If you are going to spend the time it takes to build a website, create its e-commerce infrastructure and pick the right SEO package, building the proper security around it should be a no-brainer. What good is any innovation if you cannot protect it? Cyber attacks are happening more frequently, and the repercussions are getting worse.
IBM reports that the average cost of a breach is $3.86 million in the US. The goodwill lost totals much more. How can you stop this when you must rely on your labor force to perform more daily digital actions as we become more electronically inclined? Basically, you must make your administrators and marketers care just as much about security as they do about payroll and web design. Here’s what you can do.
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While your marketers are deciding what SEO plugin to use, they must understand how important security is. (The marketing department is especially important to consider – they are the ones with the most contact to the outside.) Anyone can open up the company to a breach through a phishing email. The most important thing to build in your employees is a skeptical attitude – everyone must consider the security implications of the actions they take on a daily basis.
When conducting human firewall training, it is important to focus on the methods that work. Traditional “one and done” training philosophies are not good enough to counter the constantly accelerating pressure of hackers pushing against your security barriers with automated attacks. Treat your training like an investment and focus that investment like Warren Buffett using new techniques like active practice, spaced retrieval, interleaving and memory cues.
Assess and Refine
Building a human firewall is not something that you can set and leave. Your digital opponents are always modifying their strategies based on the resistance they receive from you. If your strategy stays the same, eventually the hackers will get xpast you. A cybersecurity awareness program that modifies itself based on research and best practices is always the best choice. Because you are building a human firewall, you must also acknowledge the individual skill sets and initiatives from the people in your organization who are naturally talented at security. Creating informal security teams that flow between departments is a good way to give your IT staff some much needed backup.
The human firewall that you build is the X-factor that will keep your business from suffering the fate of so many others (including tech savvy companies like Facebook, Intuit and Twitter, et al.). You can implement the latest and greatest security software or as-a-Service cloud package available, but you will only shore up the holes in your infrastructure with a properly trained human element.
NIST 2003 guidelines say it best – every cybersecurity program you implement should function under a philosophy of continuous improvement. Make sure their training is updated over time to reflect past reviews and the new risks, threats and technologies that will consistently find their way into the market.