We need safe and secure work and business environments, but the increasing incidents of cybersecurity breaches are fuelling serious concerns around malicious cyber activity worldwide. Cybercriminals are making past extremely secure systems with their damaging tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTP). With the deep and rapid proliferation of digital, the surge in the amount of business data, and the dearth of trained cybersecurity talent, the importance of cybersecurity training is now paramount.
There is a pressing need to build proactive intruder detection and incident response systems with efficient cybersecurity talent like network security experts to back them up. It is estimated that around 67% of breaches are the result of social attacks like phishing, compromised emails, etc.
A comprehensive and modernized approach to cybersecurity training for your organization can reduce the concern to a great extent. It will not only help you encourage cybersecurity skilling but also develop a proactive culture for dealing with cyber threats.
This blog is a great starting point for creating a successful cybersecurity training program for your organization.
Importance of Cybersecurity Training
Is your company in danger? The Hiscox Cyber Readiness Report (2022) says that roughly half of all U.S. businesses have suffered a cyber-attack in the last year. The median cost of an attack in 2022 is $18,000, up from $10,000 in 2021. The biggest reason behind this is simply the increasing number of attacks. Healthcare and financial service firms are primary targets with almost every other industry with a digital presence being on the line.
Industry experts suggest that cybersecurity training is now a continuous process driven by the pressing need for cybersecurity professionals to upskill themselves regularly and instill a proactive approach to security.
Here Are Some Key Steps to Follow for Setting up a Cybersecurity Training Program in Your Organization
The points mentioned below will help you enable a seamless training journey. You can also choose to introduce online cybersecurity training.
1. Decide your goal
Before starting the training program, be sure of the outcome. It can simply be about understanding proper cyber hygiene and security risks or preparing a contingency plan in the scenario of an attack. Include the IT department and the rest of the organization to educate them about the threats and security initiatives.
2. Find out the latest trends in cybersecurity
The deeper penetration of technology makes way for newer risks. Take note of trends like insider threats, ransomware attacks, cyber warfare, and automated hacking, among many others. Find out if your system is fragile and measure the state of your organization’s cybersecurity. Assess the state of remote workers and guest users who are much more likely to be exploited by hackers. Take note of any issues that have been caused by human error and discuss them at the training session.
3. Set up the training session
After achieving the training goal, you need to work on the cybersecurity training topics. The training can be of a few types like,
- Hands-on training in a virtual lab environment
- Mentor-driven video call
- A combination of both
Hands-on cybersecurity training is a widely accepted approach for training cybersecurity professionals. The instructor-led virtual cybersecurity training sessions allow more clarity on the contingency drills with greater interaction. It bridges the gaps between the mentors and the employees, maximizing the training outcomes.
Instructor-led hands-on training in virtual environments plays a significant role in making cybersecurity training programs more impactful.
Here are some major focus areas for setting up cybersecurity training courses:
1. Add a realistic touch
Without real-time presentation, the content looks boring. Add simulators in the training or courses that can help the employees hone their skills. Employees can gain practical skills in virtual lab environments that are directly connected with their daily job roles. The customized hands-on virtual labs allow you to create an environment that ultimately depicts your company’s real-world digital scenario.
2. Create a standout cybersecurity policy
Cyber threats are constant. Taking adequate security measures can curb the chance of vulnerability. Establish a quality cybersecurity policy in your organization that can result in an unparalleled cybersecurity culture where everyone can stay safe, keeping their data secure.
3. Update the program
You must be aware of the latest trends in cybersecurity and update your training program on that basis. Make sure that the training program meets your goal, and if anything is pivotal, you need to amend your training program likewise. Consider the stats to gain an in-depth insight into your employees to measure their interaction during the sessions or need much clarification on the concept.
What Are the Benefits of Cybersecurity Training?
The prospects of cybersecurity training are profound. This saves high costs while building trust in the organization. Cybersecurity compliance and preparedness benefit the entire organization in the long run.
1. Saves hefty money
A report by Cybercrime Magazine suggests that global cybercrime will cause losses worth $10.5 trillion annually by 2025. In comparison, US companies currently spend $400 billion per year to stop cyber-attacks. Cybersecurity training needs some investments. Companies can limit numerous attacks by spending one time on training. Trained network security experts or specialists can save the big bucks spent paying for ransomware attacks, cleaning up the data, and fixing networks, accounts, and files that have already been compromised. Cybersecurity training is one of the top cost-reducing factors that help in saving significant expenses.
