While you agreed to allow your employees to work from home for an extended period during the COVID-19 pandemic, you didn’t necessarily take the proper measures to ensure a smooth transition from a cybersecurity standpoint.

Instead of partnering with an IT consulting firm to assist with ensuring your networks and systems are still fully protected from cyber threats when your workforce is working remotely, you rushed the move to comply with your governor’s shelter-at-home order.

So, what was something you may have forgotten?

How about cybersecurity awareness training? Does that ring a bell? If you’ve been educating your employees on the ever-evolving threat landscape, that’s great. You’re ahead of the game. But if you haven’t even considered it, you’re not alone.

Kaspersky surveyed 6,000 workers worldwide about working from home during the COVID-19 pandemic. What the cybersecurity solutions provider’s researchers found was astonishing:  At least 73 percent of the survey’s respondents said they weren’t provided with cybersecurity awareness training when they started working remotely.

That isn’t very comforting to think about for a variety of reasons.

Consider this: Cybercriminals have been exploiting coronavirus fears from the start — and they’ve been successful in their efforts. In fact, 27 percent of the survey’s respondents have received COVID-19-related phishing emails.

After reading that, you’re probably now getting a bit worried about the growing number of COVID-19-related phishing scams and malware campaigns — and you should be.

Here’s the good news: It’s not too late to deploy cybersecurity awareness training.

What’s important is that you find the time to educate your employees on cybersecurity threats immediately. Many of your employees are accessing sensitive company data on unsecured networks. Educating them on how they can adequately protect their systems and networks is key to protecting your business and its customers.

Consider the following when developing your cybersecurity awareness training program:

  • Your employees should know how to identify a phishing email.
  • Involve company executives. They should lead the company’s cybersecurity efforts and practice what they preach. Cybersecurity is every executive’s job.
  • Patch management is essential. Remind your employees about the dangers of not updating systems and networks.
  • Train your employees frequently and often. Even when the COVID-19 pandemic is over, train your employees in cybersecurity awareness. It’s not a one-time event.

Whether they’re working from home or the office, your employees are your first line of defense against cyberattacks. Take this time to educate them on how they can better protect themselves, your company, and your customers from an increasingly sophisticated threat landscape.