storage services.

Password habits

More than 60% of data breaches in 2021 involved stolen credentials, according to Verizon, proving that passwords are no longer as secure as many companies think they are. This is mostly because many users create weak passwords on purpose as these are easier to memorize.

During training, educate your employees on password best practices. These include using long and complex passwords and not reusing passwords across multiple accounts. If your business is investing in additional measures that enhance account security, such as password managers and multifactor authentication, you can use your training sessions to introduce these to your employees.

Mobile devices

Smartphones and tablets allow employees to work flexibly, but their small size makes them easy to lose. If these devices were to end up in cybercriminals' hands, your business could undergo a major cyber incident.

To prevent this, train your employees in the proper way to handle and store their mobile devices. This includes using built-in security features like fingerprint locks and never leaving their devices unattended in public places. They must also be selective about the apps they install and the websites they visit, making sure to avoid suspicious ones that could infect their device with malware.

Public Wi-Fi

Flexible working arrangements allow your staff to do their tasks on the go or wherever they are most comfortable and productive. Some of the most popular workplaces for remote workers, such as cafes and libraries, offer free public Wi-Fi. Although free Wi-Fi networks are convenient, most of them are also unsecured. Anyone using these networks, your employees included, are incredibly susceptible to hacking.

During training, remind your employees to never connect to free Wi-Fi networks using any device they use for work. You should also educate them on what they need to do in the event that they do connect to such networks. These include visiting only those websites that use HTTPS encryption, avoiding accessing any sensitive data, and using a virtual private network, if available.

Cybersecurity awareness training gives your employees the knowledge they need to effectively contribute to your cybersecurity strategy's success. To ensure the best results, seek the help of the cybersecurity experts at [company_short]. We will help you develop a training syllabus that meets your company's unique needs and are aligned with the latest cybersecurity standards. Contact our cybersecurity specialists today to get started.

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