Cyber Security: Secure the human

Q. Are your employees a cyber security asset or liability?
Tuesday, June 21, 2016

A. Your employees are your greatest asset, but when it comes to cyber security, they are also your biggest threat. According to a recent study by McAfee, 43% of all company data loss or breaches are caused by employees and only half are accidental. How do we prevent such a catastrophe?  We secure the human!

Last month, we focused on how to prepare your cyber security defense, and next month we will focus on your patients/customers. This month, we’ll discuss four ways you can prevent a security breach from the inside. 

• Educate your employees on proper cyber security measures and retrain regularly to keep employees on their toes.  As new cyber threats present themselves, make your team aware and prepared!

• What if your employees access their email or company programs on their mobile devices from a non-secure Wi-Fi network?  You can either ban your employees from accessing company email while using public Wi-Fi, provide a mobile broadband device or set their mobile devices to automatically run the company’s VPN (virtual private network) when using public Wi-Fi.

• A practice we highly recommend for companies whose employees regularly access company email or files on-the-go is two-factor authentication. This is an extra layer of security that requires a user to provide two means of identity confirmation before accessing company

• When you’re an involved leader, you are aware of major events in your employees’ lives and can be prepared for times when an employee could be vulnerable to a security breach.

In summary, you’ll need to know your team, educate them and secure how they access your information. The choice is yours: Are they a cyber security asset or liability?

Rob Duryea is president of VGM Forbin. Reach him at