Technological advancements have changed the nature of how we perform work, resulting in seamless ease and efficiency. Now, the concept of a digital remote working is a reality. But this capability comes with challenges that call for robust defense mechanisms, making the term ‘'cybersecurity” enormously relevant. The pandemic has furthered escalated the threat of cyber-attacks and data breaches, putting many organizations at risk. As a result, various companies are faced with the challenge of running safe operations in the new scenario.
Why cybersecurity training?
The pandemic has thrown in a catalyst that gives rise to a new breed of cybercriminals and masterminds that are after organizations with security loopholes. Recent studies have shown that human negligence and lack of sufficient cybersecurity training account for over 90% of data breaches across organizations. It appears that cybercriminals are quick to spot employee security inaptitude and leverage this factor to their full advantage. They are able to break into an organization's infrastructure by luring gullible employees into leaking access via sophisticated efforts such as Malware and spear phishing.
Therefore, organizations should ensure mandatory up-to-date cybersecurity training for employees through the latest tools and software. It should be an integral aspect of organizational security protocol for employees to be well-versed in various cybersecurity practices. To that end, integrating a continuous training module is the need of the hour in order to help an enterprise's general workforce in neutralizing day-to-day cybersecurity threats.
As such, a holistic approach towards that end goal will incorporate not just a persistent, continual training program but also real-time simulations. The thing with simulation modules is that it presently accounts for one of the best cybersecurity practices to channel a hands-on experiential training methodology to employees. In other words, this approach is, by far, the best training module that can prime cybersecurity teams to neutralize incoming threats.
Incorporating new-age cyber technologies per se is not enough
Having the tools is one thing and being able to leverage them is completely another story. Nothing of value lies in having sophisticated tools if employees are not trained in leveraging and optimizing the same. As such, an efficient security infrastructure typically entails two elements – resources/tools and trained employees. It is essential that employees are groomed with the skills to make optimum use of tools. Most importantly, they should be able to recognize a threat when encountering one.
At the end of the day, continual cybersecurity training takes care of the above-discussed objectives – recognition of threats and capitalization of relevant tools. That said, cybersecurity training is not something that can be stressed enough. There is no redundancy to it because the bigger the company, the more vulnerable it is to phishers and cyber masterminds, making employee training an evergreen imperative.
Remote working is set to be the new normal in the post-Pandemic Era
Times are changing, and we are entering the door to a new era wherein things such as remote work will be a standard operation. To that end, a large amount of priority will be directed towards the management of the remote workforce and the cybersecurity thereof. This means that we are looking forward to the radical implementation of cybersecurity strategies such as Zero Trust Security, Automation, and AI-assisted Cybersecurity.
Therefore, an enterprise will require a workforce that can adeptly comply with such new regulations, making cybersecurity awareness all the more relevant. To that end, it does not take a shrewd analyst to realize that remote working in the post-pandemic world will entail navigating through cybersecurity procedures and rendering work in compliance with the same. By now, it is clear that things such as intensive cybersecurity training will that precedence in the new scenario and it will be prudent to acknowledge the new changes now and be prepared for tomorrow.
The end goal
Remote work essentially involves a home setup that features a network connection and devices used to gain access to confidential corporate data. This is where cybersecurity enters the picture since there is a need for vital security mechanisms such as VPNs, antivirus, firewalls, and other intrusion prevention systems. Unfortunately, many enterprises are prone to security inadequacy by failing to direct enough emphasis towards measures vis-à-vis security of residential environments where employees work remotely. As a result, there is an increasing loophole that attracts malicious elements.
To that end, cybersecurity training of employees is the answer. In light of the increasing cybersecurity threats, it is only logical to train the employee on basic security practices. Employees of an enterprise in the post-COVID era should be groomed in skills that enable them to maintain the security of their devices, use complex passwords, and reduce cyber risks through the use of VPN. Also, it is important that employees have the efficiency to develop and implement recovery mechanisms, and operation continuity plans in the event of a data breach on a remote workstation. As technology evolves at a rapid pace, it is essential that a company's cybersecurity architecture plans with a response to the expansive threat matrix at large.
The author is Managing Director for India/South Asia and ASEAN at Cyberbit. Views are personal.