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In the first episode of the SmarterMSP Podcast, we talked about the cyberthreat landscape trends to watch out for in 2021. In Episode 2 of the SmarterMSP Podcast, we invited Kevin Williams, journalist and author at a variety of publications including SmarterMSP, to speak about one of the biggest threats in the cybersecurity landscape: untrained end users.

Recently, Kevin spoke with several cybersecurity experts about the prevalent threats and risks presented by untrained end users, who lack the education necessary to protect themselves from targeted cyberattacks​. Kevin relayed the information these experts offered, along with his own advice for MSPs on how they can do their part to keep clients from becoming their biggest cybersecurity vulnerability.

Building a multi-layered approach

Realistically, remote working will continue to remain a popular practice with companies and their employees across the globe for the convenience it provides. However, this does mean cybersecurity concerns will continue to arise.

The remote workforce essentially broadens the perimeter of an MSPs managed network and what the remote workforce will interact with while outside the security of the managed network. This creates further opportunity for hackers and other bad actors to attack easily discoverable, naïve end users.

Many of the cybersecurity experts that Kevin spoke with about this topic cited poor password hygiene as one major reason why end users so often fall victim to cyberattacks.

In the podcast, Kevin offered a reminder that many SMBs will look to their MSP for help with strong password practices and shared ways to help end users practice proper password hygiene. Kevin cited a recent study that listed several alarming stats about end users’ carelessness with passwords and hackers taking advantage of those attitudes. These stats include:

    • At least 65 percent of people reuse passwords across multiple sites.
    • Compromised passwords are responsible for 81 percent of hacking breaches.
    • The average person reuses each password 14 times!
    • Nearly half of employees only add a digit or change a character in their password when they’re required to update it.

The experts that Kevin spoke with also advised MSPs to utilize a multi-layered approach to their cybersecurity offering to clients. One of the easiest ways to build a strong defense that can offset the weaknesses that end users present, is an end-user security awareness training service.

What’s next on the SmarterMSP Podcast

In our next episode, our hosts Sophie Robinson and Ken Bartlett will be joined by Nate Freedman, CEO of Tech Pro Marketing, to discuss how an MSP’s website might be hurting their sales efforts.

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Posted by Bill Petherbridge

Bill is a Content Marketing Associate at Barracuda MSP. In this position, Bill is a key contributor to the management of the SmarterMSP.com and Barracuda MSP blogs. He also serves as copyeditor for Barracuda MSP content, in addition to maintaining Barracuda MSP's social media presence.

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