The current crisis has forced all of us to make changes that we otherwise wouldn’t have made. The upside, however, is that some of these changes may end up benefiting us well beyond the pandemic. One area that desperately needs this change is our view of cyber awareness — whether in remote environments or at the office. One report found that 91% of IT leaders simply trusted their employees to maintain safe security practices while working at home. This trust, it turns out, is misplaced, with 48% of employees saying that they are less likely to follow security practices at home. The bottom line is, if organizations want their employees to take cyber awareness in remote environments more seriously, they need to find a new way to help their employees create lasting behavior change.

Working from home creates unique challenges for their employees. They’re distracted, they’re doing their work on their personal devices, and they don’t have co-workers and managers there to motivate them. To build better cyber awareness while working from home, organizations should therefore focus on creating “micro-moments.” These micro-moments are small opportunities that contain four key elements:

  1. Short
  2. Frequent and consistent
  3. Engaging
  4. Involve positive reinforcement

By combing these elements, micro-moments sensitize employees to thinking about cyber awareness in their daily work, motivate them to continue learning, and keep them from thinking about cyber awareness as a burden or something that takes away their ability to get work done.

We know this works because it is the very foundation of Designed Privacy’s cyber awareness program, The PhishMarket™. The program combines phish simulations, daily micro-lessons, and detailed reporting to create behavior change that employee want to maintain. A study of The PhishMarket™ conducted by Stanford’s Peace Innovation Lab found that our program resulted in a 30% reduction in overall phish susceptibility in just four weeks, and 70% of participants said they would do the program again.

By incorporating a new a new type of cyber awareness training that focuses on creating micro-moments, organizations can help their employees create lasting behavior change, and the trust IT leaders have in their employees won’t be as misplaced as before.

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