Cybersecurity experts have long touted properly trained employees as an organization’s first line of defense amid the rapid proliferation of cybercrime. Cybercriminals, meanwhile, reveal through their tactics that they still consider untrained employees an organization’s Achilles heel.
Almost every successful cyberattack reported in the media exploits the human factor. Fortunately, IT decision makers are increasingly aware of this. The most conscientious security chiefs are placing greater emphasis on staff training to secure their organization’s perimeter.
However, is it truly possible to train every single employee—including those working from home and organizations’ third-party partners—to spot a cyber threat? Or to keep good cybersecurity hygiene when handling sensitive data? Or to refrain from stealing intellectual property when they’re disgruntled and about to resign? While training is a key element to preventing breaches and protecting important corporate data, training alone is not enough.
Perimeter Defenses Can Only Do so Much
Businesses handling sensitive data – whether their own intellectual property or customers’ personal information – need to be able to prevent breaches resulting from mistakes and malice, both from the inside and the outside.
In a recent study of IT decision makers, 38 percent named cybersecurity training and support as the pillar of their company’s cybersecurity posture. Organizations that emphasize training are also quicker at detecting attacks, and more efficient at isolating them. Conversely, 43 percent of infosec professionals say they are kept awake at night worrying about their organizations’ cybersecurity, with their biggest fears stemming from insider threats.
When faced with advanced threats like attacks leveraging fileless malware, sophisticated social engineering schemes like spear phishing and CEO impersonation (whaling), or disgruntled insiders with high-level access to company assets, cybersecurity leaders need to pair training with technology for the solution.
Keep Tabs on Your Network Traffic
Cybersecurity executives no longer look at just traditional endpoint and perimeter security solutions to safeguard their assets. They are placing stronger emphasis on next-generation security tools (35 percent) and Network Traffic Analytics (NTA) (34 percent) to keep their organizations secure. NTA technology, in fact, plays a crucial role in safeguarding today’s corporate assets from internal and external threats. A key strength of NTA is behavioral analytics, which enables security teams to spot with dense granularity even the faintest anomaly relative to the known behavior of a company’s applications and processes.
NTA applies machine learning to recognize anomalous behavior, then generates automated responses to attacks in progress. The technology integrates with existing EPP and EDR tools to facilitate swift remediation on devices that exhibit abnormal behavior.
Like a Horse and Carriage
It’s important to strike a balance between strengthening the human factor through training and building a strong cybersecurity technology stack. While training goes a long way toward defending a corporate network, IT chiefs must remember that cybercrooks will always find a way to exploit the human layer of the infrastructure.
Train your troops against outside threats, but don’t forget to equip your IT department with the tools needed to gain visibility into less evident threats that may have slipped through the cracks.