How often Should Your Employees Receive Training on Cyber Security Awareness?


Your annual phishing training is complete. This included teaching employees how to identify fake emails. It's an euphoric feeling! Unfortunately, this feeling only lasts five or six months as one click on a link can lead to ransomware infection within your company.

Why must you revisit the same information year after year? Security breaches continue to plague your organization. Your employees lack adequate training on security protocols.

Training alone may not be sufficient to alter behavior; it's easy for them to forget what they have learned over a period of months.

How often should your team receive training to boost their cybersecurity awareness? Training every four months is ideal, as this will enable consistent improvements in IT security.

Why Is Cybersecurity Awareness Training Recommended Every Four Months?

A study recently presented at the USENIX SOUPS cybersecurity conference suggested this recommendation stems from where? it examined users' ability to detect phishing emails and training frequency. It also examined IT security measures as well as phishing awareness training programs.

Employees were required to take phishing identification tests at various intervals.

Four months, six months, eight months and ten months--whichever comes first?

Four months after training, employees were still able to identify and avoid clicking on phishing emails. After six months, however, scores started declining with each additional month that passed since beginning their training program. It is believed that these scores will continue to decrease with further exposure during this period.

Employees need to receive ongoing training and education regarding security awareness in order to remain prepared. Doing this will enable them to be an asset in your cybersecurity strategy.

Tips for Fostering a Cybersecure Culture: What and How to Train Employees

A cybersecure culture is the gold standard in security awareness training. In such an atmosphere, everyone understands the criticality of protecting sensitive data. Be wary of phishing scams and make sure your passwords are secure at all times.

Unfortunately, according to the 2021 Sophos threat report, this isn't necessarily the case for most organizations. A lack of security practices poses one of the greatest threats to network security.

According to the report,
"a failure to prioritize one or two aspects of security hygiene is often at the root cause of some of the most destructive attacks we've examined."

Companies' risks are greatly minimized when their employees receive adequate training. Not every day needs to be spent doing full-day cybersecurity training, however; mixing up delivery methods makes for better results.

These are just a few examples of engaging ways to teach cybersecurity skills to employees. You can incorporate these into your training program:

  • Self-service videos are sent out once a month for your convenience.

  • Roundtable discussions with teams

  • Consider including security tips in company newsletters and messaging channels.

  • Experience an IT training session with an IT pro

  • Simulated Phishing Tests

  • Cybersecurity Posters

  • Celebrate Cybersecurity Awareness Month in October!

Phishing is an essential topic to cover when conducting training, but it's not the only one. These are other vital topics you should include in your awareness training as well.

Phishing via Email, Text & Social Media

Email-based phishing remains the most prevalent type. However, SMS phishing ("smishing") as well as social media-based phishing have seen an uptick. These scams can be highly dangerous so employees must be made aware of them.

Credential & Password Security

Many businesses have made the transition to cloud-based platforms for most of their data and processes. Unfortunately, it has become an easy target for hackers to access SaaS cloud tools, leading credential theft to rise dramatically.

Credential theft is the leading cause of data breaches worldwide. It's an essential topic to discuss with your team. Stress the importance of password security and teaching them how to create strong passwords. Encourage them to explore tools such as a password manager for businesses in order to better protect their sensitive information.

Mobile Device Security

Much of office work is now done through mobile devices, which make it convenient to read and respond to emails from anywhere. Unfortunately, companies often overlook good mobile applications when selecting software solutions.

Employees with access to business data and apps should review security requirements. This includes locking their phone with a passcode and making sure it's kept up-to-date.

Data Security

Data privacy regulations have become increasingly stringent over the years. Companies now find themselves having to adhere to multiple data privacy regulations at once.

Training employees on data handling and security procedures is a wise idea. Doing so will reduce the chances of your business becoming a victim to a data breach or leak that could result in costly fines for noncompliance.

Are you struggling to keep your team trained in cybersecurity?

Take the burden off your shoulders and let our certified cybersecurity professionals train your staff. Through our engaging training program, we can make a real impact by changing their behavior towards cyber hygiene.