How to engage employees in cybersecurity

Online communication is an essential tool for any business. However, if not properly secured, this type of communication can present a serious liability.

According to U.S. National Cyber Security Alliance, the majority of cyberattacks in 2015 targeted small businesses. To prevent potential harm from these attacks, small businesses need to strengthen the front line of their defense: their employees. In some cases, such as with HIPAA compliance, it may be required.

The best tactic to shore up your online security is to make your security solutions as invisible as possible. If your security is seamless, employees won’t have to think about it, and their work will be conducted securely without effort on their part. However, this may not always be possible.

Educating your employees about security through fun and engaging security awareness training sessions is the next best step. Start with security basics and deliver the training throughout the year when new security situations arise or as refresher courses. Simplicity is the key because the easier the security solutions are, the easier it is for employees to learn and apply them.

Here are a few tips on how to better engage your employees in cybersecurity:

Conduct ‘Lunch and Learns’

Lunch and Learn sessions are a great way to instruct employees in security. Bringing a group of employees together for informal training over lunch makes the education convenient, fun, and accessible.

Use simple language

The language used in the training should be simple and jargon-free to prevent any confusion. Employees need to find it easy to implement security solutions and not be discouraged by overly technical language.

Teach the basics of risk assessment

It is always better to be proactive than reactive. Risk assessment helps businesses stay one step ahead of potential security problems by determining and evaluating the vulnerability of your organization against cybersecurity threats.

Conducting a risk assessment of your business helps employees understand and identify assets that are at risk. Once you’ve conducted this assessment, you and your employees can prepare the most effective response should there ever be a security breach.

Well-trained employees who are engaged with your security policies are the strongest asset a business can have when it comes to maintaining online security, and education is the main step to creating a security-conscious work culture. By conducting regular employee training sessions that are easy to understand and apply, you emphasize the importance of cybersecurity while providing the most current tools to sustain and protect your business.