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  • 10 October 2023
  • 5 min read

How can businesses best develop a culture of cyber security awareness among their employees?

In this edition of our Frequently Asked Series, we explore how best to develop a culture of cyber security awareness within your organisation.
How can businesses best develop a culture of cyber security awareness among their employees

With every passing day, cyber threats loom larger than ever before, and businesses find themselves at the frontlines of an ongoing battle for data security.

In this edition of our Frequently Asked Series, we explore how best to develop a culture of cyber security awareness within your organisation.

The importance of a strong cyber security awareness culture

Before delving into the best practices for creating a cyber security culture, let's understand why it's so crucial. A robust cyber security awareness culture brings a multitude of benefits:

1. Mitigating risks

A well-informed and vigilant workforce can identify and thwart potential cyber threats. Employees become the first line of defence against phishing attacks, malware, and other cyber risks.

2. Regulatory compliance

With the increasing number of data protection regulations like The GDPR, maintaining a cyber security culture ensures compliance and avoids costly penalties.

3. Protecting reputation

Data breaches can severely damage a company's reputation. A strong cyber security culture demonstrates commitment to security, enhancing trust among customers and partners.

4. Cost reduction

Preventing security incidents is more cost-effective than dealing with the aftermath of a breach, including legal fees, fines, and potential loss of business.

Best practices for creating a cyber security culture

Now, let's explore the actionable steps that cyber security decision-makers can take to cultivate a culture of cyber security awareness in their organisations:

1. Start with executives

Leadership buy-in is crucial. When top executives prioritise cyber security, it sets the tone for the entire organisation.

2. Include it in induction and refreshers

Cyber security training should be part of the onboarding process for new employees and regularly reinforced through refresher courses (see: Security Induction & 5 Golden Rules training)

3. Target your training

Tailor training to the specific needs of different departments. Customise content based on language to improve engagement levels and cast the widest net possible in your training campaign. Consider working with a bespoke awareness and training provider to build materials from the ground up with your content, brand, tone of voice and more.

4. Make it relatable

Engage employees with real-life scenarios and relatable examples. Show them how their actions can impact the organisation's security. Use a variety of channels to capture all of your employees as they will all learn differently. Some may relate to online training with quizzes whilst some may prefer interactive team activities, or some may prefer a webinar from an expert whilst others want a gamified experience – the key is to find what’s relatable to your employees.

5. Gamify your training

Gamification can make learning fun and engaging. Use gamified modules to test and reinforce cyber security knowledge. We produce games for phishing, passwords, cloud security, data classification, Christmas scams, remote working, ransomware, virtual reality and much more.

6. Focus on successes rather than failures

Celebrate and reward employees who exhibit strong security behaviours. Positive reinforcement can encourage others to follow suit. Implement a rewards system for employees who consistently adhere to cyber security best practices.

7. Frictionless reporting

Make it easy for employees to report suspicious activity or security concerns without fear of reprisal.

8. Have a security champion or 'culture' lead

Appoint individuals within the organisation to champion cyber security awareness initiatives and lead by example.

9. Regularly assessing/surveying behaviours and opinions

Gather feedback from employees through surveys to continually refine and improve your cyber security awareness program. TSC runs SABRs (Security Awareness and Behaviour Research) and mini-SABRs for large and medium-sized organisations to assess security behaviours, find gaps in security and advise on training and development changes.

10. Working with a tried and tested organisation like the security company

Partnering with an experienced organisation like TSC can be a game-changer in your quest to establish a cyber security culture. TSC offers a range of services including:

  • User training and education through eLearning and games: TSC provides comprehensive eLearning modules and gamified training experiences that keep employees engaged and informed. Many of our products are available and ready to go but we do offer the option of customising our products or working with us to build you bespoke training and awareness materials.
  • Digital and physical awareness materials: TSC offers a wide array of awareness materials, from digital resources to physical posters and flyers, to promote safer cyber security behaviours throughout the workplace.
  • Encouraging overall security culture change: TSC specialises in culture change initiatives, ensuring that your cyber security awareness efforts become ingrained in your company's DNA.

Creating a culture of cyber security awareness is an ongoing process that requires dedication, creativity, and the right partners. By following best practices and working with experienced partners, cyber security decision-makers can strengthen their organisation's defences against the ever-evolving cyber threats of today's world.

Don't wait until the next breach occurs – invest in a cyber security culture now to protect your organisation's future.

If you would like informationabout how The Security Company can help you to formulate a cyber security training and awareness program or if you would like a demo of our products and services ... please contact our Head of Business Development and Sales, Jenny Mandley.

The Security Company's vast library of customised and non-customised products and services are tailored for small, medium and large organisations and are available in a variety of languages. We also offer bespoke solutions for organisations that desire training and awareness materials built from the ground up.

Written by
Nas Ali
Cyber security and awareness content creator focused on emerging threats and the next wave of cyber security risks like AI, deepfakes and tech 4.0 initiatives in order to build towards a more secure organisational culture.
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