Employee Reporting

Caleb Townsend
Staff Writer   United States Cybersecurity Magazine

As we have talked about before, insider threats are responsible for around 43% of all data breaches. Among these breaches, 21% of them are intentional, malicious, and premeditated. As more small businesses come under attack, anxiety within the work place is at an all-time high. When facing the threat landscape, it is important to remember that fellow employees are capable of contributing to security of your company. Unfortunately, requesting employee reporting is something that a lot of companies struggle with.

Often, people are reluctant to report a fellow employee, for a variety of reasons. Reporting employees often makes people feel like they are getting involved in business that isn’t theirs. It makes workers feel like they’re putting themselves at risk or unnecessarily getting involved. The truth is that reporting allows your company to improve and strengthens your cybersecurity.

When it comes to a data breach, the sooner we know the better.

Security reporting is an important step in fortifying your defense. However, it is important to create the appropriate environment in which people feel empowered and encouraged to report for the right reasons. A lot of the responsibility for this rests on the company. Therefore, there are many steps any company needs to take if they want employee reporting to actually be effective and consistent.

Mitigate the risk of employee reporting.

Nobody wants to inconvenience their day. Work is hard enough without workplace politics. Reporting should not be a something that causes the reporter trouble. If there are concerns about privacy, employees will remain silent. Also, if they have to fill something out or do any extra work, most employees will just ignore the offense. More significantly, the risk perception around reporting must be low. No one wants to be deal with negative repercussions, judgement, or stigmas. Additionally nobody wants to have this reporting affect their work or personal lives in any way.

Help employees see the positives in reporting.

Most employees want to work for a company that is successful and thriving. Therefore, help employees understand that reporting creates a better environment for everyone, an open environment where coworkers can trust each other. Employees should be educated on the negative impacts of data breaches to understand the implications. Additionally, let people know that reporting is, at the end of the day, for the safety of everyone’s data, information, and devices.

Make employee reporting accessible.

The route one takes to employee reporting should simple, fast, and consistent. Create one email that everyone sends their complaints to. Have one person everyone talks to. Or install software on everyone’s computer. Don’t enforce strict and tedious forms that people have to fill out, and do not make people jump through hoops. Obscuring or complicating the reporting process only makes people report less.

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