5 Initiatives to build security culture in organization

Fostering a robust security culture is no longer just a technical issue confined to the IT department; it is a cultural imperative that must permeate every facet of an organization. To build a resilient security culture, organizations need to go beyond meeting minimal standards and focus on creating an environment where security is ingrained in everyday behavior.

Here are five key initiatives that have helped three Australian organizations move from mere compliance to fostering functional, resilient security cultures

1. Identifying Key Cybersecurity Behaviors

The foundation of a strong security culture lies in the identification and reinforcement of key cybersecurity behaviors. Organizations must:

  • Assess and Define Critical Behaviors: Understand the specific actions that contribute to a secure environment, such as strong password practices, recognizing phishing attempts, and adhering to data protection protocols.
  • Behavioral Benchmarking: Measure current behavior levels against industry benchmarks to identify gaps.
  • Continuous Reinforcement: Regularly communicate and reinforce these behaviors through training, reminders, and positive reinforcement.

By focusing on behaviors, employees become active participants in the organization’s security culture, rather than passive recipients of policy mandates.

2. Establishing a ‘Cyber Security Champion’ Network

Creating a network of ‘Cyber Security Champions’ can drive security initiatives across the organization. These champions are typically enthusiastic employees who:

  • Act as Role Models: Demonstrate good cybersecurity practices in their daily work.
  • Spread Awareness: Educate their peers about security policies and procedures.
  • Provide Feedback: Offer insights from their departments to the central security team, facilitating a two-way communication channel.

This peer-driven approach can significantly enhance engagement and adherence to security protocols, making cybersecurity a shared responsibility and moreover strengthening the overall security culture.

3. Developing a Brand for the Cyber Team

A strong, recognizable brand for the cyber team helps in demystifying cybersecurity and additionally making it more approachable for all employees. This involves:

  • Creating a Unique Identity: Develop a logo, tagline, and messaging that resonate with the broader organizational culture.
  • Consistent Communication: Use the brand in all communications, training materials, and awareness campaigns.
  • Building Trust: Position the cyber team as approachable and supportive, rather than authoritarian.

A well-branded cyber team can foster trust and openness, encouraging employees to report incidents and certainly seek guidance without hesitation, thus enhancing the security culture.

4. Building a Cyber Security Hub

A centralized cybersecurity hub serves as a one-stop resource for all security-related information and activities. Key features of a cyber hub include:

  • Resource Library: Provide easy access to policies, guidelines, best practices, and educational materials.
  • Interactive Tools: Incorporate tools like self-assessment quizzes, training modules, and incident reporting forms.
  • Community Engagement: Host forums, Q&A sessions, and live chats to facilitate ongoing dialogue and support.

A cyber hub empowers employees with the knowledge and resources they need to stay informed and vigilant, thereby strengthening the security culture within the organization.

5. Aligning Security Awareness Activities with Internal and External Campaigns

Integrating security awareness with broader internal and external campaigns ensures that cybersecurity messages are consistent and pervasive. Strategies include:

  • Coordinated Campaigns: Align security messages with existing corporate communication campaigns, such as new software rollouts or policy updates.
  • Seasonal Themes: Additionally, tie cybersecurity initiatives to relevant external events, like National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, to leverage broader public awareness.
  • Multi-Channel Communication: Use various platforms – emails, intranet, social media, and posters – to reinforce messages,
  • Arrange Short Movie Cyber Days to “Show-Tell-Do” with your employees. Learn more about SyberNow’s quirky workshop that not just entertains with short movies but also uplifts security culture in a fun, engaging and team-bonding way.

Moreover, by embedding security awareness into the fabric of organizational communication, employees are constantly reminded of its importance in a relevant and relatable context, reinforcing the security culture.


The experiences of these three Australian organizations demonstrate that building a functional security culture requires a strategic and holistic approach. By identifying key behaviors, establishing a champion network, developing a cyber team brand, creating a cybersecurity hub, and aligning awareness activities with broader campaigns, organizations can transcend minimal compliance to cultivate a proactive and resilient security culture.

These initiatives not only protect the organization’s assets but also empower employees to become vigilant guardians of their environment, thereby embedding a strong security culture throughout the organization.

Learn more about security culture from NPSA

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