We make risks transparent and show how things can be done differently

We are celebrating ten years of MeeMaken. How? By putting one of the thirteen MeeMaken companies in the spotlight each month. This time, we are talking to Ernst Bouwman, former managing director and now responsible for the indirect sales channel at Infosequre, about the key term: Risk. “With our training, companies are less at risk!”

Ernst Bouwman

Infosequre and ‘risk’, is that a good combination?

“If you turn it around, then certainly,’ Ernst begins. ‘Infosequre, in fact, does everything in its power to avoid risk. Our mission is to ensure that our clients can operate with as little risk as possible. To achieve this, we develop online training programs for information security, focusing on digital information security and countering phishing – online deception through, for example, fake emails – as well as secure handling of information on paper. In 1999, we were pioneers in providing these types of online training programs in the field of risk and awareness of information security. With this online approach, companies can easily train all their employees, helping them reduce the risk of incidents. During the COVID pandemic, we also developed special “secure remote work training” to address the digital risks of remote work. We continuously update our products as cyber-attacks are ever-changing and becoming more sophisticated.”

“With our training, companies are less at risk!”

Is there still so much to learn?

“More than you might think. On average, about 20 to 30 percent of people fall for a phishing email,” Ernst explains. “We make sure to bring these numbers down with our positive approach. While security errors are often human errors, we don’t see humans as the weakest link. Instead, we see them as the strongest asset to improve security! That’s why we train people to recognize attacks and, most importantly, to report such fake emails. If they spot a suspicious email, they must report it to their IT management. This way, we can reduce the risk for the entire company: recognize, report, and reduce the risk.

To achieve this, we use a learning method that keeps learning fun. This ensures that the information sticks better. We incorporate games, virtual reality goggles, and even an escape room. The escape room, in particular, is often used during kickoffs. It immediately puts the theme on the agenda and gets employees more involved. This approach significantly reduces risks. Additionally, we demonstrate the ease of hacking with ethical hackers. We may also send fake phishing emails to show those who click on them how they could have recognized them. This way, we make the seriousness of the situation visible and teach users how to do things differently right away.”

Do you avoid more risks by being part of MeeMaken?

“Not necessarily for us, but perhaps for the other MeeMaken companies,” says Ernst. “Infosequre was founded back in 1999. Initially, we only served large companies dealing with digital attacks. Times have changed, as almost everyone nowadays has to deal with phishing on a daily basis, even in their private lives. In 2013, Infosequre was acquired by MeeMaken. Now, we also provide training to other MeeMaken companies to help them avoid risks related to information security. We have heard several times that it works: ‘Thanks to your training, I recognized the fake email; otherwise, it could have turned out very differently!’”

Within MeeMaken, Infosequre closely collaborates with other companies that develop digital learning solutions. “Together with eWorks and Splintt, we form the BeOne Development group. We share overarching aspects like finance, HR, IT, and marketing. This also leads to cost savings, which aligns well with our approach to risk avoidance!”

We've heard several times: ‘Thanks to your training, I recognized the fake email; otherwise, it could have turned out very differently!’

How do you see the risks in the future?

“We don’t really focus on risks. Instead, we prefer to eliminate them. Currently, we are working on increasing the scalability of our products in collaboration with BeOne Development. We already sell our training programs directly and through partners. Our plan is to expand sales through partners – resellers. These partners, who might be selling software, can also promote our product. It may take some time as it’s not their core activity, but if we don’t involve partners now, the competition might do so. That’s a risk we want to avoid. With BeOne Development, we are developing an online library that will present all our products in an organized manner. In this joint effort between Infosequre, eWorks, and Splintt, we can offer our products and propositions. This will lead to cross-selling opportunities and help us reach new customers.

Additionally, we are looking into international growth. It’s a highly interesting and challenging sector, in which we want to keep developing continuously. Our products are being used worldwide. It’s fascinating to observe how our products perform in different regions. Cultural aspects play a significant role in how learning materials are utilized. We are committed to ongoing development, expanding our customer base, and evolving our products accordingly. With the collaboration within BeOne Development and the support from MeeMaken, we are presenting ourselves even better!”