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Improving your Security Culture

You simply cannot implement technology to protect your organisation from every threat. Even the most sophisticated tools can be circumvented by malicious individuals with the right motivation and capability. Sometimes, it can be simply the right place, at the right time, enticing a user to click on an attachment, open a link or provide their credentials.

Therefore, one of the most effective controls is your security culture. Ensure your staff are provided with the right knowledge to identify suspicious requests, report them, and to be able to respond to them correctly when accidents happen in their busy working day.

Improving security culture is a multi-faceted effort, that includes, but is not limited to, the following key steps:

  1. Establishing clear policies and procedures: This includes having a well-defined security policy that outlines expected behaviours and procedures for employees to follow. Make them concise; giving users 300 pages of security requirements/demands will not improve your security culture. Often a quick reference guide pointing to more details documents is the most effective way to communicate.

  2. Providing training and education: Employees should be educated on the importance of security and provided with regular training on how to identify and prevent threats. Try to avoid annual “death by slides” training, at the very least do not rely solely on this approach, and consider a test-first approach, checking individual knowledge and only training those that need it.

  3. Simulate real-world threats: Phishing simulations are a great way to educate your staff through safe exercises. The results can demonstrate how well your culture is improving over time. As your security culture increases, so should the complexity of these simulations.

  4. Encouraging a security-aware culture: Encouraging employees to think about security in their daily work, and recognising and rewarding those who actively practice good security habits. Consider a rolling plan for awareness, with different topics each quarter, to keep the topic at the front of their minds.

  5. Communicate with employees: Communicate regularly with employees about security-related issues, such as updates to policies, new threats, and best practices for staying secure.

  6. Encourage queries and reporting: Encourage employees to ask questions, perhaps providing them with a mailbox they can email their questions to, or an online security centre with an Ask Us section. Ensure they know how to report security incidents or suspicious activities promptly.

  7. Lead by example: Leaders must lead by example, demonstrating the behaviours and attitudes that they expect from others. These behaviours should be visible to all employees.

  8. Continuously monitoring: Continuously monitoring and measuring the effectiveness of security culture, and making adjustments as needed to improve it.

ICA Consultancy has helped companies of various sizes and across various industries define, implement and run training and awareness exercises. We also partner with the leading security awareness platform providers and provide managed services around these with measurable, demonstrable results.

Talk to us today. We can help!


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