Phishing simulations are an essential part of every company’s cybersecurity awareness training toolkit. This exercise allows you to test your company’s readiness and gauge the vulnerability of employees to cyberattacks.
Once you’ve successfully run a phishing simulation, what should you do next?
The Next Step After a Phishing Simulation
Usually, you should receive a report from the phishing simulation software provider you’ve used at the end of every phishing simulation.
Shameless plug for our Phishing Readiness product aside, not every report would include the same things. How the information is displayed or even the content presented will differ from one service provider to another.
As a more in-depth and data-driven complement to this topic, we’ve listed three essential reports you can analyze after your phishing simulations in a previous blog post.
With these pieces of information, you should seek to uncover any noticeable patterns in which actions your employees take when facing a malicious email and how vulnerable they are.
Take time to analyze which actions your employees take on each simulation. Do they ignore the email or report it? Do they click on any link? Do any of your employees share any valuable information, such as login credentials? Let’s say, for example, you send out a simulation email to test your employees, and a surprisingly high number of them click on the email. You can identify the problem here as the employees not being able to pick up on the fact that it is a phishing email, and you would need to educate them on that.
Acting on your employees’ actions is of paramount importance to your company’s cybersecurity. Analyzing their actions allows you to focus more on the weaker areas.
How to Prevent Your Employees From Falling for Actual Phishing Attempts?
Straightforward answer: provide cybersecurity awareness training! Keep in mind that consistency and frequency are key strategies when it comes to cyber training.
By analyzing the reports mentioned previously, you can better understand the current situation in your organization. For example, if you see that the marketing department has the highest click rate for one particular type of phishing email, you can focus on training them to recognize and counter that type of threat.
Training, at the basics, should consist of standard anti-phishing techniques such as checking the authenticity of the email source, reading emails carefully, avoiding clicking on suspicious links, etc. But more importantly, run separate campaigns to target specific vulnerabilities that you have found amongst your employees. To ensure real progress is achieved, training should be conducted frequently, alongside repeated phishing simulation campaigns to stay up to date.
Build Cyber Culture Beyond Traditional Training
While building cybersecurity awareness may sound tedious, we can prove it need not be so. There are many exciting activities that you could try out to engage your employees. For example, you could organize cybersecurity competitions or challenges. Or perhaps, you could hand out prizes to the best performing departments or employees. You could also consider allowing the best performing employees to share their methods and lead training as well!
By doing so, you are allowing employees to learn in a more conducive environment. They would feel more motivated and energetic to learn this way rather than be subjected to hours-long training sessions. Offering them bite-sized learning opportunities and non-tedious methods, such as our free Cyber Fitness Challenge, can effectively educate employees.