#Lets Talk Nerdy

October is a lot of things – of course, kids everywhere are circling October 31st as one of their favourite days of the year and we will be celebrating Thanksgiving on Monday, October 11th. Personally, I love Thanksgiving – the opportunity to share thanks and love with my family and my kids over an amazing feast.  But let’s not forget that it’s also the official month to give thanks to CyberSecurity! That’s right, October is cybersecurity month – and as a business owner, am I ever thankful!

I hear you, Cybersecurity is rarely an exciting topic – but what if I told you that Cybersecurity could be fun? I bet that you would bend over laughing and tell me to go take a walk. That I’ve lost my marbles and obviously can’t relate to the real world of business owners that would rather spend their time and resources learning how to grow their business, or build their fan base of happy customers than listen to more cybersecurity fear mongering or news pieces.

Believe it or not, I’m with you. While I will gladly take up any opportunity of talking nerdy with you – nothing gets me more excited than talking business, discussing our next moves, latest ideas, or how we overcame the impossible (my biggest resilience test as an entrepreneur came in this last quarter, so call me up for a coffee and I’ll tell you all about it!). But as any smart investor will tell you – you would be an idiot if you didn’t protect that investment! And let me tell you, there are a lot of idiots out there…

Here is the thing – 97% of employees in a wide array of industries are unable to recognize a sophisticated phishing email from a legitimate one. Considering that 90% of cyberattacks that result in a data breach begins with a phishing email – then we have a whole lot of reasons to be concerned!

If you don’t know what a phishing attack is, then we need to have a serious conversation and train you and your staff as you are likely the biggest threat to your organization. (In the meantime – head over to [ https://avenirit.com/phishing/ ] and watch our informational video – like yesterday.)

While cybersecurity tools you (should have) put in place will help prevent cyber attacks, nothing is 100% guaranteed to prevent them, especially if your staff unknowingly lets them in your network. This is one of the reasons that we have seen the largest increase of phishing and ransom attacks around the world ever! Up 600% since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic! When you consider that 1 in 3 employees are likely to click the links in phishing emails, it’s no wonder that 65% of active cybercriminals use phishing as their primary method of attack and continue to increase and perfect their art of scamming your team in hopes to steal your data and hold you hostage. In fact – a successful phishing/ransom attack will yield the cybercriminal on average $130,000!

At this point, you may be thinking “Well, I’m doing everything I can to protect myself!”. But are you? Long gone are the days that simple antivirus and backup strategy is enough (you’d be shocked how often we find businesses that don’t even do this properly!). We need to consider much more – including staff training, cyber insurance, advanced email threat protection, intrusion prevention, and the list goes on and on…

Now, as I mentioned previously – a big percentage of intrusions are caused by phishing emails and lack of proper user training. This is why we recently invested in and are in the process of rolling out an easy to use and dare I say “fun” cyber security tool that will not only equip you and your staff with online cybersecurity training, dark web monitoring, and simulated phish testing – but also adds an element of gamification with an organizational leaderboard for your employees that complete the most training, score highest on mini-quizzes, don’t click on simulated phishing emails or reports legitimate unsafe emails (by clicking on an integrated Outlook plugin). We recommend adding incentives for your team to win the leaderboard – making this a fun platform to build superhuman firewalls – thus protecting you from the #1 threat facing your organization: YOU!

It’s not like me to get all “salesy” on you – but please reach out to me at (204) 289-4384 if you want to learn more on how we can bring some fun into your cybersecurity stack. And on October 11th, when your family goes around the table to share what they are thankful for – don’t forget your Cybersecurity!

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