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When it comes to your business’ online safety and security, it’s an all-hands-on-deck responsibility. A quick, single action can put your business at risk. According to a recent Ponemon Institute study, 64 percent of attacks could be traced back to the negligent behavior of a staff member or contingent member. These individuals didn’t have malicious intent; rather they were often too busy or uninformed on how to respond to the scams properly.

Your employees are your number one asset against cyber threats. This means that you should take proper steps to make sure your employees are on the same page when it comes to protecting information. Understanding the importance of online safety and using the best practices, your employees can and will be the best line of cyber defense you could ever have.

Here are a few tips to help in the process.

All businesses need to take measures to prevent attacks and have a set plan if one does occur. Therefore, develop and educate your employees on your company’s cybersecurity plan:

  • Identify – recognize your most valuable assets that are important to your businesses and criminals.
  • Protect – implement and stay up to date on protective measures you place to defend your organization against a cyber incident.
  • Detect – set up systems to alert you if an incident occurs and allow employees to report problems.
  • Respond – make and practice a plan to contain an attack and maintain business operations in the short term.
  • Recover – know how to return to normal business operations after a breach, including any obligations.

Employees need knowledge, understanding and encouragement to properly protect your business. Implement policies and practices for all of your employees:

  • Training and education – employees need to be aware and know about cyber threats, especially how to spot and report them. Utilizing anti-phishing training and testing helps employees learn how to minimize email and malware risks.
  • Accountability – all employees must take ownership of security within their domain that they control. It must be mandatory for them to practice good cyber-hygiene. Create a business code of conduct that includes cybersecurity that is reviewed annually. This instills that accountability is each employee’s responsibility to your business and customers.

It is important to emphasize that these steps and policies aren’t made to restrict employees from being creative in their own work and meeting goals; instead, it’s learning where pitfalls lie and where lines need to be drawn. Learning how to teach, engage and inspire your team to be cybersecurity ambassadors will keep your organization safe.

Your security is our priority. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact your preferred Heartland Bank location.

Cindy Moyle

Cindy is a Senior Vice President /Information Technology and Operations Director for Heartland Bank. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Outside of the bank, Cindy enjoys spending time with her family and going to garage sales and flea markets.

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