Phishing remains the most prevalent form of cybercrime today.Because the human element plays a role in the success of a phishing attack, relying on technological defenses to protect your organization from a breach is not enough. Employees need to be educated and trained to identify and report suspicious emails.
Phishing remains the most prevalent form of cybercrime today. Each day, a whopping3 billion phishing emails are sent. In the 3rd quarter of 2022, theAPWG Phishing Activity Trends Report observed 1,270,883 total phishing attacks, which APWG described as “a new record and the worst quarter for phishing” that they have ever observed. Last year, over48% of emails that were sent out were spam. And we know that spam is more than just irritating advertising practice, it can be dangerous because spam may be part of a phishing scam.
According toVerizon’s 2022 Data Breach Investigations report, 82% of breaches involved the human element, including social attacks, errors, and misuse. Over80% of all organizations globally have reported that phishing attacks targeted their employees. The reason is simple. Hackers look for weaknesses in your company. And often, your vulnerabilities are employees that are distracted or not trained to identify and report potential phishing attacks. We’re not only talking about lower-level employees or hires. Executives are also a targeted group.
Because the human element plays a role in the success of a phishing attack, relying on technological defenses to protect your organization from a breach is not enough. Employees need to be educated and trained to identify and report suspicious emails.
Why Phishing Training Should Be Part of Your Overall Cybersecurity Strategy
Reports show that84% of US-based organizations that conducted regular security awareness training have reduced the rate at which their employees fell prey to phishing attacks. Here are the reasons why phishing training should be a part of your overall cybersecurity:
Promotes a culture of security
Employees need to understand what is at stake and the repercussions of a single cyber-related misstep. Cultivating a culture of security helps change employee attitudes around security practices, increasing their sense of accountability.
Regular phishing training or security awareness training sends employees the message that security is not only the responsibility of cybersecurity professionals; it is everybody’s responsibility because anyone can be a target. It may even help to implement training programs that mix employees across different levels and departments together to demonstrate that anybody, regardless of position and role, can be a phishing victim.
Empowers employees with skills and knowledge
Employees can become complacent and assume that every email that lands in their inbox is legitimate because they know technological defenses, like firewalls and anti-spam applications, are up. Through effective security awareness training, employees learn that they play a critical role in ensuring potential phishing attacks do not complete their mission. Training will help them learn how to identify potential phishing attacks and how to react to them. A part of an effective training program is to also educate employees on rising or trending phishing scams.
The numbers are in. And what they tell us is that phishing scams are not only increasing but they’re also evolving. Therefore, implementing a security awareness training program becomes critical for any business, regardless of size and industry. The goal of an effective and successful phishing training program is not to increase paranoia in employees but to empower their actions and defenses when they are faced with a potential phishing attack.