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Mitigating Cyber-Human Risks through Cyber Ergonomics

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As a society, we are likely experiencing the largest technological expansion in human history. The evolving digital transformation comes with the crucial responsibility of safeguarding the well-being and security of individuals in the digital realm.

We stand at a pivotal juncture where adapting to the new digital world while prioritizing the health and safety of users is of paramount importance. This concept is encapsulated in what we call “cyber ergonomics,” a holistic approach that blends the benefits of technology with the basic principles of safety, productivity, and comfort.

The lines between work and personal life have become increasingly blurred. With the fast proliferation of technology, remote work, and the constant need to stay connected, the risk of burnout and negative well-being is increasing. We are living in an era of saturation of information. Nowadays people are facing a constant distraction which tends to be overwhelming. Information overload contributes to cognitive fatigue and negatively impacts people’s mental and physical well-being. This is a human risk, and human risk itself is the most important cyber risk!

Incorporating the following cyber ergonomics practices can contribute to improved well-being, reduced burnout, and consequently mitigating risks related to cybersecurity and privacy:

  • Optimizing Digital Workspaces: Like physical ergonomics which optimizes the physical workspace for employee health and comfort, cyber ergonomics ensures that digital workspaces are designed to minimize stress and fatigue, contributing to a reduction in burnout, negative well-being, and broader cyber risks.
  • Encouraging Mindful Tech Use: Organizations should promote mindfulness in technology use. This means setting clear boundaries for digital engagement, encouraging regular breaks, and promoting “digital detox”.
  • Enhancing Collaboration and Communication: Effective communication is a key aspect of cyber ergonomics. It encourages the use of technology for efficient, productive, and less intrusive interactions. Proper use of collaboration tools can help reduce information overload and facilitate communication.
  • Ensuring Digital Accessibility: Ensuring that digital services and platforms are accessible to all, including people with disabilities, to create an inclusive digital environment.
  • Conducting Trainings: Providing training and guidance on proper digital hygiene to employees to enhance their digital well-being. Training not only on cybersecurity awareness but also on healthy tech habits, stress management and self-care, can be invaluable in mitigating human risk.
  • Monitoring and Evaluation: Continuously assessing the impact of digital transformation on both employee well-being and cybersecurity to make necessary adjustments.

All in all, we must protect our mental and physical well-being from the strains of the digital world, just like we protect our computers. Embracing digital transformation with cyber ergonomics involves taking a holistic approach “by design” and “by default” to digitalization. It prioritizes the health, safety, and comfort of individuals while harnessing the benefits of technology to drive innovation and efficiency in today’s digitally driven world.

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