KnowBe4 Customers Act On Security Awareness Wakeup Call

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Security Awareness Training company sees explosive growth in popularity as it leads the pack as an effective anti-phishing solution

KnowBe4 Security Awareness Training Grows

KnowBe4 experiences explosive growth

Financial institutions are especially likely to be targeted, such as the latest Dyre Wolf campaign that recently stole more than $1 million at a time using a combination of social engineering and malware - Stu Sjouwerman, CEO KnowBe4

2014 was the Year of the Data Breach. A whopping 91% of these data breaches (Target, Home Depot, Sony) was caused by spear-phishing attacks. The need for really effective employee security awareness training is more urgent than ever and KnowBe4’s customers are making security awareness training a high priority.

KnowBe4 has seen explosive triple digit growth for the past 4 years and Q1 2015 was 354 percent over Q1 2014, With over 1,200 enterprise accounts using it to train their employees against phishing and social engineering, KnowBe4 is now the world’s most popular integrated Security Awareness Training and Simulated Phishing platform, adding well over 100 enterprise accounts per month.

“Financial institutions are especially likely to be targeted, such as the latest Dyre Wolf campaign that recently stole more than $1 million at a time using a combination of social engineering and malware,” said KnowBe4 CEO Stu Sjouwerman. “We have also seen a proliferation of dangerous ransomware in recent months and furious innovation by sophisticated cyber criminals. This puts employees in the position of inadvertently giving away the keys to the kingdom. It is more critical than ever to help users understand the consequences of their actions and learn how to combat cybercrime attacks.”

IT managers know users are the weakest link in IT security with phishing and spear-phishing the foremost of these threats. 2015 has already seen one of the biggest healthcare breaches on record and the rest of the year promises to be just as noteworthy, demonstrating how dangerous social engineering can be. IT managers, CISOs and CIOs are scrambling to get in front of the next wave.

According to a new study from Osterman Research, 5 out of 6 of the most serious concerns of security-focused decision makers are directly related to phishing or its aftermath. The study suggests companies implement a variety of best practices to address the security gaps that have been identified. The study stated: “It is important to invest sufficiently in employee training so that the “human “firewall” can provide the best possible initial line of defense against increasingly sophisticated phishing and other social engineering attacks.”

Sjouwerman noted, “When ransomware evolved in 2014, many companies were caught unaware and found their backups often failed. This underlined the need for action. Since we are the only company to offer a “crypto-ransom guarantee” (we cover the ransom in Bitcoin if our customer gets hit with ransomware after training their users), we moved up on the priority list. IT and risk managers know It is far cheaper to train users than pay the fines and heavy costs associated with a data breach.”

KnowBe4 has seen its largest growth in the financial sector. That industry is moving away from the compliance-focused annual “breakroom” approach to a more effective behavioral-based approach, using Kevin Mitnick Security Awareness Training. It teaches users how to recognize threats with a combination of training and simulated phishing attacks and has been quite successful, seeing the average phish-prone percentage of employees drop radically. KnowBe4 also offers unique features to test users randomly with varied templates, avoiding the “prairie dog” effect with users warning each other.

For more information or to get a free phishing test to see how “phish-prone” your employees are, visit

About Stu Sjouwerman and KnowBe4
Stu Sjouwerman (pronounced “shower-man”) is the founder and CEO of KnowBe4, LLC, which provides web-based Security Awareness Training (employee security education and behavior management) to small and medium-sized enterprises. A data security expert with more than 30 years in the IT industry, Sjouwerman was the co-founder of Inc. 500 company Sunbelt Software, an award-winning anti-malware software company that he and his partner sold to GFI Software in 2010. Realizing that the human element of security was being seriously neglected, Sjouwerman decided to help entrepreneurs tackle cybercrime tactics through advanced security awareness training. KnowBe4 services hundreds of customers in a variety of industries, including highly-regulated fields such as healthcare, finance and insurance and is experiencing explosive growth with a surge of 427% in 2013 alone. Sjouwerman is the author of four books, with his latest being Cyberheist: The Biggest Financial Threat Facing American Businesses.

About Kevin Mitnick
Kevin Mitnick is an internationally recognized computer security expert with extensive experience in exposing the vulnerabilities of complex operating systems and telecommunications devices. He gained notoriety as a highly skilled hacker who penetrated some of the most resilient computer systems ever developed. Today, Mitnick is renowned as an information security consultant and speaker, and has authored three books, including The New York Times best seller Ghost in the Wires. His latest endeavor is a collaboration with KnowBe4, LLC.

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Kathy Wattman
KnowBe4, LLC
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