Successful data breaches are often traced back to employees that were duped by a phishing attacks. The pandemic has sparked a surge in remote work and dealt a double blow to the battle against phishing, presenting a readily exploitable target for scammers.
The number of phishing sites being generated is steadily increasing, according to Google’s Transparency Report. And it’s been happening for a couple of years now. This is a challenge that companies must take seriously, with thousands of new ransomware and phishing websites appearing every week
People need assistance not only in recognizing phishing scams but also in assisting businesses in detecting phishing attacks and responding appropriately. Communication is critical.
Teach people how to report phishing attacks
It’s impossible for security teams to monitor patterns and battle attackers if employees actually ignore or erase alleged phishing scams. They will need evidence to tell the difference between random phishing attacks and organized phishing operations with a shared target.
If a person is unaware of an incoming email and simply deletes it, the security team may not be aware of the phishing scam. It could either work if it’s sent to a certain individual, or it could have already convinced another employee to hand over passwords or download malware. When it is identified, however, security experts will investigate and take action to eliminate the problem.
When anyone thinks they have been a victim of a phishing scheme, the situation becomes even more complicated. Fear of retaliation and shame will both deter people from disclosing their wrongdoings. A system of secrecy, on the other hand, benefits the threat actor. Make it clear that all remotely dangerous behavior should always be identified, and allow victims to do so without fear of retaliation.
Make the reporting process as simple as possible
The more straightforward it is for users to report a potential phishing scam, the more likely they are to do so. Provide a warning button right in the email app, so that if anyone is wary of an email, they can immediately raise an alarm. The email should be sent to a single address so that IT can examine, evaluate, validate, and map patterns.
Create a feedback loop. It is critical to let people know whether they have discovered a phishing scheme, a survey, or just plain spam text. People would be more likely to report in the future if businesses have a kind of evidence. Taking this a step forward by introducing positive feedback to encourage employees who actively detect and track phishing exercises or real-world phishing attempts will be helpful for all.
Be open about security awareness training
It might be tempting to conduct mock phishing exercises without employees’ understanding and see how they respond, but it’s best to emphasize the value of security awareness training and clarify how it is done. The importance of a virtual phishing exercise is not diminished by making people aware of it. In reality, informing staff that they will be checked raises their sensitivity and increases their likelihood of acting professionally at all times, which is just what every organization wants.