IT Security Best Practices
Cyber Security

IT Security Best Practices for Employees

Are you convinced that your employees need to be educated about the importance of IT security requirements?

Developing a culture of proper security is made possible by IT security education. From the utmost level of the executive team to entry-level employees, the employees should be aware of IT protection at all levels of the business.

Perhaps you framed IT policies for your coworkers if you are a frontline employee responsible for IT security. Still, you must stay diligent in safeguarding your company’s data and network, even with these protections.

Does it make any difference? Hackers often target large corporations, but SMBs have a greater appeal to them. Who is responsible? It’s easier for hackers to infiltrate SMEs because they have access to the fewer controls and tighter budgets these businesses offer.

In 2016, Poneman reported that 55% of businesses with less than 1000 employees experienced significant information security breaches. Almost $6 trillion in damage is projected to occur by 2021 due to the threat.

IT security is assuredly enhanced through proper training. A secure battlefront to support underlying security measures requires more than security policies, physical security, firewalls, and other technical precautions. Educating employees also improves their visibility and safety.

It’s not always easy to provide IT security training, but it’s crucial. Natural barriers are often substituted for adequately teaching safety measures, which will save millions as cleanup costs. Despite the best security software and comprehensive policies in your company, your actions play an essential role in ensuring data protection. Consider that a single employee accidentally shares sensitive company information on a smartphone or clicks on an infected link that results in a data breach.

When you start a company, it is wise to understand and learn IT security best practices. Learning about the little things can help to improve your organisation’s IT security.

SME’s with limited resources often struggle with budget constraints, time constraints, a narrow view of IT security, and corrupt practices due to lack of IT security. In most cases, companies can understand what they need from an IT perspective when identifying how to tackle these roadblocks.

What is the current state of your employee’s knowledge of IT? 

During the transition from 2020 to 2021, most industrial employees must somehow have acquired knowledge about IT security, ransomware, and cyberattacks.

Developing a security awareness program to support current IT needs would further enhance the knowledge. Determine the degree of preparedness for IT threats in your company before developing any training.

Before advanced training gets implemented, the baseline needs to be established first. Enterprises usually begin with a prewritten test and activities for general information, followed by the necessary sense. Adding a real-life situation will make your lesson more effective. A good example would be to carry out an indoor phishing attack to see how employees react. This experiment will assess your team’s readiness to deal with external cyber threats.

The security awareness training can also incorporate quizzes or polls to determine what topics employees would like to be covered.

1. Threat security awareness programs as a workshop 

Once you find out your employees’ baseline, you would want to focus and target the areas of the organisation. Developing actual security content that is tailored to the organisation’s structure beyond the quiz. Make the training programs more effective to achieve this. By building focus modules on the gamut of security, you can accomplish this.

2. Incorporating interactive training in security management  

The audience dislikes lectures that are too long. Those days are gone when smartwatches came with lessons in the form of a speaker. During training, active processes get used to learn and share information. It is easier for employees to retain information when they sit through purely informational training sessions.

3. Developing a security culture

Observing acceptable security practices has become part of our psyche. Employers, irrespective of their position, practice what they preach at home in the workplace as well. CISCO is convinced that developing a positive culture will help ensure its security.

The purpose of establishing a culture is not only to make employees aware of risks but also to enable them to spot them. Security awareness is not always understood by employees when there are large abstracts to read.

Knowing security issues in their daily actions will increase their chances of noticing potential vulnerabilities. Through the proper strategies and implementation of the approaches, every staff member gets brought into security channels.

Businesses can make sure their employees are aware of IT security by taking the following steps:

4. Strengthening passwords through training  

Avast recently reported that 83% of Americans use weak passwords, which make them easier to crack. In addition, 50% of people with access to the internet use the same password for multiple accounts.

Getting access to the device or signing in to work-related applications requires passwords. There are many things to remember, such as creating generic passwords that get broken quickly. Only by educating employees about the importance of passwords can employees become informed about IT security awareness.

Security experts found that “123456” and “password” are commonly used web passwords. Although they are easy to remember, they may also be vulnerable to hacking. In another report, 92 per cent of people used simple passwords to access multiple accounts, exposing all of their data.

Protecting sensitive information from fraudsters is primarily done using passwords. Explain how to set strong passwords that incorporate a combination of letters, numbers, and special characters.

5. Verifying user identity using multiple factors 

An employee uses multi-factor authentication or two-factor authentication (2FA) to log in to a corporate intranet by receiving a code via their phone, email, or mobile app. The users are only authorised after they enter the code. Two-factor authentication (2FA) prevents a 3rd party to involve login information and use it.

According to the Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report, data breach investigations in 2020 were primarily accomplished by hackers using stolen login credentials.

Security breaches involve compromised passwords 80% of the time.

Individuals who receive a code but do not intend to log in immediately become aware of the unauthorised access. In this way, you can protect your system further against unwanted acts.

6. Implementing email, internet, and social media policies

The habits of employees can leave the company open to malicious software, which attacks company apps and social accounts. Ensure that your employees are trained on IT security within your company, including policies for authorised email, internet, and social media use.

Policies should govern link categories. Your antivirus program should identify malicious links if they originate from anonymous users or organisations. Please describe how your employees should use social media and the internet on their company devices.

7. Scanning & updating PCs frequently  

When workers do not scan the devices in-depth and update software regularly, even having antivirus software on PCs will not save them. Operating systems follow a similar approach. On their frequent updates, operating systems have security protocols that improve the protection system from attacks. Even so, those changes will not get reflected in the machines if they are not updated.

Ensure your employees can scan their devices for software and operating system issues. As a result, the software will be up-to-date with the latest and current threats, thereby protecting your pc from potential hazards.

8. Policy to secure the company data 

IT security is part of every organisation’s policy. The employees may not be aware of all the guidelines. Managing technology should be explained in the new homie’s information security training. After that, ensure all employees take current IT courses to be up to standard with data protection policies.

9. A reward program for employees 

Sharing user stories about how they identified malicious emails and were rewarded for doing so has prevented security issues. It sets a direct relation between IT leaders who should also empathise with employees who make mistakes. Many employees send or receive many emails per day, so ask them to avoid one among those challenging situations.

Although current educational methods are advanced, attacks continue to occur. By implementing continuous training programs, one can somewhat minimise the uncertain damage.

One of your successful business ventures can’t operate without the help of your employees. You can lose millions of dollars if you have untrained and negligent employees in your workplace. Therefore, every organisation must adopt a worthwhile IT security educational program that includes the essential guidelines needed to prevent future IT security incidents.

The organisation should also prepare periodic meetings, provide frequent reminders, and train new buddies on new or ongoing policies. NSWIT Support is always ready to assist you if you need guidance on the beginner’s step to educate your employees. Your business can become IT security-ready with a comprehensive IT security program, developing a continuous security program that syncs with emerging IT security issues.