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Challenges in Securing the Human Operating System

No matter how much focus and attention your organization puts into security solutions including anti virus, firewalls, and email filters, there is another large component of cybersecurity that is ultimately leaving your organization vulnerable to attacks. This component is commonly known as the Human Operating System. The HumanOS is made up of all of the users that have access to and use your network. Every time a human is logged in or accessing your network, they are a risk to your organization's security.

Join us for a free webinar where our CEO and President get together to discuss how you can "Patch" your Human Operating System on Tuesday October 27, 2:00 pm (EST). For more information and to register visit:

Because technology alone can no longer secure an organization, organization's must look at how they can educate their human operating system to avoid falling victim to social engineering schemes where their human instincts could lead them into trouble and ultimately put your organization at risk. It is EVERYONE'S job to stay aware of threats and be educated to know how to best avoid falling victim to these attacks. While Microsoft, Windows, and other industry leaders are regularly providing security patches, perhaps the Human Operating System is the needs "patched" through regular training and education. While people are the primary target for many hackers, whether or not they are the weakest link is up to you and your organization.

How is the Human Operating System Similar to other Operating Systems?

  • Frequent Updating: most operating systems require frequent updating in order to remain secure. The HumanOS is no different, it requires continuous, active updating.

  • Changing Risks: Over time, new programs, code or functionality are added to most operating systems. This means that the steps you take to secure them today will continue to evolve and change. When securing the HumanOS you need to ensure that you are regularly updating your awareness program to address changing human risks.

How is the Human Operating System Different from other Operating Systems?

  • Emotions: Unlike other operating systems, the HumanOS has feelings. In order to change behaviors you must engage users and create a program where people have an eagerness and a want to learn. A key way to engage is to focus on how people will personally benefit from security awareness training. Focusing on how the vast majority of risks people face at work are the same they face at home such as email, passwords, mobile devices, and social networking makes people more likely to pay attention.

  • Misconceptions: There are often built in misconceptions that people have about security that you will have to address. For example you may have many people who believe they are not a target because their information or systems have no values. People also often feel they have no role in security or assume their role is to menial or not technical enough to come with security responsibilities. They often do not realize that their actions have a direct impact on the security of the entire organization.

Key Points to Securing the Human Operating System

  • Train with Regularity: the thing about humans is they can be forgetful and they can be unpredictable. This is why a program that trains your users just once on security, often times will not work in the long term. You need to be regularly training your users and keeping security top of mind.

  • Keep it Simple: while cybersecurity can be quite complicated and complex, your users are not all technical and have many other tasks on their mind to keep track of. It is vital that you keep your security awareness programming and training, easy to understand for all users so that they don't simply ignore the training.

  • Consider testing your users regularly: while training is important, you may want to consider regularly testing your users to see where there are weaknesses and providing additional training on areas or with specific users who are struggling in certain areas.

We're continuing the discussion of Patching the Human Operating System in our upcoming webinar October 27 at 2:00 pm. For more information and to reserve your spot visit:


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