University of Twente Student Theses


Creating and Maintaining Organizational Security Awareness in SMEs

Sessink, Danique (2020) Creating and Maintaining Organizational Security Awareness in SMEs.

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Abstract:Usually, employees are the weakest link within an organization when it comes to cyber security. To prevent security-attacks in an organization, each employee should be able to recognize security threats and know how to mitigate them. For that reason, cyber security awareness amongst employees is an important organizational concern. Within the company Cofano, it is hard to create security awareness and consistently maintain it throughout the year. The research in this master thesis aims to design and validate an artifact for Cofano that treats the problem of creating and maintaining security awareness in SMEs with regard to ISO 27001 and with preservation of corporate culture. To achieve this research goal, a design science research methodology was chosen. First, a problem investigation was done through interviewing the problem stakeholders within Cofano. From the conducted interviews, improvement possibilities for Cofano on the area of security awareness could be extracted. Next, an artifact was designed based on literature from a research topics paper combined with the interview results. The artifact, together with explanatory notes, contains what Cofano has to do in order to achieve a higher level of security awareness within the organization. Finally, this artifact was validated by using expert opinions and perceptions. The results indicate that the artifact provides a clear overview of all steps Cofano can undertake to reach a higher level of security awareness. In addition, it contains all steps needed for improvement of security awareness amongst employees. The results of this research aid Cofano in improving the level of security awareness amongst the employees while corporate culture is preserved, and the ISO 27001 standard is respected. Future directions could be implementing the artifact at Cofano and evaluating this implementation. In addition, the application of this research to other, similar companies could be investigated as to determine the usability of the proposed artifact at companies in a similar business sector as that of Cofano.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Cofano Software Solutions B.V., Enschede, the Netherlands
Faculty:EEMCS: Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science
Subject:54 computer science
Programme:Computer Science MSc (60300)
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