The Cyber Escape Room: The Ultimate Security Training Tactic for 2021

Every year you’re looking for new ways to engage your team in cybersecurity training— and 2021 is no exception. In fact, it’s probably a bit more challenging than usual...

With the COVID-19 pandemic forcing businesses of all industries to continue work from home policies, Security Awareness Program Owners (SAPOs) have to get creative with this year’s initiative. 

Gone are the days of helicopter managers looming behind employee’ desks to ensure they’re completing their security training. It’s more important than ever to empower your team with interesting training modules that actually engage, so they’ll want to champion your security.

Luckily, there’s an answer— and it’s a little something called experiential learning. In this post, we’ll introduce you to this ground-breaking concept and talk about one of its newest, most effective examples: cyber escape rooms.

The Growing Popularity of Experiential Learning

While there’s a long list of tactics SAPOs use to boost engagement in cybersecurity awareness programs, one in particular has been growing in popularity over recent years: experiential learning

Experiential learning gets your team involved by doing, or inspiring them to participate in interactive games or exercises intended to give them hands-on experience. It’s like the difference between learning about how to grow bacteria in your college science class versus taking a lab and actually growing bacteria. 

Experiential learning in cybersecurity is about not only teaching your team how to maintain better security, but also showing them how they can help with real life application. It’s about simulating real cyber attacks and engaging your team in group problem-solving— where they can work with other employees to become champions of your security together.

While there are a few ways you can get your team participating in educational activities, our clients have had tremendous success with virtual cybersecurity escape rooms.

What Exactly is a Cyber Escape Room?

You’ve likely heard of the literal “escape room,” right? A team of people willingly have themselves “locked” into a room with a bunch of puzzles. Each time the group solves one, they get another step closer to escape. Let’s not forget it’s all timed, so collaboration is critical for solving all the riddles before the clock runs out. 

Most companies send employees here as a team building exercise, aimed at foster collaboration and making friendly connections with coworkers. This same approach has been repurposed for cybersecurity training, wherein different departments within your organization come together to play out a cyber threat scenario.

Companies like us at Living Security bring the escape room to your company by developing and shipping out puzzles for your team to solve in a conference room-style “entrapment.” Not only will you receive a storyline and instructions for leading the game, but we’ll package and ship real locking mechanisms, devices and tools to give your team a true hands-on experience.

Taking it One Step Further: Fully Online Cyber Escape Rooms

Unsurprisingly with the COVID-19 pandemic, more and more companies are operating remotely. As a result, the in-person escape room isn’t always a feasible option. 

That’s why many companies are using “cyber escape rooms,” or video simulations of traditional escape rooms, to engage their employees virtually. These are escape room scenarios led by a virtual proctor, who can share a screen on a video conferencing platform and walk employees through fun storylines all over a webcam.

HubSpot Video

While your team isn’t trapped in a room with four walls, your employees are trapped on a video call all the same. All individuals are expected to participate and collaborate to unlock virtual doors, getting the team one step closer to freedom. 

Companies like ours at Living Security invest insane hours of design into creating realistic stories and developing interactive resources to make our online escape rooms interesting and relevant to your specific security initiative. From our SecureIT! foundational escape room for first-timers to our Gone Phishing plot centered around social engineering, there are numerous focuses to align with your various security awareness initiatives. 

Escape Rooms Are Just One of a Growing List of Security Awareness Trends...

Both online or in office, cyber escape rooms are proving to be a science-backed, FUN way to not get your team interested in your security. They take it a step beyond engagement— instilling long-lasting behavioral changes that stick long after the training program is completed.

Learn more about our virtual escape rooms here and why big companies like Mastercard are thrilled to use them.

While cyber escape rooms are admittedly our favorite, they’re just one trend of seven for security training in 2021. Download 7 Essential Trends Of Human Risk Management for 2021 to discover the others!

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