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Aside from the usual jokes about brewing endless pots of coffee for programmers and systems administrators, what does coffee have to do with the security of your network?

The other day, during an online group meeting, we were discussing how everyone is getting their coffee these days when coffee houses are closed and how everyone likes to brew their coffee. While most answered with the usual Keurig or drip coffee makers, I answered that I drink “Cowboy Coffee” (yes, it’s a real thing; just do a YouTube search for Cowboy coffee and you’ll see what I mean). As the “IT person” in the group, it was pointed out that the most technical person in the group used the least technical means of getting (in my opinion) the best coffee. And it reminded me that not all business problems necessarily require a technical solution to fix.

And so, it is with your network security. While it is true that good security requires layers upon layers of technical solutions—firewalls, malware protection, email scanning, content scanning, and filtering, and so on—often the weakest link in the security chain are people. Or more specifically, your employees.

While email scanning is absolutely necessary, the bad guys are too often one step ahead of the algorithms and those who are constantly tweaking the email filters. Have you ever received an email claiming to be from a company that looked nearly indistinguishable from the real thing? That means that your email filter couldn’t recognize it as a bad email and let it pass through. Now, what if that email went to one of your employees? Could you trust that they would recognize it as bad and discard it or would they open it, potentially infecting your network with ransomware?

And so, while we layer on the technical solutions, ultimately it comes down to simple, old-fashioned teaching. You train employees on using your line of business software. You train your employees on how to provide service to your clients. You train your employees on turning on and off the physical security to the workplace. But if you’re not providing security awareness training to your employees and contractors, and whoever may have access to your network or email system, about keeping your network secure, then your network security is only as strong as the employee who can’t pass up the latest offer or bogus phishing message. And while the training may be delivered through technical means, regarding technical subjects, like password security and spotting phishing messages, the training is about people. Something as simple as brewing a pot of coffee the old-fashioned way!

Call us today at 443-817-2869 to let us discuss how to begin teaching your employees about their part in securing your network!