Prioritizing GenAI Employee Training is Your Best Security Investment – InformationWeek

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As the CEO of an AI security startup, I see the transformative effects generative AI (GenAI) can have in companies. While GenAI presents unmatched opportunities for innovation, its integration into our digital workflows also presents novel and highly complex security challenges. While we can use AI to safeguard AI, the most critical point of failure is the humans who work with it without understanding its power and attendant risks. It’s kind of like giving your 13-year-old the keys to the family Lamborghini: The probability is that things could go spectacularly wrong very quickly.  

Understanding the Human Factor in AI Security 

The rapid adoption of GenAI tools in businesses is a testament to their potential to enhance efficiency and creativity. However, organizations that deploy the tools without also requiring comprehensive, ongoing, role-appropriate employee education about the tools and technology multiply their risk exposure, particularly in a world where everyone is leveraging/utilizing AI agents. For example, any information sent to a GenAI model could potentially be accessed by others using the same model. Depending on the information shared — for instance, medical records, home addresses, Social Security Numbers — this isn’t just a security concern, but a privacy issue with ramifications that could include legal and regulatory action, loss of customer and stakeholder confidence, and reputational damage.  

Related:Will Generative AI Replace Developers?

Incorporating Robust Training as a Core Element of Security

Here’s why continuous learning should be at the heart of your security strategy: 

  • Proactive risk management: Well-informed employees who understand that, for example, sharing proprietary data with GenAI tools or integrating unchecked code provided by a GenAI tool can lead to breaches is fundamental to building a formidable and stable security program. 

  • Adaptability to new threats: GenAI technologies evolve swiftly and, since no good deed goes unpunished, threat actors get working on breaking them just as fast as developers start using them. Regular and regularly updated training ensures your team keeps pace, particularly with the rise of fine-tuned offensive models like Worm GPT.  

Creating Effective GenAI Security Education Programs 

To get employees engaged and keep them engaged, it helps to develop a program with a tailored approach that supports diverse learning styles. We encourage adoption of a blended learning strategy that includes live or on-camera workshops, interactive online courses, “games,” and frequent small-bite refreshers. 

Related:In the Era of Generative AI, Establish a ‘Risk Mindset’

Key areas to focus on include: 

  • The technical skills needed to safely leverage GenAI tools in operational workflows. 

  • Security practices, especially those concerning data integrity and confidentiality. 

Measuring the Impact and Adjusting Strategies 

The effectiveness of any training program can be measured by its outcomes, which should include not just compliance with security protocols, but how confidently employees handle GenAI tools. Regular feedback and audits can help refine these educational initiatives, ensuring they remain relevant and impactful. 
Investing in employee education isn’t just a security measure, it’s a strategic investment in your company’s future because a well-trained team is your best defense against threat actors. Commit to making continuous learning a cornerstone of your security strategy.  

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