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7 Steps to Improve Your Cybersecurity Awareness Program

Unfortunately, many security awareness programs are ineffective and provide leadership with a false sense of security. What is even worse, many organizations do not have a security awareness program and fail to realize that they may be targeted daily by cyber criminals.

  • Are you one of the many organizations struggling to run an effective cybersecurity awareness program?
  • Do you even have a cybersecurity awareness program?

We hope this information helps you build and maintain a successful and effective cybersecurity awareness program.

Clearly Document Your Security Policies

Make sure your security policies are clearly documented, easily accessible by all employees, and that employees are informed of the policies. What good are policies if employees are not aware or do not know where to access them?

Identify Your Risky Departments

Ensure that you are targeting all of your departments with effective security awareness training.

Identify your top risk departments. It may not be as effective to tell every department to only open internal emails. It may be normal for the HR department to receive external email from job seekers. It may be normal for the Benefits department to receive external email from retired employees.

Identify Your Risky Employees

Ensure that you are also targeting all of your employees with effective security awareness training.

Identify your top risk employees. The same security training may not be as effective for all employees. If you find that security training is not effective for some employees, consider investing time into why. Do not assume that it is always the employees’ fault that your training is not effective. It is possible that some employees could benefit from alternate security training methods.

Consider Tailored Training or Alternative Training Methods

Identifying risky departments and employees can help you tailor your security training. Consider role-specific security training. It’s also possible that some employees just need more frequent security training than others. By considering all of this, you can make sure that an effective security awareness program is delivered across the entire organization.

Review On-Boarding Processes for New Employees & Contractors

Security awareness needs to be included in the onboarding process for everyone. This includes all new-hire and contractors. Many times, new employees fall for phishing emails, putting well-established organizations at risk. Taking a deeper look at the security awareness programs often reveal that security is not included in the initial onboarding process or that the new-hire was later scheduled for security awareness training within their first 30 days, which is often too late.

Some companies put their contractors through a different (and often streamlined) onboarding process. This streamlined onboarding process may not highlight security awareness in as much detail, even though the contractor may have more access to computer systems and networks than a typical new-hire.

Keep your onboarding processes consistent when it comes to security awareness. Make sure that new employees understand the importance of protecting the organization and its assets.

Improve Your Internal Phishing Campaigns

Are your employees not clicking on your monthly in-house phishing campaigns, but they are clicking on real phishing campaigns? Are you wondering where your security awareness program went wrong?

Often times, companies send simple and generic in-house phishing emails, hoping to have a low click rate. They are hoping this low click rate will result in “good” phishing metrics to share with leadership. The problem is that cyber criminals want a high click rate and they are sending sophisticated and targeted phishing emails.

Require Independent Security Assessments

Many companies benefit from independent, third-party security assessments to help measure the true effectiveness of their security awareness program. Central InfoSec team members have helped organizations drop their click-rates drop from over 50% to less than 1%.

Free Consultation with Central InfoSec

Central InfoSec specializes in tailored phishing services, to help you test and measure the effectiveness of your security awareness program. By offering managed phishing services, your organization can receive tailored phishing campaigns, historical reporting, and metrics.

Central InfoSec also offers a variety of professional security services to help you test, measure, and improve your overall security posture. Security services offered include red teaming, penetration testing, vulnerability assessments, web application testing, managed phishing, and other tailored security services to help you reduce risk to your organization.

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