A Growing Concern About Young Employees’ Views on Cyber Security Impact

New Zealand Computing Solutions
3 min readOct 16, 2023

Are you aware that there is a growing concern that some young employees believe that their actions don’t carry much weight in their company’s cyber security?

Study shows that Millennials and Gen Z employees are more likely to have unsecured cyber security habits compared to older generations.

Do they?

Imagine a scenario where a young employee uses their work passwords for personal websites. This raises security concerns by mixing professional and personal online activities, potentially putting sensitive data at risk.

Another situation is where a young employee, feeling confident in their ability to spot phishing emails, ignores warning signs and clicks on a suspicious link in an email. Unfortunately, this action introduces malware into the company’s network.

These are real scenarios that highlight the importance of cybersecurity awareness and the potential consequences of overlooking it. Among young employees, there are various beliefs and attitudes can influence their cybersecurity behaviours. Some of the common perceptions include:

Lack of Awareness

Some younger employees might not fully grasp the potential consequences of their actions in terms of cybersecurity. The innocuous click on a suspicious link or the use of weak passwords can have far-reaching implications.

Overconfidence

Some younger employees may feel overly confident in their technological know-how, underestimating the sophistication of cyber threats. This overconfidence can lead to risky behaviours.

Disconnect Between Personal and Professional Habits

Young employees frequently use technology for personal purposes, but they may not apply the same security practices at work. They might hold different security expectations in a corporate environment.

Limited Cybersecurity Training

Without comprehensive cybersecurity training, young employees may be left in the dark regarding the potential consequences of their actions. Ignorance and carelessness can result from this lack of education.

(Also See: The Importance of Staff Training in Building a Cyber-Resilient Workforce)

Perception of IT Responsibility

Some young employees may believe that cybersecurity is primarily the responsibility of the IT department and that it’s not their concern. This perception can lead to a lack of ownership and responsibility for their actions.

However, it’s inspiring to see the evolving attitudes and perceptions of young employees who are increasingly becoming vital contributors to organizational security. While there might be room for improvement in their understanding of the significance of their actions, the good news is that change is in the air.

How Can We Prepare?

To harness this positive energy and reinforce the cybersecurity commitment among young employees, organisations should take several empowering steps:

Comprehensive Training

Offer engaging and informative cybersecurity training programs for all employees, including younger team members. Equip them with the knowledge and skills they need to be effective protectors of digital assets.

Cultivate Awareness

Foster a culture of awareness and shared responsibility for cybersecurity. Encourage every team member to recognize their essential role in maintaining a secure digital environment.

Teach and Inspire

Inspire employees with the best practices for upholding security, both in the workplace and in their personal lives. Encourage them to be ambassadors of safe online behaviour.

Empower a Collaborative Mindset

Stress that cybersecurity is a team effort. The commitment of each individual directly contributes to the collective resilience against evolving cyber threats.

The core message is that, in reality, the actions of every employee, regardless of age, are crucial for maintaining strong cybersecurity. Everyone’s behaviour plays a part in either enhancing or weakening the company’s digital defences, and it’s essential to ensure that all employees understand this and act responsibly to protect the organization’s digital assets.

If you want to take proactive steps to protect your company’s infrastructure, reach out to us. Our team of qualified experts is ready to empower your staff with the knowledge and skills they need to safeguard your infrastructure.

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New Zealand Computing Solutions

Expert Small to Medium Business Computer Consulting, IT Outsourcing, Software Development and Managed IT Services. https://nzcs.co.nz/