As small and medium-sized business owners, we make every effort to ensure that our networks are protected from malware, viruses, and spam. It only takes one user to click on a link in a spam or phishing email to bring down the whole network. How do we educate our users so that they become critical consumers in a high-tech workplace?
To answer this question, let’s first define a critical consumer. A critical consumer is a person that filters the information being presented to them by various mediums. In the office, the mediums can be email, websites, social media applications like Facebook, Instagram and others. To be a critical consumer one must take a moment when viewing information from these various outlets and determine what the source of the information is trying to accomplish.
Since email is the main source for many of the most damaging malware infections we are going to provide some email related guidelines that you can share with your employees to help make them better critical consumers. To check out our full list of 15 tips for educating your employees about email safety, download our checklist: Educating Employees: Becoming a Critical Consumer. Here are five best practice tips for email safety:
- Use strong passwords.
- Don’t open an email attachment unless you know who sent it and/or you are expecting it.
- If you receive an attachment from someone you don’t know and you are not expecting it, delete it immediately or contact your IT administrator and have them investigate it.
- Don’t share passwords with anyone.
- Always log out of your machine at the end of the day.
Your network security is only as strong as its weakest link and in most cases, the weakest link is the employee. Learn to be a critical consumer and pass those skills on to your employees so you can rest assured that your network is in good hands.
For more helpful guidelines on becoming a critical consumer in the workplace, download our checklist. Click here to download SumnerOne’s checklist, Educating Employees about Email Safety: Becoming a Critical Consumer.
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Originally published January 2, 2018, updated April 20, 2018