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Security Awareness: 5 Traits to Become a Human Firewall

By Mike Kober on Aug 16, 2022 4:29:05 PM

Tags: Cybersecurity

The security of your organization depends upon you, the human firewall. You help prevent security events and control the input and output of sensitive information by exhibiting these five traits.  

Trait 1: Thinking before clicking  

  • A human firewall reads emails carefully, hovers over links to display the full URL, and treats all requests for sensitive data with skepticism. 

Trait 2: Using situational awareness 

  • If you see an unfamiliar person in an area normally reserved for authorized personnel, or notice a secured door left open, don’t ignore it! Maintain a clean desk so as not to lose sensitive materials and shred those materials when no longer needed. When traveling or working remotely, keep an eye on your personal belongings, stay alert for shoulder surfers, and use discretion when accessing or discussing highly sensitive information in public. 

Trait 3: Respecting privileged access 

  • It means closing and locking doors, preventing tailgating (when someone slips in behind you without you knowing), never allowing someone to borrow your credentials, locking workstations when not in use, and maintaining strong, unique passwords for every account and every device. 

Trait 4: Reporting Incidents immediately  

  • It doesn’t matter how big or small the incident seems. A secure door left open, an unknown individual hanging around the office, a phishing email, a smart device or computer malfunctioning — your organization relies on strong human firewalls like you, to report these types of incidents as soon as possible. If you see something or hear something, say something! 

Trait 5: Always following policy  

  • Failure to follow policy could lead to data breaches, ransomware attacks, or other damaging security incidents. 


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