When it comes to cybersecurity risks, business owners usually think of external threats like malware, man-in-the-middle attacks, and distributed-denial-of-service attacks, among others. Business owners sometimes fail to consider the internal threats to their company’s security posture in the form of their employees.
How big of a cyber threat are employees?
Your staff can be the weakest link in the security chain. Your employees may be reusing passwords across their accounts, making your company network vulnerable to attacks. Others may use unsecured public Wi-Fi hotspots to connect to your network, which gives hackers a way to break into your systems. Some users may also unwittingly fall for phishing scams, leading them to share account credentials with unauthorised parties. According to the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner, such poor security practices and scams are to blame for most data breaches.
To mitigate these risks, your company should conduct regular security awareness training for employees. Doing so will help them become your company’s first line of defence rather than its weakest link. But when conducting training sessions, holding cybersecurity lectures isn’t enough. You must also test your employees’ knowledge by running phishing simulations.
What is a phishing simulation?
A phishing simulation involves sending out emails to employees and seeing who falls for it. By conducting this exercise, you can test your employees’ ability to spot and adequately respond to phishing scams to identify which employees require more training.
Why should Australian companies conduct phishing simulations?
Based on ReportCyber’s figures, fraud cybercrime — mostly phishing scams — is the most reported type of cybercrime for the financial years 2019–2020 and 2020–2021.
Compared to other countries, Australia fared the worst at defending against phishing attacks, with 92% of its organisations falling victim to such attacks in 2021 — up by 53% from 2020. In 2021, one in five Australian organisations also suffered ten or more successful phishing attacks — more than any other country.
Overall, the Australian Cyber Security Centre’s Annual Cyber Threat Report 2020–21 found that cyberattacks against Australian organisations continue to increase in frequency, scale, and sophistication over the years. While spam filters can effectively block some phishing emails, newer and more sophisticated ones still manage to get through.
The good news is that you can leverage advanced tools like Sophos Phish Threat to simulate many realistic and challenging phishing attacks in just a few clicks.
What should you look for in a phishing simulation tool?
Before you invest in a phishing simulation tool, make sure it has the following features:
Phishing email templates
Many phishing simulation tools let you craft your fake phishing emails from scratch or use customisable templates. Sophos Phish Threat, in particular, has over 500 email threat templates of various difficulty levels, from beginner to expert. As part of Sophos’s comprehensive line of cybersecurity solutions, this phishing simulation tool is constantly updated. Data is based on the millions of emails, URLs, files, and others SophosLabs analysts gather worldwide, daily. Sophos Phish Threat simulates even the latest phishing tactics, so you can be sure your company’s training stays relevant.
In-depth simulation results reporting
Phishing simulation tools offer post-test reports. These show how many employees failed the current test, who are most at risk, and your organisation’s overall risk level. You can view such data at a glance using Sophos Phish Threat’s dashboard, which also displays other details like:
- Number of users who successfully reported the phishing campaign (i.e., reporters)
- Organisational trends of reporters and non-reporters (i.e., users who failed the test)
- Testing coverage
- Days since the last phishing campaign
The best phishing simulation tools provide on-the-spot training to non-reporters so they can learn when they interact with a mock phishing email. Such testing and training integration is available in Sophos Phish Threat. Not only that but this tool is also packed with over 30 security awareness training modules, tackling both security and compliance topics.
You can also connect Sophos Phish Threat with Sophos Email to identify who were warned or blocked from visiting a website due to its risk profile. You can automatically enroll them into targeted phishing simulations and training to mitigate your company’s security risk.
Are you interested in leveraging Sophos Phish Threat? You can turn to Empower IT Solutions. As a Gold Sophos partner, we can boost your company’s cyber defences by deploying Sophos Phish Threat and other advanced security solutions. Get in touch with us today.