In the last 12 months, many victims have been taken by cybercrime. A breach at Equifax exposed the personal data of 145 million people. Ransomware like WannaCry and Bad Rabbit pervaded, hitting hundreds of thousands of machines across a multitude of countries and sectors. A security oversight at a Republican data firm resulted in the divulgence of nearly 200 million American voting records, and Uber, having already paid a hundred thousand dollars in hush money, confessed that hackers had gotten their hands on the data of 57 million of their users.
What’s worse is that threats to our digital security show no sign of stopping. Technology is developing faster than our ability to secure it, and so, we can only expect the number of dangers occupying the digital space to increase. It’s also worth considering that with GDPR coming into force this May, breaches in the future will undoubtedly incur penalties. This being said, it's not all bad news. Within the disarray, opportunity presents itself.
Those who can be seen to take data protection seriously will have a huge advantage in building strong and long-lasting relationships with partners, suppliers and consumers. After all, trust is in short demand. Organisations are very wary of extending their network due to fear of third-party breaches, and consumers are increasingly unwilling to disclose personal information. As such, effective digital security is a very formidable asset which can allow your business to stand out as a worthy ally in an environment of mistrust.
Ultimately, the adoption of new technologies invites fresh threat, and so, it is essential that businesses respond swiftly and effectively. As a company, investing in education now will only serve to increase your capacity to navigate the digital space unscathed, and distinguish yourselves from those who cannot do so. Importantly though, the buck doesn’t start and stop with the IT department. The entirety of your workforce, both senior management and your more junior staff, are equally and individually responsible for ensuring a company’s digital security.
Whilst senior management lay claim to the most lucrative information for hackers, and therefore have the heaviest obligation to protect it, they also have an equal, if not greater, duty to provide their team with digital safety training. Every single individual within an organisation represents a potential point of vulnerability; in fact, many security breaches originate and escalate from junior levels. As such, it’s not unreasonable to expect each individual within your organisation to take responsibility for digital security, and it’s therefore crucial to equip your staff with the understanding to shoulder that responsibility.
Every member of staff, even the tech-savvy and diligent, need to understand the anatomy of a hack, how hackers can manipulate them into disclosing sensitive information and performing harmful actions, and the various exploitative ways in which hackers can cash in on their slightest misjudgements. From here, your people will be better placed to detect and evade even the shadiest of malicious ventures.
Similarly, it’s important to help your staff recognise the risk they take when using weak and recycled passwords, and instruct them towards practising effective password creation and management. By doing so, they will be further qualified to properly fortify their digital presence.
The near future should make any sensible stakeholder nervous, but by educating your whole workforce about the conduct and severity of the threats that lurk within the ones and zeros, and advocating simple behavioural changes accordingly, digital security can be assured. At Circus Street, we can help you do just that.
To find out some more information, contact us.