Three Ways to Build an Effective Security Awareness Training Program for 2022

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Three Ways to Build an Effective Security Awareness Training-01

According to the 2021 Verizon Data Breach Investigations report, over 85 percent of breaches today are caused by human error.

One of the biggest threats to an organization’s information security is not a flaw in technology control environment. Rather, it is the actions or omissions of employees and other personnel that causes security incidents.

Organizations must have a security awareness program to ensure that employees understand the necessity of securing sensitive data, how they can securely manage data, and the risks of mishandling data.

Also Read: The Significance of Data Destruction for Data Security

Security awareness leader

The first step in creating a strong security awareness program is to appoint a security awareness leader who will be responsible for the program’s development, implementation, and maintenance. A security awareness leader in place will help in ensuring the success of the security awareness program through the assignment of responsibilities for the program.

Cyber-education training

The more employees are aware of real-life phishing emails and other security threats, the more equipped they will be to safeguard the company and its assets from malware, phishing, and other attacks. Theoretical knowledge, however, in the case of cybersecurity awareness, becomes much more valuable when put into practice. As a result, training must evolve into a hands-on learning experience involving simulations and practical application.

Continuous real-time feedback

Companies must conduct simulations on a regular basis, at least once a month, to ensure that all staff are trained well. Continuous feedback loops are also valuable in this situation. Employees reflect on the security gap that exists by engaging or disengaging with the information, demonstrating the need for cybersecurity awareness training in the first place. Furthermore, when security events contain real-time feedback, employees will be able to quickly see mistakes and learn how to avoid them in the future.

Management buy-in

For security awareness training to receive the attention it deserves, it must be a board-level issue. Security is receiving a lot more attention from boards of directors in an increasing number of companies. A board that takes security seriously and prioritizes it will go a long way toward improving an organization’s security training program. To build not only strong security training programs, but also a business culture where security is valued, gaining management buy-in to support and encourage security awareness training will be critical.

Also Read: Managing Identities and Entitlements to Mitigate Cloud Security Risks

Measuring changes

Metrics are critical – selecting what to measure, how to measure, and when to measure allows for effective management of the program. Before launching a security awareness training program, decision makers should establish a baseline to determine the level of awareness before training begins. The effectiveness of the training and awareness program can be judged by how well it helps users modify their security behavior in terms of attitude, knowledge, and actions.

If properly executed, security awareness training is a must-have for every company. If the user base is adequately informed about what to look out for, how to prevent problems, and how to resolve them, this alone might avert a lot of potential issues that could harm the infrastructure and the organization. Often, the key to prevention and protection is just awareness.

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