Staff are the backbone of any organisation. They're the people who turn up in the morning, work long hours and dedicate their lives to their jobs. However, they're also privy to sensitive information, financial records and company secrets. Keeping that in mind, it's clear why hackers and malicious outsiders firmly have your staff in their crosshairs
Whilst we can't spend our lives living in fear, waiting for an attack to hit, we can ensure - at an organisational level - that we're all in the best possible place to ward off attacks from the get-go. In this week's blog, we're exploring how you can ensure your staff are cyber secure.
Here at Fifosys, cyber security is one of the topics that we'll continue to hammer home the importance of. And, in recent years, it's become something that frankly should concern all of us. At this point, if you're a business dealing with any form of sensitive data, it's gone beyond something you should try to tackle alone.
The complexity of threats isn't the only thing evolving either - the financial impact of a breach is too. Findings show that the cost of attacks is expected to reach $10.5 trillion annually by 2025 - up from $3 trillion in 2015. It's not just cyber attacks that are proving costly either. According to IBM, data breach costs rose from USD 3.86 million to USD 4.24 million - the highest the figure has been in the 17 years they've been tracking it.
With threats such as phishing, malware, ransomware, DDoS, zero-day exploits and Man in the Middle attacks on the rise, is the hybrid approach helping or hindering defences?
With the shift in working arrangements seeing widespread adoption, security has become even more prevalent for organisations. These days, your security remit expands beyond the four walls of your head office - or in some cases, collection of offices - and now includes the homes and personal networks of staff.
As staff work from home in some capacity - be it a day, two days or even five days a week - they're outside the direct oversight of your IT support teams if you've opted to go it alone without an MSP. Whilst hybrid working may offer countless benefits to the individual, it can mean IT is slower to deal with cyber threats and appropriately protect company information.
Equally, staff may fail to update software or operating systems, be sending data over insecure networks, or have an increased reliance on email and online messages. Such practices have seen an increase in threats, such as phishing and malware.
The UK Government's Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2022 showed that "31% of businesses and 26% of charities estimate they were attacked at least once a week. One in five businesses (20%) and charities (19%) say they experienced a negative outcome as a direct consequence of a cyber attack, while one-third of businesses (35%) and almost four in ten charities (38%) experienced at least one negative impact.."
Equally, findings from the 2021 survey stated, "other quantitative and qualitative evidence from the study suggests that the risk level is potentially higher than ever under COVID-19 and that businesses are finding it harder to administer cyber security measures."
So, despite an increase in threats and successful attacks, security is still not the number one concern. So, is it really that important?
Aside from the financial implications listed earlier, security should concern you for numerous reasons.
For a business operating in the 2020s, cyber security should already be a topic of boardroom-level discussions. Not only do attacks come with a direct economic cost, but they can spell disaster for a company.
Costs associated with an attack include theft of corporate information, disruption to trading, or even repairs to affected systems. But, above the physical and monetary impact, cyber security breaches can also cause reputational damage. As seen in the Talk Talk breach of 2015, almost 100,000 customers moved away from the ISP following a data breach.
Findings have shown that 44% of UK consumers will hesitate to do business with the breached entity for several months, whilst 41% will never return.
It's no secret the cost of living is soaring, and if you can't afford to lose almost half your customer base, you may want to give cyber security a renewed sense of purpose.
Studies have shown it may not matter how much you invest in state-of-the-art defences, monitoring systems or network security tools, as your staff could be the key to your network.
The same findings have shown how human error was a major contributing cause in 95% of all breaches - or, better put, 19 out of 20 attacks analysed shared the same denominator - humans.
This article isn't designed to make you doubt your staff or how hard they work - as mentioned earlier, they're the backbone of your organisation. Instead, it should show how complex and sophisticated attacks have become that they can fool 95% of people.
Thankfully, the solution doesn't have to be daunting - or complex. The answer can be found in the form of training.
Fifosys has a comprehensive range of awareness solutions to educate and give users the knowledge to protect themselves and their employers.
We provide GDPR, Social Engineering, Data security and cyber security awareness training. These sessions vary from one to many training sessions to bite-sized videos and online assessments. These can be either one-off exercises or re-occurring campaigns with continual engagement and reporting to help you deliver success, maximise uptake and keep you secured.
At Fifosys, we've been passionate about security for over two decades - and we have no plans to change this approach. So, if you're concerned you have holes in your defences, we have state of the art monitoring offerings and dedicated security experts who will work with you to tailor our services to your organisation's needs.
If that's not enough, we can also carry out SEAT sessions, help improve staff awareness through free webinars, or even have your dedicated point of contact send over regular emails and literature. You can never stop learning, especially when it comes to cyber security and your organisation. Partnering with the right MSP can unlock a peace of mind you never knew possible, and it can start today - all you have to do is reach out for a free consultation.
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