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Human or insider factors are the main reasons for the increasing number of data breaches across the globe. Human error, negligence, or malfeasance is one of the highest causes of security events, increased by malicious or criminal attacks. Gamification plays an important role in this.
Insider threats are affecting the cost of companies hugely. In the real world, as per the report of the Ponemon Institute, the average cost of data breaches caused by employees is not less than $8 million (£6.1 million) per year.
When any of the employees click on phishing emails or unknowingly open suspicious documents, it causes many breaches accidentally. But it is possible to reduce the number of these breaches caused by mistake if the organization considered a new approach to providing training to their staff.
To reduce such breaches, most organizations are adopting gamification, i.e., educating employees to be more aware about security by using and with the help of games. Some games are not simple; they are complex with levels to pass and coins to earn. But it can also be as easy as sending out “test” phishing emails and rewarding employees for not falling for them.
As cyber crimes are increasing continuously, some organizations and governmental agencies are finding new ways to better engage their employees in truly effective cyber security training as well as recruit qualified cyber security candidates despite the many challenges. One strategy that is implied by more and more organizations is gamification.
But, you must be wondering, what is cyber security gamification? How does gamification improve cybersecurity training? What are the elements of successful cyber security gamification? This blog has the answers to all your questions.
What is Cyber Security Gamification?
Gamification is a method to engage users in solving problems and to encourage them by introducing elements of competition and rewards with the use of game mechanics and game thinking.
Most organizations are already using gamification to help with onboarding and customer engagement, but now they are realizing the benefits that gamification may also have for company-wide cyber security training.
79% of the participants, including corporate as well as university students, said that they would be more motivated and productive if the learning environment was full of games, as per the study by Pulse Learning. The same study also said that the advantages of gamification include improved motivation, increased engagement, better performance feedback, and enhanced productivity.
How Gamification Improves Cybersecurity Training?
The most challenging type of training is cybersecurity. The biggest cybersecurity risk for any business is the negligence of an employee. By following the protocols of the cybersecurity may drastically reduce the risk, but businesses have a hard time convincing employees to remember and actually follow through on these practices. Good training is obviously tricky, but it is a key to getting employees on board with cybersecurity. People tend to get stuck in their everyday internet habits and fail to understand what the big deal is if they use a less secure file transfer option, or dive into the company servers without a VPN. It is not an easy task to encourage employees to pay attention to protocol as well as integrate it into their everyday work lives.
Can you even expect that the employees change their work habits after watching a boring video and answering some quiz questions? Of course not! This is where the advantages of gamification play their key role; this type of training is especially useful for changing the everyday habits of people who use it.
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Elements of a Successful Gamification Strategy
These elements can be helpful to understand what makes the gamification strategy a successful one for businesses looking to infuse gamification into their cyber security training.
Including rewards in your strategy keeps the employees motivated and incentivized, so using rewards is one of the most important elements of a game-based approach.
Use Pictures & Videos
To keep the employees engaged, visual aids i.e. pictures and videos can help to get a point across and fast effect.
Short and Cut to the Point Training
Short training is the most effective training. 10 to 15 minutes sessions every other day for 6 weeks can be far more effective than a single 3 to 4 hours session.
Training through games is meant to be fun as it will make the training session successful without any boredom for the employees and will even motivate them to enjoy the sessions.
Understand the Audience
It is of utmost importance to design a game that will be loved by your audience to get the expected engagement. Understanding what employees like, what motivates them, and what devices they use most frequently will provide useful information from which it becomes easy to design an effective training program.
Think of Using AI and Machine Learning
The world of cyber security is growing on a regular basis as hackers are learning new and more approaches with each passing day. To keep up with cyber criminals, it becomes necessary for all types of organizations to use AI and machine learning in their game-based cyber training. New problems and data allow companies to continually update the gaming environment based on new problems and data.
Make Sure That Training is Ongoing
It is necessary to continuously keep track of an employee’s progression through a game. For that, training should be continuous and not limited to a one-time event. It is necessary to keep the employees engaged for the long term with certain rewards at certain milestones.
Cybersecurity training is an area that is most important in reducing business risk, but it suffers from a lack of motivation and knowledge retention. Gamification addresses these issues head-on while still being a serious learning tool that can provide deep data on learners and be integrated as a part of a bigger training program.
It is worth investing in the gamification strategy that will help to preserve the integrity of your organization’s computer systems by considering the prevalence of cybersecurity risks. Gamification has an ROI for organizations that is hard to ignore. And best of all, gamification can be integrated into regular cyber security awareness programs that should ideally be completed a couple of times a year, such as choosing strong enough passwords and avoiding phishing.
Want to know more about Gamification into Cyber Security and how it will help your organization? Sennovate experts are just a phone call away!
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