This is the fifth article in our series on information security awareness training for small businesses. The previous article provided specific details on how to implement a security awareness training program. Now that you have a program in place, it’s important to understand when to make changes.
In today’s digitally driven world, cybersecurity is no longer a concern solely for large corporations. Small businesses are increasingly becoming targets of cyberattacks, making security awareness training crucial. But it’s not enough to implement a one-time training program and call it a day. The question arises: How often should you evaluate your security awareness training program to ensure it remains effective in protecting your small business?
The Importance of Annual Reviews
When deciding on the frequency to reevaluate your security training program, it can be difficult to land on the best time frame. If you reevaluate it too frequently, then you are probably wasting pressure time. Waiting too long, on the other hand, can lead to an inefficient program that has no benefit. Our recommendation is an annual evaluation of your security awareness training program.
We believe there are two major factors that support annual re-evaluations. Firstly, the threat landscape is constantly evolving, with new tactics and vulnerabilities emerging regularly. An annual review allows you to keep your training materials up-to-date with the latest cybersecurity threats and best practices. This ensures your staff is being trained on relevant information that can impact their lives and your business.
Another reason is that it helps reinforce the importance of cybersecurity within your organization. If the leadership within the organization are continuously improving the program, it emphasizes the importance throughout the company. It reminds them to remain vigilant and promotes a culture of cybersecurity awareness. At the end of the day, the goal is to create a cybersecurity conscious atmosphere, and that starts with the leadership.
Adapting to Infrastructure Changes
Aside from annual evaluations, it’s crucial to assess your security awareness training program whenever there are major infrastructure changes in your network. Within an industry that changes as rapidly as cybersecurity, adding and maintaining effective infrastructure is essential. But whenever you introduce something new, it changes the digital landscape for the entire organization. This includes changes such as adopting new software, implementing cloud solutions, or expanding your IT infrastructure.
It truly should be one of the first steps after implementing or changing something that impacts your information security system. These alterations can introduce new security risks and challenges that your training program should address. Taking time to assess the new potential vulnerabilities brought on from these enhancements will provide opportunities to train your staff to defend against them.
What to Consider When Re-Evaluating Security Awareness Training Programs
Understanding when to re-evaluate is vital, but knowing what aspects of your program needs to be reassessed is just as important. When re-evaluating your security awareness training program, consider these key aspects.
Content Relevance: Review your training materials to ensure they remain relevant to your business and industry. Update content to reflect the latest threats and technologies.
Delivery Methods: Assess whether the training methods you use are engaging and effective. Explore options like interactive modules or simulations to enhance engagement.
Feedback Mechanisms: Solicit feedback from employees who have undergone training. Use their insights to fine-tune the program and make it more tailored to their needs.
Metrics and Assessment: Establish metrics to measure the program’s effectiveness. Evaluate how well employees understand cybersecurity concepts and their ability to apply them in real-world situations.
Make Security Awareness a Priority
In conclusion, regular evaluations of your security awareness training program are essential for maintaining a strong cybersecurity posture within your small business. Conduct yearly assessments to keep up with evolving threats, reinforce the importance of cybersecurity, and measure effectiveness. Additionally, don’t forget to evaluate your program whenever significant changes occur in your network infrastructure. By staying proactive in your approach to security awareness training, you can better protect your business from the ever-present cyber threats.
If you’d like to learn more about developing a customized security awareness training program for your small business, don’t hesitate to contact us. We’re here to help you build a robust cybersecurity strategy that fits your specific needs.