To mitigate the risk of a successful, cyberattack, dealerships must address the most common sources of an attack—unpatched security vulnerabilities, human error, and malware. In this blog, we’re going to focus on the human error component.
According to the Verizon 2023 Data Breach Investigation Report, nearly three-quarters of data breaches involve the actions of individuals within an organization. This illustrates the significance of the human error component of a cyber defense. To address this, dealerships must implement an effective cybersecurity awareness training program for their employees.
The repercussions of a successful cyberattack are severe, with the average cost of a data breach in 2023 reaching a staggering $4.45 million. Equally damaging is the potential impact on a dealership’s reputation, with 80% of consumers defecting from a company if their information is compromised in a breach.
Cybersecurity awareness training is a critical approach to mitigate the risks associated with the human element in data breaches. It plays a pivotal role in transforming employees into a formidable human firewall—an essential component of any comprehensive information security program.
Key elements of effective cybersecurity awareness training include educating employees on proper cyber hygiene, understanding security risks, and identifying potential cyberattacks via email and the web. Typical topics covered encompass phishing awareness, password security, privacy issues, compliance, insider threats, CEO/wire fraud, data in motion, and office cyber hygiene.
Additionally, dealerships are now mandated by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to implement cybersecurity awareness training for compliance purposes. While compliance is crucial, the appropriate implementation of such training goes beyond a mere checkbox. Simply having cybersecurity training software isn’t enough. It must be appropriately implemented, administered, and maintained.
Achieving a successful cybersecurity awareness training program requires substantial, ongoing efforts from your IT team. It is not a one-time installation of software but an ongoing process. One critical aspect is the implementation of User Account Control (UAC) procedures – particularly in the onboarding and offboarding of dealership employees and assigning user access privileges.
Without effective and ongoing UAC procedures, dealerships risk wasting money on training for employees that no longer work for the dealership – as many training programs are priced per user. Moreover, the inability to tailor training based on user roles, responsibilities, and rights can hinder the training program’s effectiveness.
Additionally, managing an effective training program involves assigning courses, curating content, and overseeing the training platform. These tasks require continuous attention and adaptation to evolving cybersecurity threats and employee needs.
The appropriate implementation of employee cybersecurity awareness training demands ongoing dedication from your IT team. Beyond meeting compliance requirements, investing in continuous training efforts helps create a vigilant workforce, reducing the risk of data breaches and safeguarding both your dealership’s assets and its reputation.