Remember the Human

Remember the Human

Although the ‘human factor’ has been identified as the weakest link in constructing safe and secure digital environments, human intuition may also be the key to preventing many cyber attacks. Every piece of software or security monitoring system requires warnings to be interpreted by humans. Our brains also have the unique ability to process various stimuli as well as “hunches” that something is awry.

We often turn to technology to beef up our security posture when a better approach could be to delve deeper into human nature – and those norms, habits, and idiosyncrasies that we all have – and establish a security mindset that makes use of what we’re best at: sophisticated reasoning.

Trade some efficiency for better security

Human minds digest information faster than computers, thus cybersecurity measures take time to work. We may admit that implementing an outstanding cyber programme and maintaining cyber hygiene -such as basic email scanning or link scanning — adds a layer of inefficiency; nonetheless, employees typically struggle with this concept. Smartphones, productivity apps, and high-speed Internet connections have raised the bar for rapid access. To overcome this, it will take time, knowledge, and a cultural value of slowing down in order to be more security conscious.

Identify and eliminate internal threats.

We must consider insider risks as long as we have individuals in our organisations. People come to work with their untidy human lives. They are experiencing financial troubles. There are pressures in their lives.

There are two options available here. The first use technology to prioritise and compartmentalise information. To put it another way, any system accessed should be “need to know.” Establishing this policy early and carefully enforcing it eliminates ambiguity and temptation. The second approach focuses entirely on leadership and the use of human intuition. Depending on the size of the company, you may need to tweak this method.

Testing and education are both ongoing.

Bad performers are well-versed in human nature and take advantage of it. They go after the weak – those with authority, those with access, and those who don’t think they’re worth the effort. We’re seeing more advanced approaches, such as using social media to design something that will pique their target’s interest or persuade them to lower their guard.

Testing is also an element of the educational process. Send the phoney emails, practise hacking, and play war games that imitate an attack or a ransom situation. Even employees who are aware that they may be tested make mistakes, and these are learning moments for them to slow down, trust their instincts, and verify.

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