Cybersecurity is more than just preventing malicious outside forces from causing harm to you or your organization. It is also important to ensure that your own stakeholders, particularly your employees, who come into your office building and use your office systems on a daily basis, do not become a hacker’s best friend. What is the point of spending your hard-earned money on penalties, lawyers, and professionals with expensive skills, as well as CHFI online certification, to deal with and investigate a cyber attack that you could have easily avoided in the first place? If your security isn’t watertight at the ground level, it won’t be watertight anywhere. Here’s what you should do to keep your hardworking employees from becoming a costly liability.
Train Your Employees
Training your employees does not require you to pay for them to learn network security or obtain a CEH certification. It entails keeping your employees from becoming walking bait for hackers. The majority of cyber-attacks are carried out through social engineering, which involves tricking people into disclosing sensitive information. Technologies are only as reliable as the people who use them. And, while there is a fix for every software flaw, there is none for human stupidity. Organizations must therefore train their employees on how social engineering attacks work and how to protect themselves against them. It is a common misconception that malware is easy to detect when in reality, an alarming number of devices are infected by malware with the user having no idea.
Did you know that 350,000 new pieces of malware are discovered every day? And did you know that every minute, four businesses around the world are targeted by ransomware? You’ll be surprised at how many files an employee has access to. And a hacker only needs one vulnerable, gullible, not-so-smart employee to be enticed by freebies or misled by a false alarm into disclosing their personal information without even a hint of suspicion ringing in their ears.
Limit Employee Access
Data breaches are both common and costly. Your employees have access to a wealth of sensitive data, and it only takes one phishing attempt to get that valuable data out the door and available for purchase on the dark web. Cloud security is quickly becoming one of the top priorities for organizations that use cloud services to coordinate and organize their vast global business, particularly in times when employees are exchanging valuable company data remotely over the internet. Limiting your employees’ access to only those files that are absolutely necessary for them will keep your highly sensitive data out of the hands of the wrong people.
Examine Ex-Employee Access
What about employees who have resigned from their positions? Sure, the human resources department ensures that their computers have been returned, but what if they still have access to your company’s data? Every employee uses personal devices such as mobile phones and laptop computers to work and access files, but organizations rarely consider how to manage that access after an employee has left the company. There have been numerous cases where ex-employees of companies breached the system and accessed sensitive data for misuse, costing the companies millions of dollars. Ex-employee access has thus become a dangerous mistake that can be easily avoided by implementing strict security practices.
Remember that as long as your employees are untrained, unchecked, and at risk, no matter how many Chief Security Officers you hire, your entire organization, up to and including the highest levels, is at risk.