Educating Your Staff With Cyber Security Practices

In recent months and years, cybersecurity has skyrocketed to the top of the headlines. Whether it’s the much-publicised ransomware attack on the NHS that took place in May of this year or the lurid details of many celebrities’ private lives revealed in the prolific iCloud hacks of recent times, protecting yourself and your organisation on the Internet has quickly become a more important agenda item than ever before.

For businesses, the need for effective cybersecurity has never been greater. Whether you’re hoping to protect the sensitive personal information your customers provide or simply want to ensure that payroll information and company emails are safe from prying eyes, cybersecurity is a key concern for many businesses.

In this article, we will take a look at the options available to organisations who want to ensure that their staff have the skills they need to stay secure online.

In-house cyber security

For some companies, the ideal option is to employ a team within your IT department. Its twin missions are to protect network infrastructures from attack and educate staff about how to use the Internet safely and securely. Forming an in house cyber security team makes sense for some companies. It’s suitable for companies with a big corporate payroll and a large enough budget,

An in-house cyber security must ensure that your employees know the score when it comes to protecting their information on the web. While your staff may be highly skilled in specific expertise relevant to your business, it does not always mean that they’ll be able to prevent their computers or other IT equipment from being compromised.

Cyber security experts who knows their stuff when it comes to protection on the Internet can pay dividends. Some of the main staff education areas they can cover include specifics such as avoiding opening suspicious email attachments and immediately reporting the loss of any missing devices such as USB sticks and external hard drives.

Taking your employees through the consequences of what might happen if they fail to play their part in ensuring cybersecurity on the company’s network raises awareness of the consequences of such behaviour.

By grounding the scenarios used in potential common occurrences – such as using an unsecured Wi-Fi network to access company files or being careless on transport and leaving a laptop on the bus – those responsible for training your staff will be able to reach your employees on their level and implement more effective behaviour change.

Bring in a contractor

While all the benefits of in-house cyber security may seem relevant and appealing when it comes to your company, you may be worried about the cost of implementing an in house cyber security team.

After all, hiring new staff brings with it a whole range of challenges. Not only do you have to think about salaries, you also need to think about the tax and national insurance burdens that employing a new person will cause. These expenses can be prohibitive when it comes to the all-important balance sheet.

And so bringing in a contractor is often a good idea. It means that you can provide the expertise you need for your staff, while also ensuring you don’t expose yourself to unnecessary budgetary excesses.

If you’re concerned about the tax status of a contractor you hire to implement cyber security processes, don’t worry. Umbrella companies can provide contractor tax help to the IT specialist you get on board, and ensure that you don’t have to worry about the risks of tax avoidance.

There’s a whole host of places out there where you can find cyber security contractors who can help your staff avoid risky practices such as giving out login details over the phone, clicking on links in emails with an unclear source, and more.

These include sites like LinkedIn, where plenty of independent cyber security experts with experience delivering workshops and seminars often advertise their services. You can  also use them to locate specialist recruitment agencies in your area who can find the right expertise for your organisation.

Ultimately, the decision about how to educate staff on the complex but important issue of cyber security comes down to the the nature and needs of your organisation. But for many small to medium sized organisations, the decision is clear. Bringing in an external contractor makes sense for a lot of cost-watching companies, especially when an umbrella company is available to handle all the tax issues for you.

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