Why It’s Crucial to Hire Cyber-Aware Staff and Communicate Your Strategy

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Cybercriminals have been keeping in step with the ongoing rise in digital technologies across the globe. Unfortunately, as technologies advance, so too does the sophistication of cyberattacks and their potential to breach data protection, disrupt systems, and wreak havoc. 

With a cybersecurity expert on your staff, avoiding, managing, and resolving any issues are enhanced. So, a drive to identify and recruit talented cyber-smart employees might be a sensible move rather than reaching that point when the damage has already been done – and risk losing clients, customers, and business profits. 

Introduce a Cybersecurity Strategy

Having an effective cybersecurity system in place is vital in any industry. After all, most companies operate useful websites with a stream of supporting systems. With the workplace evolving so fast and new patterns of flexible, freelance, and remote working  growing at unprecedented rates, businesses need to protect their data more than ever before. 

However, surveys show that more than 60% of businesses lack a cybersecurity strategy despite hacks often happening daily and costing companies thousands. According to statistics, cyberattacks cost businesses approximately $200,000  each year. 

Therefore, implementing an effective strategy, and hiring the staff to manage it, is vital to ensure protection from data theft, damage, and disruption. First, identify and implement a cybersecurity strategy utilizing an ethical form of penetration testing. And, remember that setting up a strategy is relatively straightforward and cost-effective. 

From in-house teams to contracted staff, there is a need to implement and share your cybersecurity best practices across the board. To organize and recruit an effective cyber-secure team, consider these points. 

Educate Your Employees

Staff members need to understand just how serious the threat of a cyber attack can be. However, to teach them effectively, it needs to come from the top, so it’s essential to take the time to educate them. 

Whether through an internal blog, newsletter, or hiring someone to run a training seminar, the more aware of cybersecurity threats that staff can be, the better equipped they will be to recognize and neutralize its threat. From phishing scams to ransomware attacks and network infiltration to password cracking, knowing how to identify and prevent threats could save your business a substantial sum of money and its entire reputation at the same time. 

Too many businesses make the mistake of providing cybersecurity training that isn’t substantial enough for the importance of the task. A single training session when a member of staff starts won’t be enough when it comes to defending against modern cybercriminals.

Vectors of attack are constantly in flux, so training needs to be updated to ensure that your team understands how they might be targeted. 

Hire Cybersecurity Experts

While on the topic of educating employees, it could even be worth hiring a cybersecurity expert to work in your office or workspace. That way, you will not only be helping address the widely documented cybersecurity skills gap, but you will also be prioritizing the safety of your business – something that is arguably a lot more important than having a flawless PR strategy developed from the get-go. 

There is a challenge here that comes in the cybersecurity skills shortage in the employment market. It has been well reported that there aren’t enough cybersecurity specialists available for the jobs needed. Despite efforts to address the problem in recent years, there has been a workforce gap of 2.72 million cybersecurity staff.

It is essential to recognize that you need specific cybersecurity staff with relevant skills to your business. If you don’t have that kind of cybersecurity expertise already within the company, it could be worth working with cybersecurity consultants.   

Hire Cyber-Aware Staff

It is essential to distinguish between those team members you bring in specifically for their cyber expertise and those ensuring that the rest of your team is cyber-aware. Ultimately, your members of staff constitute a crucial line of defense. Even with the most advanced cybersecurity technology, organizations can’t do anything if their employees can’t spot phishing emails. 

It is a great idea to make your HR staff aware that it is essential to recognize the value of cyber security-aware candidates when you come to make new hires. According to recent research, 66% of data breaches reported by companies are caused by “insider threats” – issues coming within the organization. This can involve both intentional and unintentional actions that result in cybercrime. 

While some businesses may feel as if their money is better spent elsewhere, prioritizing staff hiring or implementing an effective cybersecurity strategy is key to long-term protection. As we have seen, there are various ways to ensure that your team is protected. 

Perhaps most important for companies to realize that cybersecurity is not simply a job that you can leave to your IT team. Hiring cybersecurity specialists is undoubtedly essential, but it is only one step, alongside hiring cyber-aware team members and ensuring staff are provided with training to recognize the most common forms of cybercrime. 


Dakota Murphey is a freelance author.


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By Dakota Murphey