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Security Awareness:

7 reasons why security awareness training is important in 2023

security awareness

We know we know, we’ve gone on about how security awareness is dead. We even dedicated a whole webinar to the topic (you can watch it on demand). But we’re not swallowing our words. We’re just adding more context!

So, let’s take it from the top, shall we?

What is security awareness training?

A definition to kick things off, then. 

Security awareness training is the process of educating people to understand, identify, and avoid cyber threats. The ultimate goal is to prevent or mitigate harmto both the organization and its stakeholdersand reduce human cyber risk.

Security awareness statistics

What can some recent figures reveal about the security awareness landscape? Well, strap in.


The average cost of a data breach in 2022 was just under $4.35 million. That’s an all-time high.


Only 1 in 9 businesses (11%) provided a cybersecurity awareness program to non-cyber employees in 2020.


1 in 3 data breaches involves phishing.


20% of organizations faced a security breach as a result of a remote worker.

Gulp! Pretty shocking, right. But should it be?

Most people just don’t have the knowledge, tools, and support they need to protect themselves and their organizations. And the average person’s cybersecurity knowledge is, well, patchy.

And it’s not their fault!

7 ways security awareness can make or break your 2023


So, how can you make your security program more effective

Glad you asked, because we just so happen to have some handy tips on that.

1. To prevent data breach and phishing attacks

Starting with the most obvious, information security awareness training helps prevent breaches.

Of course, the number of breaches a security awareness training program prevents is difficult to quantify.

In an ideal cyber security world, we’d be able to run a controlled trial comparing those who received training and those who didn’t. But that would be going a step too far for most organisations.

What we can do is demonstrate the return on investment (ROI) of security awareness software. How? By comparing the number of incidents before and after cyber security awareness activities. The resulting metrics can be used to glean an indication of ROI.

But we don’t even have to do the maths to tell you that data breaches can cost millions while security awareness training is relatively inexpensive. So, really, it doesn’t take much cybersecurity awareness training to get serious returns.

Data breaches cost UK organisations an average of £6.4 million. Investing in security awareness training reduces the risk of phishing attacks by about 50%.

1.Prevent Data Breach and Phishing Attacks

2. To build a culture of security

Developing a culture of security has long been seen as the holy grail for chief information security officers (CISOs). But that goal of rising the importance of security education training and awareness is notoriously hard to achieve.

With the help of security awareness training, more organizations are heading in the right direction.

Creating a culture of security means building security values into the fabric of your business. Training that covers situational awareness (why someone might be at risk) plus work and home-life benefits is a good way to bring people onboard.

Advanced training platforms can help monitor and develop a culture of security, making people your first line of defence against social engineering attacks.

Advanced security awareness campaigns measure, track and shape culture, making people an extra line of defence.

2. Build culture of security awareness

3. To make technological defences against cyber threats more robust

Technological defences and current awareness services are a valuable weapon in preventing breaches. But technological defences require input from people.

Firewalls need to be turned on. Security warnings need to be acknowledged. Software needs to be updated.

Few businesses today would dream of operating without technological defences. And yet, without security awareness training and cybersecurity education, technological defences cannot fulfil their potential.

Attackers today rarely bother trying to attack businesses through technological means only. Today’s attackers typically target people, as they are seen as an easy way into protected networks.

Technological defences require human input. Without security awareness training, many technological defences are not as effective as they could be.

3. Make technology defences roboust against cyber threats

4. To give your customers confidence

Consumers are increasingly aware of cyberthreats. And, as customers, they want to feel safe and secure.

That means a business that takes measures to improve cyber security will generate consumer trust. And we all know that a trusted business breeds customer loyalty.

This isn’t conjecture. A recent survey by Arcserve, shows that 70% of consumers believe businesses aren’t doing enough to ensure cyber security. And nearly 2 out of 3 consumers would likely avoid doing business with a business that had experienced a cyber attack in the past year.

For example, compromised endpoint security, phishing attacks, social engineering and data breach are common security incidents that could raise red flags in the mind of the consumer.

Clearly, customers pay attention to security credentials. When you introduce security awareness training to your employees, your customers see you as more responsible, which can only benefit your business.

More than 50% of all businesses must take cyber security precautions to either continue working with existing customers or to pitch for new business contracts.

4. Give your customers confidence in Cybersecurity

5. For compliance

To be clear, compliance alone is no reason to introduce security awareness training.

If you introduce training solely to comply with regulations, then you’re probably doing the bare minimum. And that’s not a good thing.

Still, more and more regulators are demanding specific industries implement security awareness training.

“Firms of all sizes need to develop a ‘security culture’, from the board down to every employee. […] Cyber security is a shared responsibility, and we take a co-operative approach to address this threat, working with government, other regulators, nationally and internationally on this important issue.” – CybSafe partner, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), on cyber resilience. Compliance can be a happy by-product of security awareness training. Introducing the right training content makes your organisation more secure and, in many industries, meets regulatory requirements.

Data breaches cost UK organisations an average of £2.9 million per breach. 82% of breaches involve the human element. Click To Tweet

Under the NIS directive, operators of essential services must ‘take appropriate and proportionate security measures to manage risks to their network and information systems’

5. Be cyber security compliant

6. To be socially responsible as a business

As WannaCry and NotPetya demonstrated in 2017, cyberattacks can spread quickly.

The more networks that become infected, the more at-risk other networks become. And one network’s weakness increases the overall threat for others.

That means the absence of security awareness training in one organisation makes other organisations vulnerable. It’s a little like leaving your house door unlocked – with the keys to your neighbour’s place inside.

Security awareness training doesn’t just benefit you. It benefits your customers, your suppliers and everyone else interlinked with your network.

A vulnerable network makes connected networks more vulnerable. Like leaving your house door unlocked with the keys to nextdoor waiting inside.

Security awareness training benefits

7. To improve employee wellbeing

It’s well-documented that happy people are productive people.

So, it’s worth remembering that security awareness training doesn’t just keep people safe at work. It keeps them safe from cyber security threats, phishing and social engineering in their personal life, too.

Remember, if cyber security awareness training does what it’s supposed to do in threat prevention, it isn’t just an employer benefit. It’s an employee benefit, too.

Security awareness training keeps people safe at work and at home. It benefits employers and employees alike.

7. Improve your employees wellbeing

The slow death of security awareness is happening

The Security awareness is dead (or dying) free eBook shows you how to build on security awareness training to influence real and lasting change. In this eBook you will learn:


Why the security awareness is dead (or dying)


How to build on security awareness training to influence real and lasting behavior change


What are the key elements of a successful security training program?


What are some of the most effective ways to train your people?

Security awareness is dead or dying ebook

Security Awareness Training FAQs