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How to Use Phishing to Help Secure Your Business

Some say the fall of man happened when Adam ate the poison fruit. I say it happened when Jerry from sales decided to give his bank information to a “Nigerian Prince” who desperately needed his help.

Despite being at the top of the food chain, humans have a tendency to lack basic common sense, especially when it comes to technology.

Though our devices have become much more secure, the human behind the screen has most certainly not. One of the biggest scams that thrives off human error is phishing, or a malicious email disguised as being harmless.

Phishing is not a new concept, but many people still fall for the same old tricks. In fact, 1 in 10 people will open an email attachment regardless of what it is.

This means that if your company has more than 10 employees, there is a good chance that phishing could be a legitimate threat to your business.

The only way to mitigate this kind of threat is to get ahead of it. Sending out fake phishing emails to your employees is one way to identify the people most vulnerable to these attacks, and can help prevent actual attacks from breaching company data.

The Set-Up

Before you start sending your employees fake email scams, it is important to make a plan. It would be nice to let your employees know that they will be tested and provide an outlet for them to report phishing emails. Do this by setting up an email account for your employees to report and screen potentially malicious emails.

Keep in mind, this is a long term, real time test. During the onboarding process, inform your new employees that they will be randomly tested. Then try and hit your employees with the fake phishing emails when they least expect it.

The Execution

The best way to learn is to make mistakes. Think of this experiment as a little quiz for your employees. If they fail, you’re providing a teachable moment without the cost of losing company data. When they fall for the fake scam, many tend to take it to heart, and think to themselves, “Why did I not see that?” Consequently, they never make the same mistake again.

It may seem like a strenuous process to create random phishing emails and facilitate sending them on a frequent basis, which is why there are technology security companies who provide this service, some even free of charge.

The Aftermath

It’s a no brainer to start investing in testing your company with fake phishing emails. These scams are becoming smarter and harder to spot. The FBI estimates that American businesses are losing roughly half a billion dollars each year to phishing scams, which can be completely prevented if employees are properly tested and equipped with the tools to identify this type of scam.

There is even a chance that you’ll get a discounted rate for cybersecurity insurance by taking these type of proactive measures. Nothing is better than knowing you’re saving money and creating a more competent workforce at the same time.

These scams are not going away. Do what you have to do to ensure human error doesn’t collapse your business.

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