2. Build customer trust
The incidents of data breaches can impact customers’ trust. Data security builds a strong reputation for your company, making it a reliable brand. Cybersecurity readiness and compliance keep you at the top of the game, elevating your reputation among investors, and customers.
3. Builds your company talent asset
Training makes your employees competent and confident to handle the situation proactively during any crisis. Trained staff also reduces the downtime of your IT department. Training streamlines the cybersecurity process by eliminating the possibility of a data breach, which is necessary for a healthy work environment.
Hands-on training is imperative for engaging cybersecurity training programs. The instructor-led hands-on training adds more resiliency in setting up a path-breaking training program.
4. Role of Virtual Labs in Cybersecurity Training
Experts across the industry agree that trained cybersecurity professionals are hard to come by, and it is likely to stay that way for the foreseeable future. That way, investing in training and growing the cybersecurity talent pool is an urgent need. Cloud-based IT labs play a crucial role in virtual cybersecurity training, and they come with the following benefits:
5. Safe lab environments
An isolated virtual lab environment ensures that any other data on the device/network remains untouched, even if the trainee makes mistakes. The employees and mentors can easily focus on the training program, without worrying about data loss or other safety issues.
These labs are controlled virtual environments where trainees can practice ethical hacking without breaking into an organization’s secured network. It also helps them to build strategic plans to enforce enterprise security and thwart cybercriminals.
6. Hands-on labs in simulated environments
The hands-on labs help the employees gain experience by practicing first-hand instead of theoretical learning. Professionals can practice in real-life scenarios through the hands-on cybersecurity training labs.
7. Technology-driven labs
The virtual labs update themselves to the latest offerings, in turn, keeping your teams up to date.
8. Accessible anywhere
The employees can attend the training through the lab anytime, anywhere, only using a device, a web browser, and an internet connection. The cloud-based labs do not require downloads or physical labs.
9. Highly scalable
Virtual labs are highly scalable. Regardless of the number of participants, the management team can quickly configure and assign labs to all attendees.
10. Low maintenance cost
Virtual labs eliminate the need for on-prem infrastructure. This significantly cuts down the cost of maintenance and operations.
If you want to set up a comprehensive cybersecurity training program in your organization seamlessly, try CloudLabs. Setting up a lab in CloudLabs is less time-consuming and easy to do.
1. Zero-to-low management overhead
For a traditional lab set-up, the IT Admins, Lab Technicians, and Trainers invest a huge amount of time in building and maintaining the labs, and they must re-do the process for different training sessions, which requires enormous maintenance overhead. The cloud-based OpEx approach does not require network and equipment maintenance.
2. Greater scalability
10 or 10,000, these labs can be deployed at scale at short notice. They can also be scaled down as per requirement.
3. Variety of pre-built and Customized labs
CloudLabs already supports different Cyber Security certification courses, such as the one from Checkpoint, etc. You can find the available courses here. Users can also create customized labs and multiple labs can be deployed based on the requirements to help the employees in the training program.
4. Pay-as-you-go model
The users pay for only what they use instead of committing to long-term subscriptions.
5. 24*7 support
CloudLabs provides 24*7 support to instructors with all platform-related problems to ensure an easy-to-go experience.
These labs are ideal for:
- Students who wish to enroll in cybersecurity courses
- Individuals who have a day-to-day task of dealing with security solutions
- IT engineers, responsible for data security in big organizations
Instructor-led, hands-on training sessions are curated on an accurate digital environment that your company works within. It is operated as an ‘over the shoulder’ mode, which allows instructors to take complete control of employees’ demo environments to supervise if they are having any difficulties. Lab insights help to remain updated with how your employees are doing and where they might need help.
CloudLabs is a virtual IT labs platform that has constantly been improving the quality of cybersecurity and IT training with its hands-on labs. Leverage the virtual hands-on labs to utilize the benefits of cyber security training.
See CloudLabs in action.
Harshal Charde is an accomplished Principal Cloud Solution Architect at Spektra Systems, with extensive expertise in Microsoft Technologies, Hyper-V, Cloud Computing, and Virtualization. His proficiency in these areas allows him to design and implement cutting-edge solutions for clients, driving business growth and innovation.