Can You Take Cyber Security Awareness Campaigns Too Far?

November 19, 2019 12:22 pm Natasha Deeney

It’s no secret that Cyber Security is an ever-growing issue as the cyber threat landscape continues to evolve and cyber criminals become increasingly sophisticated. In the past, companies had a small group of staff responsible for their IT and Cyber Security, however, in more recent years there has been a noticeable shift in mindset as cyber attacks continue to hit the headlines. 

Cyber Security remains a Challenge 

Despite recognising the importance of Cyber Security awareness, it remains a key challenge for organisations. Often an ad-hoc approach is adopted but it’s important to recognise that cyber awareness is more than just simulated phishing. Many organisations make the mistake of focusing on a single element of cyber awareness, such as phishing or eLearning. While these areas are a critical part of protecting a business, the most successful cyber awareness campaigns adopt a variety of engaging methods to educate employees on their role in keeping their organisation safe and secure.  

Engaging Employees with Cyber Awareness

The only thing worse than a dull Cyber Security training session is having to sit through it repeatedly, year after year. Instead, Cyber Security awareness training should be engaging and informative to ensure that staff understand what is required of them, and the importance of their role in safeguarding the organisation’s sensitive data. Campaign posters, eLearning courses, gamification, simulated phishing attacks, quizzes and pocket guides are effective resources to increase user awareness and compliance in an engaging way. As new types of threats emerge, your cyber awareness program should evolve and develop as well.

How to Create a Cyber Awareness Campaign That Gets Attention

Research suggests the collective global attention span is narrowing due to the amount of information that is presented to the public. This is the reason it is important to think outside the box to create an innovative cyber awareness campaign which is attention grabbing and thought provoking. So, can you take Cyber Security awareness campaigns too far? We don’t think so! Here are five ways to create an unmissable cyber awareness campaign:

Create cyber awareness posters that can’t be missed

Visual cues such as awareness posters are extremely effective and simple to execute. These provide a visual reminder of important security information for everyone within your organisation. To ensure your poster campaign is seen, you need to find the best spots to place them. Washroom advertising is an ideal medium to repackage key information into bite-sized pieces and reinforce your messaging whilst your audience is captive. There are few, if any, other places that allow you to deliver your message with so little distractions.

Create cyber champions 

Create advocates in your organisation to set an example and ‘fly the flag’ for Cyber Security. This gives employees a sense of responsibility and the opportunity to learn from their peers. Reward employees who detect hacks and breaches with recognition, trophies and prizes. 

Learn more about cyber champions

Don’t forget deterrents 

Placing a deterrent such as a ‘gnome of shame’ on an employee’s desk, imposing a charity donation for carelessness or getting employees to do the coffee run for their colleagues are effective ways to ensure that staff remain alert and vigilant to potential threats. To avoid such penalties, staff should practice simple Cyber Security tasks such as locking their computer screen, beware of phishing emails and never leave devices unattended. 

Think beyond the office

Run campaigns showing employees how to protect themselves in their personal lives as well as their professional lives. For example, how to protect their family, protect their social networks and secure their home devices. By engaging employees in the concept of Cyber Security, you can then broaden this to the wider organisation.

Make it Realistic

Real world examples bring issues and risks to life. Realistic scenarios in eLearning are effective because they can be easily recreated to mirror the learners’ work environment, enabling them to apply their cyber security awareness skills and emphasise your messaging. Employees understand that since this happened to someone in a similar situation, it could easily happen to them.

An Innovative Approach to Cyber Awareness

Metacompliance has created a cyber awareness campaign module to automate the life-cycle of your security awareness program. Our experts are continuously thinking outside-the-box to come up with engaging solutions to cyber awareness. Speak to our Security Awareness Advisors about how we can help to reduce the time and resources required to plan your annual awareness campaign.