Why You Need to Train Your Employees - What Is the Worst That Could Happen?
With email and other forms of telecommunication becoming more prominent than ever in the workplace, these forms of communication can leave holes in a company’s cyber security platform. Email addresses and public profiles can be hotspots of information that an attentive attacker can look to for gathering information and developing strategies to target the end user with attacks utilizing phishing, vishing, and other forms of social engineering. This leaves the everyday employee at the highest risk for these types of attacks. As a defense, proactive and continuous measures can help end users identify any emails that could be suspicious or malicious and help cybersecurity professionals identify these types of attacks and work to mitigate the damages caused.
Malicious attackers will target the end user with such tactics such as Social Engineering, trying to act as someone they are not and looking to trick these users to either transfer funds to them or divulge confidential information such as usernames and passwords in order to gain access to the victims’ credentials. With this they can look to further exploit a business or system, gathering business documents, companies’ data including names and private contact information. This can include customer data such as credit card or payment information, personal identification information and private contact information.
These types of attacks, if successful, can also lead to ransomware encrypting information on the businesses network and “holding it for ransom”. These can be extremely dangerous and costly if they propagate over a network. The methods of encrypting the data are often times extremely hard to decrypt or figure out without paying for the key. Dealing with ransomware groups and providing payment will never guarantee that the ransomware group will provide the data or give the key even after the payment is made.
Now you may be asking what can be done to defend against these types of social engineering, phishing and more complex attacks? The simplest and easiest answer is to educate your employees. Continuous and ever-evolving training can teach end users to look out for key giveaways to these types of attacks. It is important to have end users that can identify scam or phishing communications as they are sent. Having users understand how to react when receiving one of these emails can save a company in the long run. An educated end user base can act as a strong preventative defense against social engineering-type attacks and give the team who handles such attacks a heads up that these types of attacks are being launched. This simple idea of continuous and consistent security awareness training can be far cheaper than reacting after an end user was phished.