According to one recent study, about 64% of companies across the globe say that they have experienced at least one form of cyber attack. Every 39 seconds, a new attack takes place somewhere on the Internet – and believe it or not, that is one trend that is only increasing in frequency as time goes on.
But to make matters worse, about 43% of cyber attacks target small businesses in particular. You’d think that malicious actors would only want to target the largest organizations out there, but you’d be wrong. Oftentimes it’s far easier to steal from smaller companies because their defenses leave a lot to be desired. Statistics back this up, as the current global average cost of a single consolidated data breach is roughly $3.9 million across small and mid-sized businesses.
Thankfully, the solution to this situation is also a relatively straightforward one: an investment in cyber security training is one that you need to make, and sooner rather than later.
Why Cyber Security Training Matters
According to another recent study, the business cases for cyber security training and ongoing education are far too great to be ignored. A full 93% of cyber security professionals agree that human beings and technology “need to work together” to adequately detect and respond to threats like phishing attempts. This means that you could invest in what is objectively the most sophisticated cyber security solution in the world, and you’d still be missing that critical human element that is ultimately what will protect you from harm.
The same study indicated that security-related risks for small businesses are literally reduced by as much as 70% when those organizations invest in cyber security training and awareness efforts for their employees. Even a modest investment has a 72% chance of “significantly reducing the business impact of a cyber attack” should it occur.
But at the same time, one of the most important things to understand about all of this is that not all businesses are created equally. If you took a look at even your closest competitor, you’d likely be looking at a very different organization than your own – this despite that you’re offering similar products and services to similar groups of people.
That is to say, there truly is no “one size fits all” approach to cyber security training and ongoing protection. Yes, the chances that you’ll encounter something like a phishing attempt are high. But you need to consider your unique threats to mount the type of defense that will keep you protected.
That, too, is one of the many reasons why a cyber security course for organizational leadership is so important. Over the last decade in particular, both understanding and mitigating risk has become an essential skill for business leaders across the globe. Putting together a forward-thinking strategy requires you to understand how to mitigate the specific vulnerabilities that exist within your networks, your systems and your data. It requires you to understand where that valuable data is stored and what information is contained within it, all so that you can quickly understand the potential danger of a successful breach. It also requires you to develop the types of knowledge and skills necessary to protect the integrity and the confidentiality of all of your digital assets – assets that are changing all the time.
To get an idea of why it’s so important to be both A) proactive, and B) consistent with your approach to cyber security, consider the impact of the still-ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Prior to the onset of the pandemic, you may very well have had a totally adequate approach to cyber security. But overnight, your entire workforce suddenly found themselves working from home. Employees weren’t using devices you issued them that you can control – they’re using their own laptops, smartphones and tablets.
Suddenly, with the snap of a finger, your attack surface changed dramatically – and your approach to cyber security needs to be able to change right along with it.
That’s why a cyber security course like the one outlined above is an essential investment to make. Not only will it help you gain the knowledge needed to lead your organization through the complexities of the cyber security landscape, but it will also teach you the skills necessary to set appropriate budget guides and to tackle similar concerns as well.
In the end, if it feels like cyber security is something of a moving target, that’s largely because it is. But the stakes here are too high to leave anything to chance, which is why cyber security training will always be an investment worth making. If nothing else, it will finally give you the ability to stop worrying so much about the vulnerabilities of your technology so that you can enjoy the benefits those IT assets bring with them – which for many is the most important benefit of all.