Cybersecurity: Human firewall or Weakest Link?

How investing in employee awareness strenghtens your cybersecurity

WhCompanies spend massive amounts on cybersecurity. From $3.5 billion in 2004 to $75 billion in 2015, forecasted to $170 billion (!) by 2020. But are all of these investments just a waste? Research shows that current cyber threats can’t just be tackled by IT security. Nowadays, cyber criminals target your workforce rather than your anti-virus. With success. Time to build a human firewall.

Today’s business leaders need to realize that classic, anti-virus software can’t protect their businesses from emerging threats. Like spear phishing, nor is that good ol’ firewall a clear line between clean and dirty networks anymore. Wired took it a step further, stating that a vast majority of security experts no longer even uses anti-virus software. Main reason: cyber criminals will find cunning, new ways to bypass it anyway.

The human firewall

If you truly want to stop cyber criminals from waltzing through your company’s firewall and wreak havoc, you need to stop spending on the next big thing in IT security. You rather start investing in a security-conscious workplace – aka a “human firewall”. Avoid successful cyberattacks by teaching your employees to think like security professionals. Let them become cautious enough to think twice before acting.

cybersecurity human firewall

Quote of P. Saariluoma. Think of these words when building a human firewall.

Brick by brick

To build a powerful human firewall, you need to increase the awareness of employees. It has to raise to such an extent that they become a solid line of defense against cyber threats. Building a human firewall, however, is more than just providing a one-time security training. For it to truly be effective, security training must be a continuous process, not just a check-box chore.

Just like an actual wall, your human firewall should be constructed brick by brick. Educating your workforce on (new) cyber threats by publicly sharing small chunks of useful information on a regular basis. This ensures that employees will be more aware of cyber threats and stop being the weakest link in your organization.

cybersecurity human firewall

Infographic: Percentage of cyberattacks caused by human error.

Remember, amateurs hack systems; professionals hack people. Start investing in your human firewall today! Contact one of our experts now.

About the author

Frits Vos

Frits Vos has been with Netpresenter for over a decade. As head of Innovation & IT, Frits is an indispensable piece of the Netpresenter puzzle.