October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month in the United States. If you asked anybody that makes their living in the IT or Security industry, they would tell you that every month should be Cybersecurity Awareness Month. In recent years, cybersecurity has become a major concern for many businesses, and rightfully so. There are thousands of attacks every day committed against businesses of all sizes. Unfortunately, many businesses fail to take action against these cyberattacks until it is too late and valuable company information becomes compromised.

Because it is impossible to track every email that appears in every employee’s inbox, email proves to be the attack vector of choice for cybercriminals. According to the State of Email Security Report 2019 by Mimecast, 94% of organizations have experienced phishing attacks over the last 12 months and 88% of respondents also experienced email-based spoofing of business partners and vendors. With numbers like these, there is a good chance your company is under relentless attack. 

What makes email so attractive to cybercriminals is the fact that emails can be sent to the masses in a matter of seconds and it only takes a single person’s mistake for a breach to occur.  In the same survey conducted by Mimecast on display in the report, they detailed that they performed a phishing simulation with a 6,500 employee software company. More than 500 employees opened and clicked on a phishing email link in under 1 second. Fortunately, the Mimecast Email and Security Report 2019 also found that 98% of surveyed companies offer cybersecurity awareness programs to their employees. This is a great step in the right direction, as it shows businesses have become aware of just how vulnerable they are. 

As news of high-profile data breaches continues to reach the public, people are starting to realize that the “it won’t happen to me” mentality is an unrealistic one. Cyberattacks are a real threat, and every day they become more and more sophisticated. As you make your way through October, keep an eye out for suspicious emails and be sure to spread the word to help raise awareness around the issue of cybersecurity.