KnowBe4 is one of the most well-regarded Security Awareness Training (SAT) vendors thanks to their large offering of content, phishing focused report button, and admin capabilities. There are, however, many KnowBe4 alternatives and other SAT solutions on the market. Before you invest in a training course, it is worth considering the strengths and weaknesses of the KnowBe4 alternatives, to find the right solution for you.
With cyberattacks becoming ever more advanced and creative, SAT is having to follow suit. Vendors are looking at new ways to engage users with interactive modules, quizzes, and the concept of “gamification”. This aims to make the training fun and interactive so that the content is easy to digest, and so that users can get used to reacting to malicious emails. Some providers may offer a wider range of content that others, or more content on a specific topic, or in a range of languages.
Ensuring that your solution caries out effective and realistic phishing simulations is another bonus. This will allow admins to monitor who has responded well to the training, and who could do with extra practice. Some solutions will utilize behavioral science to drive real organization-wide change and keep your network safe.
In this guide we’ll consider some of the main KnowBe4 alternatives, highlighting the key features and differences with each option. We will recommend the type of organization who would be best suited to using this solution. The top features that we’ve considered include reporting features, phishing simulations, and engaging training content.
Users like: Easy-to-use platform with high-quality, real-time training.
Users dislike: Can take time to understand its features.
TitanHQ is a leading cybersecurity vendor that specializes in email and web security as well as data archiving. SafeTitan (formerly Cyber Risk Aware but acquired and rebranded by TitanHQ in February 2022) is a behavioral-driven security awareness training platform that provides users with engaging educational content, customizable phishing simulations, and real-time intervention training—with reporting and analytics to enable admins to manage and monitor progress.
With SafeTitan, admins can access an expansive library of courses, video and quiz content to assign engaging, gamified, bite-sized training for users to complete—as well as customize their own content. They can also create, customize, and run powerful phishing campaigns using the platform’s extensive template library. But what really sets SafeTitan apart from other solutions is its powerful real-time intervention training. This works by monitoring and detecting it in real-time when a user exhibits risky behavior. The platform will then send training content related to the specific action they’ve taken. The platform also comes with reporting and analytics tools for admins, providing them with a 360-view of their entire organization and performance.
Organizations interested in trialing SafeTitan can take advantage of a 30-day free trial. For further pricing information we recommend reaching out to TitanHQ.
SafeTitan is best suited for larger enterprises looking for a powerful platform that can both provide assigned training and real-time intervention training, as well as MSPs looking for a strong offering to help SMB clients educate users and manage risk.
Hook Security is an innovative security awareness training provider who help organizations improve security cultures with targeted, engaging training campaigns. Hook provides simulated phishing campaigns, ongoing awareness training with high-quality, funny, and relevant training content, employee risk scoring and analysis that helps organizations to better understand their employees’ and relevant security risks. Hook is delivered as a cloud service.
Hook deliver continuously updated courses and training materials designed to help organizations better understand and decrease their risk of security threats. Hook Security’s PsySec Awareness Training offers engaging content featuring real people, with content focused on humor and repetition. They also offer robust reporting on user behavior and improvements over time, which integrates with your existing SOCs and dashboards.
Hook also delivers advanced phishing simulations with targeted training, analytics, and follow ups to help ensure organizations see real improvements in security behaviors, while meeting compliance requirements. This service is very popular with its users who praise the quality of training materials offered, the simple deployment, ease of admin configuration, and the customization of phishing campaigns.
Expert Insights highly recommends Hook Security’s PsySec as a strong platform for MSPs, SMBs, and enterprises looking for engaging security awareness training to improve security behaviours and meet compliance needs.
ESET is a cybersecurity provider that offers innovative and multi-layered internet security solutions to support the cyber safety efforts of consumers and businesses in over 200 countries and territories. ESET provides context for users that explains why certain behaviors are important, while keeping learners engaged with gamified quizzes, role-playing, and interactive sessions. ESET reinforces this training with unlimited ongoing phishing security tests and refresher courses to keep your employees sharp.
The course covers a wide range of security topics, including threat overviews, password safety, email protection, web protection, and preventive measures. The modules are regularly updated to ensure all advice is current. The user-friendly admin dashboard allows you to monitor training progress, view individual learner status in real-time, and generate custom reports. The solution also provides a comprehensive phishing
simulation platform, with numerous pre-built, customizable email templates. Users can report suspicious emails with a plugin for Microsoft 365, and users who fail simulations can be automatically enrolled on a refresher training course.
