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Are Your Employees A Cybersecurity Risk?

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Human error may be the single, most significant vulnerability in any security system. Therefore recognizing this threat is vital to implementing adequate security of any description, especially cybersecurity.

Through understanding human shortcomings, you can work to counterbalance them and by doing so, protect your environment. Here is some guidance to help you tackle the cybersecurity threat.

How To Deal With Human Error

Take a three-pronged approach to minimise human errors. Automate as many processes as you can get away with and review audits with human surveillance as a backup to your automation, rather than as your first line of defence.

Peer review can be layered. One person may make a mistake (or be a bad actor). Two or more people, however, are more likely to pick up on the error (or malpractice). Obviously, this has to be balanced with the need to keep the business running smoothly.

Keep employees at the top of their game with instruction and training. Take every opportunity to update staff on new cybersecurity threats and join cybersecurity groups for role play and knowledge transfer.

Automating processes

At the end of the day, most cybersecurity revolves around the concept of access control, albeit in different ways. Here are some examples of how this can work in practice even at small businesses.

Firewalls

Use firewalls to control what external traffic is allowed access to your internal network. They can also scan internal traffic for signs of suspicious behaviour.

WAFs

Web applications firewalls control what external traffic is allowed access to your website.

Anti-virus

Use anti-virus programs to control what apps are allowed to access your devices, e.g. computers, tablets and mobiles.

Email filters

Manage phishing and SPAM with email filters, so the only the useful emails are allowed to reach your inbox.

Logins

Use passwords to control who gets access to what applications (and to what extent).

All of these processes need to be set up appropriately. After that, however, they should just need monitoring and updating when necessary.

Peer Review Processes

Ideally, all work should be double-checked by a human. All work does not, however, need to be checked to the same degree.

For example, some tasks may just require periodic spot-checking. Some jobs may need to be double-checked by a colleague or supervisor before they are agreed to be complete.

Some tasks may need to be checked by more people at a more senior level. The critical point is to make sure the human checks and balances reflect the task’s level of security.

Employee Training

There are three vital elements of suitable employee training. The first is working out what any given employee needs to know. The second is working out the best way to communicate this information to them. The third is making sure they understand why this training matters.

Working Out What Employees Need To Know

The more employees you have, the less likely it is that a “one-size-fits-all” training strategy is going to deliver the best results. Instead, look at each job role and think about what an employee needs to know to perform that role safely. Focus your training on that and only on that. This will prevent the employee from feeling either underprepared or overloaded.

Education

How to promote knowledge acquisition and transfer ultimately, comes down to cost. For example, do you hire cybersecurity professionals with the industry clarifications, or do you put your tech staff through professional certifications? For less specialised education courses involving offsite attendance as well as online learning, are the way forward.

All staff need some understanding of cyber threats and how to prevent them from accessing their devices and systems. Then for peace of mind, your business would have at its disposal a team of experts to see your business through the worst of an attack.

Summary

People are the biggest threat to security breaches, and this is why all staff need to know the basics of cybercrime and what to do to prevent an invasion via their device or actions. Businesses need to know they have support from their tech, hosting, and software suppliers should the worst happen and also ideally have their own team of experts at the ready.

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