5 Ways to Instill Your Security Culture In Your Team Members

All it takes is a misplaced key in the wrong hands or a malware link opened from an email for a company to be breached. Stroll into your security department and you will hear the latest news on data lost or an important file that someone misplaced in accounting. As cyber and physical security converge, intentional security at all different access points in a company are necessary.

All it takes is a misplaced key in the wrong hands or a malware link opened from an email for a company to be breached. Stroll into your security department and you will hear the latest news on data lost or an important file that someone misplaced in accounting. As cyber and physical security converge, intentional security at all different access points in a company are necessary. Although security in a company is widespread and mainstream, there is not a security culture that has kept pace with the current threat landscape. In order to mitigate modern security threats, administration and management need to emphasize and implement a healthy “security culture” for their team.

A healthy “security culture” is a consistent, conscientious behavior people practice: Do they open an email or inspect a link’s validity before clicking? Do they return devices to designated storage units? These are questions crossing the minds of management and administration in charge of keeping company operations smooth and safe.   

An organization’s company culture can only thrive in an environment that is safe and secure. But how can you develop a security culture that grows organically in your company? Check out five recommendations for how to develop a strong security culture from the ground up:

1. Security for all

Security is for everyone at every level of your team-not just the IT department or the CEO at the top. All of your team members should be aware of security protocols and trends in the company. It should also be emphasized that they are an important piece inside of the security network. Security is in the hands of drivers handling company keys and vehicles or data analysts who manage passwords and other secure information. Start building your security culture with the mantra: “Security for all.”

2. Educate from the top down

Your company security is only as strong as its weakest link. In order to develop a relevant security system, you have to stay abreast of modern security threats – both physical and cyber. Furthermore, educational security development needs to be part of your company’s policy. It starts with a management team that advocates for training programs for everyone on the team – including staff, contractors, consultants, third parties and even customers.

3. Reward and recognize doing the right thing

Create a system that rewards and encourages security best practices. When someone completes a mandatory security awareness program, give them something substantial, tangible and positive. A high five, cash reward or gift card can be a significant motivator for your people to know that you value security as part of the culture.

Another way to ‘reward’ employee security awareness is to provide security advancement. Create opportunities for your team members to grow into dedicated security roles within the company. If you say that security is important, provide growth potential into such roles for those who are passionate about it. Ways to do this include educational courses, certifications, advanced degrees and a career choice in your organization.

If the cost of these initiatives off puts you, keep this in mind: the cost of paying out a “security bonus” or sponsoring an educational course for your employees far outweighs the cost of a single security breach.

4. Build security mindfulness

A security culture is a state of mind where people feel that security is part of the day-to-day business. As your business evolves so does the landscape of security; keep this in mind as you make security a part of your team’s daily work experience. Those who want to threaten a secure workplace are not sitting on their hands. They are always developing new techniques to breach current security systems. Therefore, trainings should be on-going so that the act of security is normalized.

4. Build security mindfulness

Another PowerPoint presentation or a poster on security initiatives is not going to be at the top of your team’s list of company culture moments. Keep your awareness efforts focused and fresh by adding creativity, humor and a positive attitude. These will go a long way to reinforce the importance of security policies and also the role your team plays in keeping the company’s assets secure. At the end of the day, security is about people, safety and wellness; let that be the guiding message at security trainings.

A secure company means a thriving company

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