It can happen in seconds. With one quick click of a mouse by an employee, a slight gap in security infrastructure, or a weak cyber security policy, a hacker can suddenly take down everything a business worked so hard to build and protect within their organization. The wreckage could include anything from shutting down company-wide internet access to stealing financial data.
Even manufacturers of power distribution units are victims of cyber crime, as attackers can hack into the power cables running data servers. Although this may seem like something out of a high-tech movie, hacking into these power cables is an advanced cyber risk that’s not going away. If anything, these criminals are at the top of their game and getting smarter.
Criminal Activity on the Rise
Security crime is forecasted to cost companies across the globe six trillion dollars by the year 2021. A company of any size without a solid cyber security policy that is also supported by a communications plan and governance team is putting their data at risk every single day. According to a video posted on May 7, a recent survey showed that artificial intelligence and machine learning advancements will support the rise of sophisticated criminal threats throughout the cyber world.
Employee Engagement Increases Safety
Internet searches for information about employees and their impact on cyber security will reveal that employees rarely think about cyber security threats with the exception of mandatory training. Specifically, a survey conducted of employees working in the public sector who have a government security clearance, don’t feel they need to be accountable when it comes to keeping data secure at work.
According to a survey of 1,000 employees just 13% of those surveyed think it’s up to them in any way to ensure the security of their employer’s private data or hardware. Even more worryingly, 48% of employees who responded to the survey feel no obligation to security.
With the managed services market forecasted to hit 170 billion USD across the globe in 2019, keeping informed of current technology solutions for business is crucial to keeping data safe. A mix of solutions may be required to fully keep information secure. A combination of cloud storage and working with outside tech support for small business may be ideal. Each organization should pursue its own custom needs. However, employees are one common and critical supporter needed to keep an organization’s information under the digital lock and key.
Although the cyber security policy review and accompanying mandatory training usually only happen once a year, it’s a serious topic and should be discussed on an on-going basis with all employees regardless of their role. Share examples throughout the year on how adhering to security saves money and give quantifiable insights into the costs incurred when security is breached. If possible, show how lowering costs associated with cyber attacks could help increase employee compensation and benefits.
You could also design a yearly security campaign, offer lunch and learns, invent internal trivia games, and award a cyber security employee of the month. You could even create an internal cybersecurity ambassador network consisting of people who volunteer and have the interest to raise awareness and promote the following of security guidelines.
Whatever you do, get away from a required test that takes place just once a year. Try to make following the cybersecurity policy part of employees’ yearly goals so it’s among their everyday thoughts at work.