From blaming to understanding
When a security incident happens – like an employee falling for a phishing email – organizations often focus on finding someone to blame. This blame-centered approach can lead to punishment for employees instead of addressing the real causes of the incident. But this approach can actually make things worse by making employees feel demoralized and less trusting of the organization’s security measures.
A better approach, based on human factors, recognizes that incidents are often caused by bigger problems, not just individual mistakes. By understanding how individual abilities and limitations interact with systems, processes, and the organization’s culture, we can get to the root of security issues.
Identifying the underlying issues
Human factors analysis helps identify the root causes of security incidents by examining individual, team, and organizational dynamics. This includes understanding how human cognition and decision-making processes can lead to errors, the impact of team dynamics such as communication and leadership, and the influence of organizational factors such as policies, procedures, and management practices.
Moving beyond awareness and training to foster a security culture
Instead of just giving people training to raise their awareness, a human factors approach goes deeper. It looks at the culture of the organization and how security is seen and practiced by everyone, from the top to the bottom. By creating a strong security culture, organizations can prioritize security in all daily operations.