It is well known that the title industry is under attack.  Many agents are scrambling to keep up with the ever-changing landscape of protecting their finances, business and client data.  One key component to reducing risk to your business is training employees on the daily security risks they encounter.  Although maintaining a properly secure and well managed network is important it is no longer enough.  Employees are the frontline of every business and are viewed by attackers as the weakest link. Attackers expect that employees are not properly trained on what to look out for, how to identify phishing emails, or how to handle a call that comes in where someone is looking for information and most of the time they are correct.  Attacks are becoming more and more sophisticated and arming your employees with the proper knowledge is the best defense.

Building an effective Security Awareness Training Program should consist of:

  1. Live Training by Security Professional
  2. Online Security Awareness Training
  3. Phishing Awareness Training and Simulations
  4. Monthly Newsletter

The most effective Security Awareness Training Programs are programs that start with a baseline where success is measurable and easily identified.  To implement a successful program, it must be presented to employees as a positive addition to their daily work flow vs. a program with punitive implications.  The employee needs to feel empowered in their role and be encouraged to feel part of the overall security team for your business.  A successfully implemented program will help reduce the risk to your business through changing the behavior of your employees on how they respond to threats they face every day.

I have personally designed Security Awareness Training Programs for companies of all sizes.  I have witnessed definite changes in employee behavior, confidence in their day to day decision making when it comes to security risks, and successful use of their knowledge gained to prevent an attack from happening. 

The attackers are out there. When they come your way make sure your employees are armed with knowledge!

Melissa Ellis is a co-owner of Systems Management Enterprises, Inc. (SME), a Virginia based Information Technology and Security Company providing data center services, managed security, compliance solutions, and technical support to businesses nationwide.

Melissa has worked with businesses in the financial, medical, and professional services industries in a support and training role.  Over the last several years she has specifically worked within these industries on compliance initiatives and provided security awareness training. Melissa’s background includes studying Criminal Justice at Radford University and obtaining a better understanding of compliance by becoming a CHP. Melissa is passionate about educating businesses on how they can put the necessary layers of protection in place to safeguard their data. 

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