As well as protecting against cyberthreats, ESET cybersecurity awareness training helps organizations meet cyber insurance and compliance requirements, including HIPAA, PCI DSS, SOX, NIST, ISO/IEC 27001(2), GDPR, and CCPA. ESET is also Texas DIR certified and was named a Leader in cybersecurity training from Frost & Sullivan Radar.
The ESET dashboard is simple to use, and it’s easy to onboard users and deploy the service, especially for Microsoft 365 users with Azure AD integration. We recommend this solution to organizations of all sizes looking for effective, engaging security awareness training and phishing simulation.
Users like: Strong and effective phishing simulations, engaging training content, and easy to use.
Users dislike: User interface can be cumbersome, and some phishing email templates are dated.
Proofpoint is one of the world’s leading email security providers, specializing in securing businesses and their data against advanced threats and email compromise. Proofpoint Security Awareness Training (developed by Wombat Security Technologies and acquired by Proofpoint in 2018) is a sophisticated security awareness training solution that combines modular training and assessment with phishing simulations and testing, risk scoring, and granular reporting capabilities in a single, easy-to-use platform.
Proofpoint Security Awareness Training is designed to be engaging, educational, and memorable for users, and includes interactive content, videos, games, and more. The solution’s threat simulation capability – ThreatSim – offers USB and SMS-based simulations, in addition to email-based phishing simulations. The platform has a library of more than 700 real-world templates to choose from. Users can then report any suspicious emails using Proofpoint’s PhishAlarm email plugin. Admins can also check user and campaign progress in detail via the admin dashboard, as well as view individual user risk scores via Very Attacked People (VAP) reports.
Proofpoint Security Awareness Training comes in two packages—Standard (which comes with all the key features we’ve discussed) and Enterprise (which adds further integration, support, and multi-language content). These can also be purchased standalone or as part of the Proofpoint Essentials stack for SMBs. Contact Proofpoint directly for full pricing information.
Proofpoint Security Awareness Training is a great alternative to KnowBe4 and is particularly suited for SMBs that are looking for engaging educational content as well as email, USB, and SMS phishing simulations. We’d also strongly recommend the solution to any organization already using the Proofpoint Essentials stack for SMBs.
Users like: User-friendly interface, great training material, powerful phishing simulations, and easy integration with Active Directory.
Users dislike: Setting up phishing campaigns can be cumbersome.
Barracuda is a leading email and network security vendor that specializes in providing enterprise-scale, multi-layered security solutions for organizations globally. Barracuda Security Awareness Training is a powerful awareness training product that offers training content, phishing simulations, and admin reporting capabilities. Security Awareness Training can either be purchased standalone or alongside Barracuda’s powerful Email Protection stack to provide total email protection.
Because the product is part of a wider email security platform, the training offered by Barracuda leverages threat intelligence and real-world phishing examples to educate users on threats they might face. Admins can also create their own customized training program from scratch or make use of the Quick Launch option to set up a campaign in minutes. To test users, admins can send simulated phishing email as well as simulated SMS messages, voicemails, and physical media (USBs and SD cards). Users can report any suspicious emails via the Phish Reporting email plugin. The solution has powerful reporting capabilities—with the platform capturing more than 16,000 data points for analysis—and user risk scoring and benchmarking.
Security Awareness Training can either be purchased as a standalone product or as part of the Barracuda Email Protection bundle. For further pricing information, we recommend reaching out to the Barracuda sales team directly.
Barracuda Security Awareness Training is a great alternative to KnowBe4 for enterprise organizations that are looking for up-to-date and relevant phishing simulations and advanced reporting capabilities.
Users like: User-friendly, feature-rich, and highly customizable platform that comes with a variety of phishing templates based on real-life scenarios.
Users dislike: Simulated phishing emails can be too obvious, and some users struggle to integrate the product with third-party security tools.
Cofense (formerly PhishMe) is an industry leader in phishing protection, detection, and response solutions, specializing in combining AI and human intelligence to protect against social engineering. PhishMe is a phishing simulation and training solution that trains users on how to respond to phishing in a real-life (yet safe) environment. LMS is its computer-based training solution, designed to educate and test users on the wider areas of cybersecurity.
