Cyber Awareness

Phishing Simulations: the Key Element of Your Cybersecurity Awareness Program

Phishing Simulations: the Key Element of Your Cybersecurity Awareness Program

After reading parts one and two of our “Phishing Simulation: Learn The Basics” series, you’re ready to plan and execute an important piece of your cybersecurity awareness program.

On this third and last blog post of our series, we’ll get to the most important part of this journey. Continue reading to understand how phishing simulations help you monitor, measure, and mitigate employee error risks.

Why Perimeter Defense Cybersecurity Is Not Enough By Itself

As reported by Insurance Business Magazine, a recent study by Akamai says:

Roughly 1 in 5 phishing attacks go undetected despite blacklists.

If a phishing attack is able to bypass a perimeter defense solution or blacklist, then your employee population becomes your complementary line of defense. Having a conditioned workforce that can identify and report phishing attacks goes a long way to create a complementary layer of security to protect critical company assets and information.

How Do Phishing Simulations Help?

Phishing simulations are a key element of cybersecurity awareness training. By learning to recognize and respond to simulated phishing attacks, employees build confidence in their ability to maintain vigilance against real cyber threats. In addition to the training, employees also get to experience the different scenarios of a phishing attack without actually jeopardizing millions of dollars in real-world losses. By removing the stigma associated with committing cybersecurity mistakes, employees can progressively become the company’s strongest asset against cybercriminals.

Phishing simulations should be your first step when running cybersecurity awareness programs, and its results will help you drive the exact training your employees need, as well as educating them on how to recognize and avoid potential threats.

The crucial benefit of a phishing simulation campaign is to drive long-lasting employee behavior improvements and set your employees as a key element in your company’s cyber defense strategy.

How Phishing Simulations Work

The ideal phishing simulation will resemble a real-world cyber-attack. The email template and landing page should be realistic and credible and can include an endless set of common corporate email themes such as password reset, HR communications, bank details, and others, always inciting employees to open email attachments, click on links, or entering credentials.

The frequency of phishing simulation emails is up to you, but we recommend you do it frequently enough to make sure your employees are being educated on a regular basis.

When choosing the right tool to help you run phishing simulations, consider the importance of having the right templates that match every department of your company – the more customizable the templates are, the better. Attackers do their best in personalizing the emails they will send to an organization, therefore you should think the same way to better protect your workforce.

Also, you might prioritize a product that automates and makes your job easier on integrating with other cybersecurity awareness initiatives. You might have come across predictions on the shortage of cyber talent in the next few years as cybercrime continues to grow, and this is one more reason why automating phishing simulation campaigns should be your priority. Automation will help increase your team’s efficiency while eliminating time-consuming tasks.

Benefits of Phishing Simulations

Thanks to employee behavioral data, phishing simulations allow companies to identify vulnerable employees that exhibit a high need for more phishing-related training. This information can then be used to create your company’s risk score and set future plans on how to further develop their employees’ strengths and mitigate their isolated weaknesses. In summary, the results you get from a phishing simulation campaign guide you to address your teams’ needs in terms of cybersecurity awareness training.

Phishing Simulations and cybersecurity training are complementary strategies that should always walk together to keep your workforce aware and protected against cyberthreats.

Fight Off Phishing With the Right Help

Right-Hand’s Phishing Readiness product can help you condition employees to become less susceptible to malicious phishing emails, by creating and launching custom phishing simulations. Schedule a personalized demo and see our product in action:

Start building cyber culture today!

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Join our upcoming webinar on April 29, "Building Cyber Culture in a Hybrid Work Environment"