The Best Cyber Security Training and Resources for 2024

Cyber attacks can be harmful to any organization, but for charities that rely heavily on the trust and goodwill of supporters, they can be devastating. Alongside potential data loss, cyber attacks can lead to financial costs, damage to reputation, and even fines or sanctions.

The Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2024 found that around a third of charities experienced some form of cyber security breach or attack in the past 12 months. The most common breaches were phishing (83% of charities), impersonating an organization in emails or online (37%), and viruses or other malware (14%).

In these times of economic crisis, cyber security is more important than ever. With continuous tech developments, charities must stay updated on the latest threats and how to protect themselves. Investing in cyber security training for staff and volunteers is crucial. Here are some of the best courses and resources available to help your organization practice robust cyber security in 2024.

National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC)

The NCSC offers several options to enhance your cyber security. Their free online training course, “Cyber Security for Small Organisations,” helps organizations understand cyber security and teaches them how to stay safe online. The course covers five key topics: backing up data, protecting against malware, creating strong passwords, keeping devices secure, and defending against phishing.

The best cyber security training and resources

NCSC also provides a free e-learning training package, “Staying Safe Online: Top Tips for Staff,” tailored for small to medium enterprises (SMEs) and charities. This training, which takes less than 30 minutes, equips staff with basic cyber security knowledge and actionable steps to enhance security. It’s designed for beginners and can be used on the NCSC website or integrated into your organization’s training platform.

Additional resources from NCSC include three free cyber security tools: Web Check (to check your website for vulnerabilities), Mail Check (to assess your email server configuration’s security), and Early Warning (to flag suspicious network activity). The Cyber Security: Small Charity Guide also offers valuable information on improving cyber security quickly and at a low cost.

For a more robust cyber security framework, consider obtaining government-backed certifications like Cyber Essentials and Cyber Essentials Plus. The Cyber Advisor scheme provides cost-effective and reliable cyber security advice for SMEs.

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Smartdesc offers Cyber Security Training and Data Protection e-Learning specifically designed for charities. The training covers three core modules: information security, data protection, and fraud awareness. The content is suitable for all IT skill levels and can be customized to include additional content. It’s updated annually to align with the latest regulations. Prices start at £3 per month, per user with no setup fee.

VSL Learning

VSL Learning’s information and cyber security awareness training is ideal for staff, trustees, and volunteers. This 60-minute self-paced course helps identify online threats and provides practical steps to protect your charity. The content aligns with NCSC’s best practices. VSL offers a free demo, with prices starting at £12 per person, and discounts for additional training bookings, such as GDPR or safeguarding training.

Additional Resources

For more free information to improve your charity’s cyber security, visit our Cyber Security Hub. We provide tools and resources to understand threats and prevent attacks. The Charity Digital Exchange offers many discounted software options to help protect your charity.

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