Cyber Security Behavior

How Does Gamified Security Training Positively Impact Cyber Security Behavior Modelling?

The human element has become one of the main factors for cyber security resilience. As such, security awareness training is standard practice for organizations looking to improve employee security behavior. Over the years, several training methods have appeared, aiming to help employees proactively recognize and respond to cyber threats.

This article will explore the topic of gamification and how this training approach is revolutionizing cyber security behavior modelling.

What is Cyber Security Behavior Modelling?

Cyber Security behavior modeling is a strategic approach to security awareness training (SAT) focusing on impacting individual behavioral changes. It takes data from modern security tools and tracking mechanisms to create customized training that addresses the specific vulnerabilities and requirements of each employee.

Cyber Security behavior modeling follows concepts from B.J. Fogg’s behavior model, which outlines three components influencing behavioral change. These are:

  • Motivation – Answers the “Why?” behind actions. The higher an individual’s motivation, the more positive change in behavior it impacts. 
  • Ability – Addresses the “How?” of behavior change by ensuring individuals have the necessary skills, knowledge, and resources to perform the desired cyber security behaviors. 
  • Nudges – Providing ongoing reminders and reinforcement to encourage positive behavior.

Despite the different training tools available, one challenge many organizations face is their inability to effectively engage their employees and make security training impactful and ingrained in everyday habits.

Gamification as an Important Tool in Behavior Modelling

Gamification is an approach to security awareness training (SAT) that aims to increase engagement through the use of game-like elements and mechanics. This method transforms traditional training content into interactive, competitive, and fun activities, making the learning process more appealing and memorable.

Gamification incorporates elements such as points, badges, leaderboards, challenges, and rewards, tapping into the natural human desires for competition, achievement, and recognition. With its characteristics, gamification touches on all main components in cyber security behavior modeling:

  • Elements of competition motivate employees to engage more actively in security training, which also positively affects their ability to react to real security threats.
  • Gamification is highly customizable – with courses that can be tailored for varying job roles, compliance requirements, and geographical regions.

Studies have shown that gamification can lead to higher engagement and retention rates in learning. For instance, a report by TalentLMS indicated that 83% of those who receive gamified training feel motivated, while 61% of those who receive non-gamified training feel bored and unproductive.

Specific to cyber security, gamified approaches in phishing simulations have shown to be effective. A piece on Infosec nicely puts together the benefits of gamification.

How to Measure the Impact of Gamified Cyber Security Training?

Gamification of training and awareness programs is a relatively new concept that is expected to rise exponentially in upcoming years. But, aside from empirical evidence regarding its growing adoption, are there ways you can measure the positive effects of gamified training within your organization? Here are three approaches to try:

1. Pre and post-training tests

An age-old method for impact analysis, where you test individuals on the same subject before and after they’ve taken the gamified security awareness training. The changes in test performance will be a solid indicator of the effectiveness of the training.

2. Collect data from the gamified learning platform

Most learning platforms will provide you with insightful analytics and dashboards regarding the learners’ actions and interactions during training. You can use these insights to gauge the employee’s progress and identify the strengths and weaknesses of the learning design.

3. Interviews and focus groups

There’s no better source of information than the people who’ve had the actual experience with the gamified training program. Gather a sample of employees who’ve had the training and ask them open-ended questions regarding their experiences, opinions, and feelings. These conversations will surface any difficulties or challenges, as well as positive elements that will likely bring lasting positive changes in behavior.

Elevating Cyber Security Training Experience Through Gamification

Integrating gamification in cyber security education is a significant shift towards more engaging and effective learning methods. By tapping into the natural human tendencies for competition and achievement, gamification enhances the learning experience and promotes better retention and application of cyber security practices.

As cyber threats continue to evolve, adopting such innovative training approaches becomes crucial for organizations aiming to fortify their defenses. Ultimately, the success of these methods will depend on their thoughtful implementation and alignment with the organization’s specific security needs and culture.

Transform Cyber Security Awareness Training into an Interactive Experience

Elevate your workforce’s cyber security education with our diverse range of gamified courses organized by role, compliance, region and industry.

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How does Gamified Training Impact Cyber Security Behavior and Culture?

Let’s face it, no matter how serious cyber threats are nowadays, the average employee will rarely think about them on a daily basis or prioritize cyber security practices without a direct incentive. Gamification introduces an engaging way to keep these important issues top of mind, encouraging proactive behavior through a more relatable and interactive approach.