Security Awareness Training: 6 Key Compliance Requirements

by | July 17, 2021 | Cybersecurity, ATTACK Simulator, How to

Personal data protection is a matter of utmost importance in the ever-growing digital world
Personal data protection is a matter of utmost importance in the ever-growing digital world

With the ever-growing cyber threats and costly attacks, legislative bodies have established international standards and regulations to compel IT organizations to provide security awareness training for their employees. Otherwise, they are liable to costly fines and penalties.

If you want to avoid these nasty consequences, then keep reading to find out how ATTACK Simulator’s Security Awareness Training can help you achieve the necessary certifications and become compliant.

Why should you implement security awareness training in your company and comply security-wise?

First off, cybersecurity training is a small investment with great benefits. It may one day save your business from a much more expensive attack. The demand for information security is at its highest nowadays, when cyberattacks hit so frequently and unannounced in the online universe.

Ignorance is bliss, but not when it comes to cybercrime. Acknowledging these threats’ existence and magnitude and installing risk management policies are critical in maintaining your company’s data secure and its reputation flawless (need we also say, your money in your pocket?)

Any organization working with sensitive customer data should comply with a series of information security international standards to confirm their professionalism and integrity.

Certification means being compliant with the guidelines of the certification you want to achieve. Meeting these security requirements will legitimize your good business practices and make you stand out from the crowd in a very competitive scenery.

There are a series of certificates you must achieve to become compliant
There are a series of certificates you must achieve to become compliant

Ongoing Training with ATTACK Simulator

You should also keep in mind that implementing security measures and training must be an ongoing process to get the best results and maintain your certification. Therefore, we recommend constant training to help your employees keep up with the ever-evolving cyber threats.

This is why ATTACK Simulator was designed as a long-term running program, with training packages up to two years.

We’re also working on making available a SaaS (software as a service), which is best fitted to small-medium companies and will enable our customers to have a monthly subscription.

6 Most Common Security Regulations and Standards you need to comply with

In this article, we’ll introduce you to the six most common certifications that security awareness training will help you achieve and why overlooking them can be a huge (and quite costly) mistake.

1. ISO/IEC 27001: Information Security Management

ISO/IEC 27001 is the leading international standard for information security management systems (ISMS) published by the International Organization for Standardization.

ISO/IEC 27001 requires the management to:

  • Systematically examine the organization’s information security risks, taking account of the threats, vulnerabilities, and impacts;
  • Design and implement a coherent and comprehensive suite of information security controls and/or other forms of risk treatment (such as risk avoidance or risk transfer) to address those risks that are deemed unacceptable;
  • Adopt an overarching management process to ensure that the information security controls continue to meet the organization’s information security needs on an ongoing basis.

The standard validates the company’s dedication to securing its customers’ information and compliance with relevant legislation. Its primary focus is protecting the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of data.

Note that ISO/IEC 27001 is designed to cover much more than just IT. Although it is not mandatory, one of its great benefits is that it will propel you ahead of your competitors. Between a company that officially guarantees their information security and one that can’t, it’s clear as day what a customer would choose.

Implementing security awareness training in your organization, such as the one provided by ATTACK Simulator, is a mandatory stage in obtaining the ISO/IEC 27001 certificate.

2. PCI-DSS – Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard

Compliance with this standard is meant to protect customer financial data by requiring all merchants who accept card payments to implement clear data protection protocols. PCI-DSS covers all organizations that store, process, or transmit cardholder data, which means pretty much all businesses.

In order for your company to be awarded a PCI-DSS certificate, you must establish and apply security measures, among which running a security awareness training program that educates staff handling cardholder information on how to protect such data.

In case of non-compliance, your company can have its ability to accept card payments withdrawn. In addition, you could also face additional fines, as not complying with this standard is a GDPR violation.

The security awareness training we provide teaches employees how to properly deal with and successfully deflect cyber threats, which brings you one step closer to becoming PCI-DSS certified.

3. HIPAA – Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act

Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) applies to healthcare providers that handle patients’ health information. This includes organizations such as hospitals, doctors, psychologists, or pharmacies.

One of the main purposes of this regulation is to assure the privacy and security of patients’ information. Thus, implementing a solid security awareness training program in your company, along with administrative and physical defenses to ensure the safe storage of medical data, is a mandatory step in the process of achieving this certificate.

ATTACK Simulator’s Security Awareness Training program is a vital step in becoming HIPAA certified.

4. GLBA – Gramm Leach Bliley Act

Formerly known as the Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999, GLBA (the Gramm Leach Bliley Act) is a U.S. federal law that focuses on protecting financial data. It requires financial institutions, such as companies that offer consumers financial products or services (loans, financial or investment advice, or insurance), to explain their information-sharing practices to their customers and safeguard sensitive data.

Not complying with this act can lead to operations disruption and significant fines.

Financial information, like other forms of sensitive information related to your customers, should always be protected and carefully dealt with. Luckily, ATTACK Simulator’s got you covered on this one, too – we offer a comprehensive Security Awareness course that educates your employees on the importance of safeguarding this data and how to do it successfully.

5. FISMA – Federal Information Security Management Act & NIST SP 800-53 – National Institute of Standards and Technology Special Publication 800-53

FISMA – Federal Information Security Management Act – covers all federal agencies and requires them to abide by specific procedures and protocols to ensure information security.

In addition, the Special Publication 800-53, developed by the National Institute of Standards and Technology, offers guidelines regarding suggested security measures that federal agencies need to implement to obtain the FISMA certificate.

Security awareness training is much needed, especially when taking into account how often cyberattacks hit federal agencies.

Choose to implement ATTACK Simulator’s Security Awareness training program in your company to comply with FISMA and become certified.

6. GDPR – General Data Protection Regulation

GDPR (the General Data Protection Regulation) applies to all organizations and businesses that handle the personal data of EU subjects. It concerns the collecting and processing of such data and is the most rigorous and extensive regulation the EU has ever enforced in this field.

The purpose of this law is to ensure data security and privacy. Non-compliance can lead to harsh consequences, such as charges of $20 million or 4% of the annual revenue.

Any organization that handles sensitive data of EU citizens should seek to comply with the procedures recommended by GDPR by implementing a security awareness training program, among other measures.

We considered GDPR compliance at all times when designing ATTACK Simulator, so you can rest assured that our Security Awareness program will efficiently educate your employees on data security using real-life phishing simulations and educational materials.

Final thoughts

Although there are more security regulations, other than those listed above, they all have in common the same starting point when trying to become compliant and certified: security awareness training.

Besides obtaining the necessary certifications, it will tangibly benefit your company, as your staff will be properly prepared to handle sensitive data and protect it from all kinds of cyber threats.

Security Awareness Training will provide your employees with the necessary knowledge regarding data protection
Security Awareness Training will provide your employees with the necessary knowledge regarding data protection

This is where we come in. You’re in good hands, as we’ll offer you a customizable, easy-to-understand and apply, automated, affordable, long-term solution. Oh, and we’ll be there for you at all times to guide you through the process.

Choose ATTACK Simulator and get your quote today here.


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by Diana Panduru

Content writer for Attack Simulator. Passionate about all things writing and cybersecurity, and obsessed with driving. I sometimes indulge in pencil drawing, poetry, and cooking for fun.

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