With PhishMe, admins can configure and automate a fully customized 12-month phishing program in just a few minutes using Cofense’s library of 1,500 industry-specific phishing email templates, landing pages, and attachments as well as AI-based recommendations. The solution also comes with Cofense Reporter, an email plugin that enables users to report suspected phishing emails and admins to track campaign success. LMS comes with educational modules on all the key security topics—including social engineering, passwords, data protection, physical security—as well as an interactive smishing (SMS phishing) simulator. And, of course, both products come with extensive, granular reporting capabilities, to enable admins to track user progress and adjust training programs accordingly.
Cofense currently offers a few of its modules free of charge as part of Cofense CBFree. For pricing information for PhishMe and LMS, we recommend reaching out to Cofense directly.
We recommend Cofense PhishMe and LMS for businesses of all that are looking for powerful, up-to-date phishing simulations, and a tool that can integrate with Cofense’s other phishing detection and response products.
Users like: Simple, user-friendly interface, powerful metrics, and a variety of modules.
Users dislike: Modules for more advanced users could be more challenging.
CybSafe is a UK-based security awareness training provider that takes an innovative approach to educating users. Its eponymous security awareness training platform is designed to change user behavior using data-driven metrics and behavioral science. It is designed by cybersecurity specialists, behavioral scientists, and data scientists working in collaboration. The platform offers personalized training modules in addition to phishing simulations and in-depth reporting on user behavior.
What’s great about CybSafe is that its solution is based on machine learning and automation – it processes thousands of data points to personalize training programs ensuring that each user can focus on their own specific needs. Each learning module is designed to be short (6–13 minutes in length), engaging, and customizable, so organizations can tailor content to match their needs. Admins can also easily set up, customize, and launch phishing campaigns in minutes using phishing templates that are based on emotional and behavioral triggers. From the admin dashboard, security teams can track and understand user behavior, measure program success, and access unique data-driven insights.
CybSafe comes in multiple pricing and subscription plans. Contact CybSafe directly for more information.
We recommend CybSafe for SMBs that are looking for an innovative, data-driven solution that educates users and changes behavior via personalized training modules, phishing simulations, and behavioral analytics.
Users like: Wide range of training topics, engaging and memorable content, fully customizable and effective phishing campaigns.
Users dislike: Integration with Active Directory can be difficult, and older training videos can feel dated.
Infosec is a leading security awareness training provider that offers engaging awareness training and phishing simulations, as well as a range of skills training courses and certifications. Infosec IQ is an awareness training and phishing simulation solution that focuses on providing engaging and relevant personalized training to help users stay secure both in the workplace and at home.
The educational training content that comes with Infosec IQ is designed to be fun, engaging, and memorable. Its library contains more than 800 training resources includes interactive modules, bite-sized videos, “choose your own adventure” games, assessments, newsletters. Admins can choose from pre-built training plans or customize their own. Admins can also choose from a library of more than 1,000 phishing email templates and either create custom campaigns or set pre-built campaigns to run automatically. Using the PhishNotify email reporting plugin, users can report suspected phishing emails and admins can track campaign progress. Admins can also track trends, identify risky groups of users, and enroll individuals in further training via the admin dashboard.
Infosec IQ comes in three pricing tiers—standard, Enterprise, and Infosec IQ + Skills—and all tiers include unlimited awareness training and phishing simulations. For further pricing information, reach out to Infosec’s sales team.
Infosec IQ is a fantastic alternative to KnowBe4 awareness training and is suitable for organizations of all sizes that are looking for fun, engaging, and memorable training content alongside powerful phishing simulations.
IRONSCALES is the industry’s fastest growing cloud-based email security company. Their solution is a self-learning, AI-driven email security platform that continuously detects and remediates advanced threats like BEC, ATO, VIP Impersonations, and more, in milliseconds. The platform also empowers employees to fight against phishing with integrated email alert banners, report phishing buttons, personalized phishing simulation testing, and advanced security awareness training (SAT) to augment or consolidate your email security stack.
Their comprehensive phishing simulation and security awareness training approach makes it easy to send and track training videos on a wide range of security-related topics to the people who need them most. Employees benefit from engaging, bite-sized videos that cover current real-world threats and targeted training campaigns, with content that addresses various industry compliance training requirements including GDPR, HIPPA, PCI, PII, and more. Detailed engagement reporting also allows IT teams and admins to track measurable outcomes and easily identify employees who may require additional security awareness training. The IRONSCALES video training library covers various cybersecurity categories with quick and easy-to-consume content in nine different languages, plus the option to upload, track and score your own content.
