Strengthening Your Business: Building a Culture of Cyber Awareness with Lewis IT

Strengthening Your Business: Building a Culture of Cyber Awareness with Lewis IT
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In today's digital world, cyberattacks are a constant threat. Phishing emails, malware downloads, and data breaches can cripple businesses and devastate personal lives. Employee error is often the gateway for these threats, largely due to a lack of cybersecurity awareness. Without proper knowledge, employees might click on phishing links or create weak passwords, making your business vulnerable. It’s estimated that 95% of data breaches are due to human error.

The good news? These mistakes are preventable. Building a strong culture of cyber awareness can significantly reduce your risks. Lewis IT is here to help you create that culture, ensuring your business stays protected.

Why Culture Matters

Think of your organization's cybersecurity as a chain. Strong links make it unbreakable, while weak links make it vulnerable. Employees are the links in this chain. By fostering a culture of cyber awareness, you turn each employee into a strong link, making your entire organization more secure. Lewis IT can guide you through this process, offering expert advice and solutions tailored to your needs.

Easy Steps, Big Impact

Building a cyber awareness culture doesn't require complex strategies or expensive training programs. Here are some simple steps you can take to make a big difference, with Lewis IT supporting you every step of the way.

1. Start with Leadership Buy-in

Security shouldn't be an IT department issue alone. Get leadership involved! When executives champion cyber awareness, it sends a powerful message to the organization. Leadership can show their commitment by:

  • Participating in training sessions
  • Speaking at security awareness events
  • Allocating resources for ongoing initiatives

2. Make Security Awareness Fun, Not Fearful

Cybersecurity training doesn't have to be dry and boring. Use engaging videos, gamified quizzes, and real-life scenarios to keep employees interested and learning. Lewis IT can provide interactive modules and animated videos that explain complex security concepts in a clear and relatable way.

3. Speak Their Language

Cybersecurity terms can be confusing. Communicate in plain language, avoiding technical jargon. Focus on practical advice employees can use in their everyday work. Lewis IT can help craft easy-to-understand guidelines, making cybersecurity accessible for everyone.

4. Keep it Short and Sweet

Don't overwhelm people with lengthy training sessions. Opt for bite-sized training modules that are easy to digest and remember. Use microlearning approaches delivered in short bursts throughout the workday. Lewis IT can help design and implement these effective training modules.

5. Conduct Phishing Drills

Regular phishing drills test employee awareness and preparedness. Send simulated phishing emails and track who clicks. Use the results to educate employees on red flags and reporting suspicious messages. After a phishing drill, dissect the email with employees, highlighting the telltale signs that helped identify it as fake. Lewis IT can run these drills and provide detailed feedback to improve awareness.

6. Make Reporting Easy and Encouraged

Employees need to feel comfortable reporting suspicious activity without fear of blame. Create a safe reporting system and acknowledge reports promptly. You can do this through:

  • A dedicated email address
  • An anonymous reporting hotline
  • A designated security champion employees can approach directly

Lewis IT can help set up and manage these reporting systems, ensuring they are user-friendly and effective.

7. Security Champions: Empower Your Employees

Identify enthusiastic employees who can become "security champions." These champions can answer questions from peers and promote best practices through internal communication channels, keeping security awareness top of mind. Security champions foster a sense of shared responsibility for cybersecurity within the organization. Lewis IT can assist in training and supporting these champions.

8. Beyond Work: Security Spills Over

Cybersecurity isn't just a work thing. Educate employees on how to protect themselves at home too. Share tips on strong passwords, secure Wi-Fi connections, and avoiding public hotspots. Employees who practice good security habits at home are more likely to do so in the workplace. Lewis IT can provide resources and training for personal cybersecurity practices.

9. Celebrate Success

Recognize and celebrate employee achievements in cyber awareness. Did someone report a suspicious email? Did a team achieve a low click-through rate on a phishing drill? Publicly acknowledge their contributions to keep motivation high. Recognition can be a powerful tool, reinforcing positive behavior and encouraging continued vigilance. Lewis IT can help develop recognition programs that fit your company's culture.

10. Bonus Tip: Leverage Technology

Technology can be a powerful tool for building a cyber-aware culture. Use online training platforms that deliver microlearning modules and track employee progress. Schedule automated phishing simulations regularly to keep employees on their toes. Tools that bolster employee security include:

  • Password managers
  • Email filtering for spam and phishing
  • Automated rules, such as Microsoft’s Sensitivity Labels
  • DNS filtering

Lewis IT offers a range of technology solutions to support your cybersecurity efforts, ensuring you have the right tools in place.

The Bottom Line: Everyone Plays a Role

Building a culture of cyber awareness is an ongoing process. Repetition is key! Regularly revisit these steps, keep the conversation going, and make security awareness a natural part of your organization's DNA. Cybersecurity is a shared responsibility. By fostering a culture of cyber awareness, your business benefits. You equip everyone in your organization with the knowledge and tools to stay safe online. Empowered employees become your strongest defense against cyber threats.

Contact Lewis IT to Discuss Security Training & Technology

Need help with email filtering or security rules setup? Would you like someone to handle your ongoing employee security training? Lewis IT can help you reduce your cybersecurity risk in many ways. Contact us today to learn more about our comprehensive cybersecurity solutions. Together, we can build a robust culture of cyber awareness that keeps your business secure.

Article used with permission from The Technology Press.

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Jamie Larson
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