The common notion among working professionals is that HR is exclusive from events of information leaks, data hacks, and identity thefts when they happen.
But this is far from the truth. The reality is that HR professionals handle a lot of sensitive business data. This includes employee personal information, salary details, bank details, etc., which can cause massive losses if leaked. This puts HR professionals in a very crucial role where they can, in fact, be the first ones to detect an oncoming cybersecurity attack.
Identifying An Organization’s Security Risk
The first step to preventing a security attack is recognizing it. HR can determine an organization’s risk exposure by regularly conducting a risk assessment. Regular assessments will bring to light what risky employee behaviors can put the organization at risk of data breaches or malware threats.
Implementing Access Control Of Employee Data
HR has access to a lot of sensitive employee and organizational data which can be protected in many ways. One way is putting in place different access controls to important information. This will allow only a specific set of people to access and use the data stored on an organization’s network.
Participate In Security Policy Making
HR can be a valuable asset when it comes to establishing security policies. The role of HR in policy-making and implementation starts during recruitment. During this time, they can run consensual pre-employment background checks to know their prospective hires better. They also need to issue employees with a code of conduct and sign it before hiring them. This can highlight the company’s policy against data theft and misuse.
In addition, HR can encrypt all employee files and have policies on how employees can access them. HR can also work with the company’s management when employees violate guidelines and can take part in any investigations against offenders.
Educate Employees On Cybersecurity
The HR department can play a crucial role in employee information security training. They can start by integrating security training as a part of new-hire orientations. This includes emphasizing the threats that the firm is vulnerable to and what employees should do to prevent them from happening.
The training modules should push the understanding that a firm’s cybersecurity is everyone’s responsibility. This makes it easy to implement policies and even promote the security culture within the organization.
The rising threat of cybercrime has made online security a task for all the organization’s employees and is no longer restricted to IT and cybersecurity experts. By implementing the insights mentioned above, HR professionals too can contribute positively to a firm’s cybersecurity.