Overall, IRONSCALES is a strong solution that combines varied security awareness training materials and targeted phishing simulations to improve the security posture of your organization by empowering employees to identify and protect themselves from sophisticated cybersecurity threats. We would recommend IRONSCALES security awareness to organizations who are interested in a single unified solution that educates users on today’s biggest cybersecurity threats and teaches them to recognize what a suspicious email looks like in their usual email environment, and best practices to safely respond.
Users like: Short, engaging, and entertaining training videos that are not only relevant to recent threats, but memorable.
Users dislike: Lack of ability to customize training modules.
NINJIO is a security awareness training provider that’s best known for its award-winning anime-style training videos. NINJIO AWARE is a powerful security awareness training platform that offers a wide range of bite-sized training content—with full access provided to its rich library as well as a new episode released monthly. NINJIO PHISH is a “Phishing-as-a-Service” platform that integrates with NINJIO AWARE to automatically send users relevant and up-to-date simulated exercises as well as enrolling them in refresher training if they fail a simulation.
What’s great about NINJIO AWARE is that it comes in several different styles, so organizations can choose whichever suits their organization best—for example, AWARE ANIME uses American anime-style characters, while AWARE corporate uses a more conservative animation style. Each training video is between 3–4 minutes in length and based on real companies that have suffered the breaches or attacks covered in the story. NINJIO PHISH is a managed service where NINJIO can configure and schedule phishing campaigns on an organization’s behalf—but admins can also customize content if required. Admins can also track user activity and progress over time to gain visibility into organization-wide trends and areas for improvement.
NINJIO currently offers discounts for non-profits and educational organizations. For full pricing information, we recommend reaching out to NINJIO’s sales teams.
NINJIO is a fantastic alternative to KnowBe4 for mid-sized and enterprise organizations that are looking for entertaining, memorable, and compelling security awareness training alongside phishing simulations as a managed service.
Users like: High-quality, up-to-date training content and resources.
Users dislike: Some users experience a learning curve at first.
Established in 1989, SANS Institute is an established cybersecurity training provider that specializes in providing awareness and skills training, courses, and certifications for security professionals globally. Its Security Awareness products are designed and developed by its security experts and include its EndUser Training and Phishing Platform. Combined, these provide a holistic and comprehensive security awareness training education for users.
SANS EndUser Training is designed to provide users at all awareness levels with up-to-date, relevant and engaging awareness training. The platform offers more than 50 modules with content in six unique styles (including animation, host-led videos, interactive games, and illustrations). It is designed so that organizations can select the learning styles that best support their users and their goals. SANS’ Phishing Platform enables admins to schedule phishing campaigns over a 12-month period and offers an extensive phishing email template library that includes pre-made templates in five difficulty levels. From the admin dashboard, admins can track and adjust their programs based on the SANS Security Awareness Maturity Model, as well as benchmark progress, identify risky users, and create C-suite level reports.
For pricing information for SANS’ Security Awareness products, we’d recommend reaching out to their sales team directly.
Overall, SANS Security Awareness is an excellent alternative to KnowBe4. We recommend the solution for mid-sized and enterprise organizations that are looking for high-quality security awareness training that’s highly flexible and suitable for a range of learning styles.
Why Do You Need SAT?
Security Awareness Training is an integral part of your cybersecurity strategy as your human users are often the last line of defense. If a malicious email has slipped past your email gateway and firewall it is probably a very sophisticated attack. If, however, your users have completed SAT, they will know what suspicious features to look for.
Email based attacks are always evolving, looking for new ways to trick users. It may be the case that there is nothing explicitly suspicious with the email – just that it is a little “off”. A user who has completed SAT will understand the significance of this and know not to give it the benefit of the doubt, but to flag it as suspicious instead.
In 2022, IBM calculated that effective employee training reduces the average impact of a data breach by $247,000 USD. This is a significant figure that could have a real impact on your organizations longer term resilience. Rolling out SAT to all users in your organization is important too. There is no reason why multiple users won’t fall victim to the same attack – it is worth giving them the best training you can, to mitigate this risk.
What Is KnowBe4?
KnowBe4 is a security awareness and training (SAT) provider that aims to empower employees to make smarter, safer decisions. The platform currently has over 1300 items in its content library, giving organizations and users a wealth of relevant knowledge. The phishing training content is available in 34 languages, making it a viable solution for multinational organizations operating in multiple territories.
KnowBe4 uses AI to monitor user behavior and the results of phishing tests to create informed training suggestions and improve effectiveness. The content is gamified, which makes it a more enjoyable experience to take part in. The solution is frequently praised by users for its sleek UI, its ease of use, and its large content library.