Cybersecurity is an ever-evolving playing field and if you’re not aware of the latest types of hacks, your businesses’ data is at stake. Cybersecurity awareness in the workplace is crucial if you want to lower your companies’ chances of experiencing a data breach.

Yet even with the publicized data breaches that happened to notable companies including Target, Sony and Home Depot, many businesses have not made employee cybersecurity training & education a priority.

According to a Nasdaq survey, 90% of corporate executives cannot read a cybersecurity report and are not prepared to handle a major attack.

If CEOs and executives don’t view cybersecurity as a threat to their company, neither will their employees, which heightens the chances of a data breach caused by human error. The 2015 Cost of Data Breach Study conducted by Ponemon says human error causes 25% of all data breaches within the U.S. and costs around $198 per capita to repair.

Human error stems from negligence and the lack of knowledge or care. In order to secure your businesses’ data, you have to create a cyber-aware culture in the workplace. Every employee plays a part in protecting a company from experiencing a security breach and every employee needs to be properly educated and equipped with the knowledge of how to recognize and combat a cybersecurity threat.

If you want to educate your employees and coworkers about cybersecurity and create a cyber-aware environment, discover the top 5 cybersecurity mistakes that employees make.


  1. Failure to Recognize a Hack

If you don’t know what a phishing email looks like, odds are you are more than likely to click the link or download the attachment. Many people can’t recognize the red flags of an email, website or app that has hidden malware, and unless employees become exposed to these types of hack tactics they won’t know what to avoid.


  1. Using Weak Passwords

Be creative when choosing your password. Yes, choosing a difficult password is hard to remember, but write it down, memorize it, do anything you can and avoid using easy passwords. SplashData, a password and record management company gathered a list of the top 25 worst passwords of 2015 based off of two million leaked passwords.  If you want to learn more about password security read our blog post!


  1. Not Encrypting Data Before Uploading to the Cloud

Storing data in the Cloud equates to storing your data on someone else’s external hardware.  Once it’s there, it’s under someone else’s control.

Encrypt all classified data before uploading it to the cloud.  If you will be sharing keys with the Cloud provider, make sure you understand the Cloud provider’s policies. (i.e. What is their backup policy? Who has access to your data? What’s their data breach communication policy?)


  1. Reusing Passwords

Password Boss, a password management company says that 59% of people reuse their password for multiple accounts. A survey by Telesign, polled 2000 people in the U.S. and UK, and found that 40% of the people who reused their password had encountered a security incident within the past year. Although it’s tedious to remember different passwords, protect your company’s data by creating unique passwords for each account.


  1. Realize the Value of Data

You’re more likely to establish greater security measures for an item or document that you know is of great value. Emphasize to your employees that all work data is important and needed for your company. Once they understand the value of a document, file or spreadsheet, they will naturally be more aware and protective.