Essential Cyber Security Awareness Courses your Employees should do in 2019

December 17, 2018 2:57 pm Geraldine Strawbridge

2018 has been the year that propelled cyber security into the spotlight. The increasing severity and frequency of cyber-attacks has demonstrated that organisations can no longer be reactive in their approach to cyber security.

Unfortunately, the common thread running through the majority of all cyber-attacks is human error. Over 90% of all successful cyber-attacks are a result of information unknowingly provided by employees, and because of a lack of cyber security awareness, organisations are risking their reputation, consumer trust and financial fall-out when employees mishandle sensitive data.

Given the increasing complexity of threats, it’s vital that organisations invest in effective cyber security awareness training to ensure that staff are trained with the necessary experience to deal with any situations that may arise.

The most effective way to train staff on the evolving threat landscape is through engaging and relevant cyber security awareness training. Every employee needs to become aware of the potential threats they could face, whether it’s from a phishing email, malicious software, poor password practice or internet safety.

Incorporating a cyber security awareness training programme for your staff is critical to your organisation’s security infrastructure. It will ensure that employees are armed with all the knowledge they need to safeguard sensitive company data.

 Top Cyber Security Courses 2019

It can be difficult to know which training is the most relevant for your workforce, so we’ve listed 5 of the most essential Cyber Security Awareness Courses your employees should do in 2019.

1. Compliance

The recent implementation of the GDPR has highlighted the importance of demonstrating 100% compliance with key policies and procedures. Non-compliance can have very serious consequences for a business which includes fines, damage to reputation and an increased risk of cyber-attacks.

Compliance training is key to ensuring that staff are knowledgeable about company policies, regulations and the legal requirements that apply to their day to day role.

Compliance training has a bad rep for being dull and boring but through the use of effective and engaging eLearning, employees gain a better understanding of the significance of their actions with regards to information handling.

Compliance eLearning provides employees with the knowledge and skills they need to meet stringent regulatory requirements. Through a combination of eLearning assessments, storytelling and scenario-based training, users develop a greater understanding of their role and how they can carry it out in a manner that increases efficiency and productivity.

 2. Social Engineering

Social Engineering has been used in more than 66% of all cyber-attacks and it remains one of the most popular ways to trick employees into disclosing sensitive information.

Rather than use traditional hacking attacks, cybercriminals take advantage of our trusting human nature to trick us into breaking normal security practices. These types of attacks come in many different forms, but the common denominator with them all is their exploitation of human behaviour.

Common social engineering attack methods include; phishing, smishing, vishing, baiting, whaling, spear-phishing and tailgating. Criminals have successfully used these tactics to gain unauthorised access to computer networks and steal sensitive data.

To ensure that your employees can effectively recognise these threats, it’s vital they receive specific training on social engineering and the different methods used to attack. The training will help staff defend your organisation and reduce the likelihood of a breach.

3. Essential Phishing Awareness

The majority of all cyber-attacks can be traced back to a phishing email and despite a wealth of information about these online scams, employees are still getting duped by these emails on a daily basis.

The phishing scams that we’re seeing today are sophisticated, well-crafted and can appear almost indistinguishable from genuine company correspondence. The crooks have used every tool at their disposal to trick as many people as they can into falling for their scams. Some of the more polished scams include spoofed email addresses, an SSL certified website, branded logos and not a spelling mistake in site.

All of this hard work is worth it if cybercriminals can trick just one employee into clicking on a malicious link. One small human error could result in a massive loss of sensitive data and bring an organisation to its knees.

It’s vital that businesses take steps to ensure they are doing all they can to educate staff on the dangers of a phishing attack. Training employees how to effectively recognise a phishing attempt is key in mitigating the risk to your organisation.

4. Dangers of Malicious Software

Malware (short for malicious software) has become one of the biggest online threats and it’s been used in some of the world’s largest cyber-attacks including WannaCry, NotPetya and Cryptolocker.

Malware is typically installed on a computer when a user clicks on a link, downloads a malicious attachment or opens a rogue software programme. Once installed, attackers can use the malware to spy on online activities, steal personal and financial information or hack into other systems.

This form of attack has proved hugely profitable and it’s becoming more sophisticated as criminals blend old and new variants to cause maximum damage. Malicious Software poses a serious threat to an organisation’s security so it’s vital that employees receive full training on the different types of malware, how it works and how it can be used to infiltrate a network.

5. Information Security

Information is one of the most important assets that an organisation holds therefore It’s vital that it’s protected, and the correct measures are put in place to mitigate the risk of any data loss.

One of the major threats to an organisation’s information security is a lack of employee awareness. Many employees are simply unaware of the value of the everyday data they have access to. Without the proper precautions in place, information and assets can easily be accessed and taken by an unauthorised person.

Whether it’s an employee innocently holding a door open for a visitor, a password scribbled on post-it, login details left in a notepad or important client information stored away in an unlocked drawer, all this information can be extremely valuable to a criminal. 

Employees play an important role in safeguarding the information security of the company so it’s vital they receive regular training on what measures they can take to protect this valuable corporate data.

MetaCompliance specialises in creating the best eLearning and cyber security awareness training available on the market. We’ve taken the most up to date research on eLearning methods and combined this with creativity, expert knowledge and innovative software to deliver effective and engaging content that helps businesses stay cybersecure and compliant. Contact us for further information on our extensive range of cyber security awareness courses.