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What employers should know about cybersecurity

Guest contributor Mara Calvello on July 10, 2019

Some of the biggest threats that employers face come in the form of cybersecurity attacks. With 67% of organizations reporting being breached at some point in the past, knowing how to protect your company and its data is more important than ever before. Doing so is also an effective way to maintain the trust of your customers and keep them coming back for your services or products.

So what are the top things employers need to know about cybersecurity? Here’s a list of what they should keep in mind.

Recognize attacks
When it comes to threats your company could experience, a top cybersecurity tip is to know the kinds of attacks you could face.

For instance, one of the most common cybersecurity attacks is phishing, which is when a hacker tries to trick others into providing sensitive information, passwords, or account details, typically via email. What makes this kind of attack so dangerous is that you don’t always know you’re being targeted. In fact, these incidents are so common and risky, that the FBI reported from October 2013 to May 2018, the exposed dollar loss from these scams exceeded $12.5 billion.

You should also know how to spot ransomware, which blocks access to your computer or its data until a ransom is paid. Although these sort of attacks make headlines due to the extreme amount of money that is demanded, it’s not the kind of headline you want your company to make.

As an employer, it’s also vital that you can spot a malware threat, which is malicious software that was designed to access a computer and its data without the knowledge of the user.

When you take the necessary steps to recognize attacks before they happen, you’ll be better prepared to understand the warning signs.

Train your employees
Your data is only as secure as the people who have access to it—your employees. Once you are aware of the types of attacks that your company may face, you can work towards training your employees on how to stop them before they start.

This goes all the way from the CEO to your summer intern, as anyone could be targeted. As an employer, you need to prioritize effective training programs across all employee levels. The sooner the better, as this should start when new team members are going through the onboarding process, as they need to be aware of their responsibilities and accountability when at work. Teach your employees about the benefits of cloud security and how it works to safely and securely store your data.

You can also consider running a test phishing email to see how many of your employees engage as a jumping point of where to start with your training efforts.

Use the right software
Another way to ramp up protection against an attack is to invest in the right software. For instance, threat intelligence software that would provide your company with additional information relates to the newest forms of cyber threats.

When your business invests in new technology that can monitor insider threats and verify user activity, your data has a better chance of staying secure.

On a similar note, employees should be made aware that they should never install unlicensed software on their work computers. And the software that is rightfully installed needs to remain up-to-date, as software updates can come with amended code and inner workings to prevent certain types of cyber attacks.

It’s better to be safe than sorry
When it comes to your company’s data, it can never be too secure. When you take the necessary steps to safeguard information, you’ll save yourself time, energy, and money in the long run. There’s a lot about cybersecurity that should be on your radar, but keeping these steps front and center is a great place to start.

Thinking about hiring for cybersecurity? Talk to a Hays consultant to learn how we can help.

Author Bio
Mara Calvello is a Senior Content Marketing Specialist at G2. In her spare time, she's typically at the gym finishing a run, reading a book from her overcrowded bookshelf, or right in the middle of a Netflix binge. Obsessions include the Chicago Cubs, Harry Potter, and all of the Italian food imaginable.

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