There’s an old cliché that a chain is only as strong as its weakest link. This is particularly true in cybersecurity.

You can have all of the best security software and upgrades available, but none of that will ultimately matter if you make a personal mistake that allows hackers access to your secured network.

In fact, according to a recent report, 90% of all successful hacks come as a result of human error. Although software is programmed to look for specific elements and may sometimes miss, letting something slip through, people are the next level left in defense that keeps those items from going any further.

How do you create a human firewall for your security? Here are things you need to know.

What cyber hacks are people falling for?

The biggest attack that people are being caught with is still the phishing attack. Over 90 percent of all successful data breaches are the result of a phishing scam, according to a report from the Online Trust Alliance.

People see an email from someone within a company and automatically think it’s safe to open and click on links that are included. Likewise, too many people are still trusting strange emails from outsiders that are taking them to malicious websites.

Once there, the computer is infected with malware or ransomware and the programs are then spread throughout the network, infecting other users. Beyond that, simple password security is an issue such as using inadequate or easily guessable passwords or making physical security issues like leaving passwords lying around on a Post-It note.

What steps toward creating a human firewall do you need to take?

  1. Start with the top down—Executives should lead by example. However, according to SecureWorks, 66% of IT professionals do not think their executive administrators view cybersecurity protocols as a priority. This is something that needs to change.

Administrators should all “walk the walk” by following the protocols put in place by the IT department. If an administrator does not follow these protocols, how can they hold an employee responsible if the employee doesn’t follow it either?

  1. Training should be regular—Training is not a one-time event. Instead, there needs to be regular training updates focusing on a different point each time. Unfortunately, 62% of businesses have not increased their trainings despite the increase in hacks and data breaches. As new issues arrive, schedule trainings to educate all employees with what is happening in security.
  2. Test your training regularly—Since phishing attacks are such a huge problem industry-wide, regularly check your employee’s response to phishing attacks. There are apps and services that let you send fake phishing emails to your employees to see how they respond. If an employee fails the test and clicks on the phishing message, you can then retrain them and reassess.
  3. Give them an incentive—Give praise for those that do well with test phishing emails and all IT directed guidelines. While you should test and retrain those who click on phishing scams, you should also praise those employees who follow proper procedures and ignore the messages or forward them to the IT department to be dealt with.

Some businesses have found ways to reward employees with special prizes or even bonuses for going without a security incident. Just as many construction sites have bonuses for safe working practices without accidents, it should be an incentive for those in computer-based businesses to do the same for safe computing. This will go a long way in promoting a human firewall.

Employees can create a human firewall that can effectively protect their business’ network and computer assets. Software and hacking upgrades can only do so much. It is when all aspects work together in harmony that the cyber attacks can be stopped.

INSUREtrust is committed to keeping you digitally safe. We’re making cyber simple.  Contact us to speak with one of our cyber experts for a free consultation.