Culture is a huge part of any business, encompassing the way your company works and operates.
Making security a key part of your organisation's culture can help your team become more aware of the risks posed by cyberthreats. And the more eyes you have on potential phishing scams or other attacks, the better.
A security-first culture involves getting everyone on the same page when it comes to data security posture management.
Just as your company’s culture involves the values you align on, and the mission you aspire to, bringing security to the forefront of your organisation can highlight the focus you want your employees to have.
Creating a culture where security is embedded within the company, and everyone cares about it, takes time and commitment, but could prove beneficial when it comes to warding off cyberattacks.
Building your human firewall within your company can make employees more aware of phishing scams, and other cyberattacks. It means you have more eyes on potential risks to the business, and strengthens your weakest link when it comes to security - your people.
In 2022, Verizon’s Data Breach Investigation Report found 82% of data breaches involved a human element, showing just how critical it can be to get your employees on board when it comes to caring about security.
There are a few ways you can create a security-first culture:
If you’re struggling to get people to care enough about security (which has traditionally been seen as quite a boring topic), it can let down the whole team. Making sure it’s highlighted in your hiring and onboarding processes to instill this throughout your entire organisation should be a one of the first steps in your DLP strategy.
Use interactive training sessions to engage your employees and run workshops where they can put what they’ve learned into practice. Once your team understands the importance of security and what the impact can be if they don’t take it seriously, it’ll be easier to create your human firewall.
You’ll need to get across that security isn’t something to take lightly. Showing the risk that is involved can make your point stick. You could use real-life examples to show the financial and reputational losses of companies who have gone through it to emphasise the damage cyberattacks can cause, pointing out the exact mistakes made.
If you can find a company in your sector to base your case study on, you can show the very real dangers posed by cyberthreats like phishing scams, and make it relatable to your own business.
It’s easy to assume that everyone keeps up with the news but that’s not always the case. Make sure your employees are aware of any new threats that may be a risk to the business, and let them know what to do if they encounter any.
Who should their first point of contact should be, and what information will they need to pass on if they come into contact with a new cyberthreat?
Rather than an annual training session, incorporating security training into everyday life can ensure you make your policies stick. Support people in varied ways rather than just through online training too - remember everyone prefers different styles of learning so what may work for one may not work for another.
Sheree Buller Lim, Head of Product at Metomic, says, ‘Using tactics like real-time employee notifications to remind employees of security policies (and let them know when they’re violating them) could be much more beneficial than a yearly training exercise that could be forgotten about in days. Products like Metomic come with built-in functionalities that help security teams stay on top of violations and take action quickly.’
Everyone loves a reward. Whether it’s cash, gift cards, or something unique to your business, rewards can help you grab people’s attention when it comes to security. Give your employees the right recognition and they’ll be motivated to get involved.
Talk about security when you talk about your overall aims and vision for the company. If your team can see how important it is to the business, they’ll be able to build it into their own individual targets too.
For instance, if keeping customers’ data safe is a huge commitment of yours, your customer success team is less likely to share sensitive information in their Slack conversations.
Security doesn’t have much of a fun reputation. But incorporating security into things like company quizzes or quarterly hackathons can change that. The competitive element of these can bring out the best in your team, helping them to think outside the box when it comes to security.
Changing the narrative around security - that it can be an interesting topic, rather than a dull one - can change your team’s entire outlook on security training.
Data security tools like Metomic can strengthen your security first culture, giving you visibility over your sensitive data and helping you control it.
With employee notifications activated in Slack, you can let your team know where they’re going wrong and make them aware of your security policies.
When you make data security the responsibility of everyone, it becomes a whole lot easier to manage.
Building your security-first culture can bring you plenty of benefits and make security everyone’s concern. To read about this in action, take a look at our case study with Hati from Zappi.