Increasing phishing awareness requires developing the right mindset, behavior, and engagement in employees. This is where cybersecurity awareness training platform Hoxhunt looks to make a significant impact, by offering personalized and gamified training experiences that enhance workers’ cybersecurity awareness.

Through automated phishing attack simulations used as micro-learning opportunities, the platform takes workers as close to experiencing real-world phishing attacks as possible. It sends targeted emails to employees within an organization, which are highly personalized to mimic the deception used in modern phishing attacks.

The simulated attacks go out in varying frequency as opposed to regular intervals, making the attacks more unpredictable. There is also a variation on who receives these messages to keep everyone on their toes.

The rise of a training platform like Hoxhunt comes as a welcome addition to the cyber defense arsenal. ”Email is the biggest threat to enterprise security,” Hoxhunt CEO Mika Aalto shared. “That’s why human nature is the most important cybersecurity challenge to solve, instead of building incrementally better mousetraps at the technical perimeter.”

A Global Growth Trajectory

Today, the Helsinki-based company is setting its sights on helping enterprises avoid becoming phishing victims by making its platform more widely accessible. The startup recently received an additional $40 million in funding through a Series B round.

This influx of funds will be used to accelerate Hoxhunt’s growth through wider adoption in new markets like North America. The region needs to raise its cybersecurity awareness profiles since countries like the United States and Canada continue to be active targets of phishing campaigns.

Indeed, phishing attacks have been escalating, and businesses need to shore up their defenses against them. It is not enough to rely on conventional defenses like spam and web filters, because phishing is evolving. Today’s malicious actors are able to ensure that their fake emails and links to spoofed websites get through even the latest filters of sophisticated providers.

Once they do, workers become the enterprise’s last line of defense against devastating cyberattacks.

Continuous Upskilling as a Pivotal Defense

With this in mind, enterprises must focus on consistently upgrading their employees’ cybersecurity skills and reporting habits on an ongoing basis. Workers should not just be able to tell legitimate and fake messages apart, they should also react accordingly. Reporting phishing messages help improve spam filters, stops the messages from spreading, and prevents their potential malware attachments from getting into the network.

Interacting with the Hoxhunt button in their email client to flag any suspicious email they encounter allows employees to receive immediate feedback. Beyond Hoxhunt-generated simulations, actual threats can also be reported should employees encounter any of them.

Through this real-time feedback mechanism, employees can know if they have done the right thing every time they encounter suspicious messages. Deploying Hoxhunt is extremely simple, as administrators only need to integrate the platform and distribute the Hoxhunt button via the company’s designated email app.

Hoxhunt uses artificial intelligence at the core of its technology to make these simulations personalized, adaptive, and dynamic. The platform also provides a gamified experience. It uses data to map out each employee’s performance and progression and provides personalized training tracks. The feedback is not only designed to be informative but also positive and motivational to enhance the stickiness of the training program.

A Refreshing and Engaging Alternative

Corporate cybersecurity training is often viewed as tedious and cumbersome. Sessions are usually done through lectures and manuals which can be disengaging and do not provide opportunities for learners to apply and use what they have learned. The one-size-fits-all strategy of traditional training methods also discounts the individual differences of learners.

Given the potent and rising threat of phishing, enterprises need an effective program that delivers real results. Most security incidents are caused by human error, and phishing looks to exploit the human vulnerability for its success.

Phishing has been effective in creating the initial breach into enterprise systems, allowing hackers to further infiltrate the network. Some 91 percent of system breaches originate from phishing emails.

Following a successful phishing attack, hackers can perform various other attacks such as installing and spreading ransomware and stealing confidential and sensitive data. They can also conveniently execute scams like business email compromise (BEC) to siphon funds from companies. These cyberattacks cost businesses billions worldwide.

Knowing what is at stake for enterprises, building comprehensive security strategies to allay threats. Upgrading their workers’ cybersecurity skills will be a crucial element in achieving this.

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