Companies, regardless of their size, are all exposed to cybercrime. All the company’s stakeholders (colleagues, employees, company manager) must be aware of this and actively participate in the protection of sensitive data within the organization.

Define a data protection policy that can be understood by all

To improve your company’s security and encourage your employees to adopt good cybersecurity practices, it is necessary to draft a data protection policy. Its content may vary according to the company’s sector, but it must be clearly written and understood by all. Feel free to include examples of risk behaviors and possible solutions to avoid them. This will ensure that employees are aware of what data is considered sensitive within the company and how to protect it effectively.

Provide long-term training

Even if they are not malicious, employees themselves can be vectors of cyber attacks. The main reasons are lack of knowledge and vigilance. Employee training proves to be an effective weapon for detecting threats, (e.g., to recognize phishing attempts) and adopting safer behavior. Do not hesitate to involve a professional who can clearly explain the risks associated with opening an infected email or choosing a password that is too easy to guess. Of course, this awareness must be done over the long term. Newly recruited employees must be made aware of the company’s safety rules, but it is also important to regularly remind employees with more seniority to remain vigilant. To test their employees’ reaction to hacking, some companies send “test” emails to employees, including links that they should not normally click on. In this way, the company can act effectively by offering personalized training to employees who have been trapped.

Communication internal information in an optimal way

Engaging employees in the importance of cybersecurity requires education and patience. It is a long-term communication process that you must undertake. For example, you can remind employees of the safety rules in newsletters sent to all employees, put posters and stickers near sensitive tools or provide employees with materials that they can consult freely if necessary.

IT security breaches in companies are often the result of human negligence. It is therefore essential to “educate” your employees to cybersecurity, with appropriate training and communication for educational purposes.

Learn more: The Canadian government provides companies with a list of tips for educating employees about cyber safety.