Need Fully Autonomous Phishing?

Schedule Demo
Min To Read

Why the 'You Can't Patch Stupid' Mindset is a Cybersecurity Hazard

Published on
August 2, 2023
Subscribe to our blog alert!
Read about our privacy policy.
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Share On LinkedIn:


In the world of cybersecurity, the saying "You can't patch stupid" is often thrown around dismissively when discussing human errors that lead to successful cyberattacks. This phrase implies that no matter how much effort is invested in improving security measures, some users will make unwise decisions that leave systems vulnerable.

This article aims to debunk this myth and discuss its detrimental effects on cybersecurity efforts. By understanding the true nature of human behavior and the power of education and awareness, we can create a more robust and resilient cybersecurity culture.

The Misguided Assumption

The assumption behind the phrase "You can't patch stupid" is that human errors are unpreventable and that certain individuals will always be susceptible to making mistakes that compromise security. This attitude serves as an excuse to shift the blame onto these individuals, rather than addressing the systemic issues that contribute to security breaches.

By adhering to this misguided belief, organizations may fail to invest in essential employee training and education, instead focusing solely on technological solutions. This can leave employees ill-equipped to recognize and respond to threats, making it easier for cybercriminals to exploit human vulnerabilities.

The Reality of Human Behavior and Cybersecurity

The reality is that human error is not a matter of stupidity, but often a result of manipulation, deception, or lack of awareness. Cybercriminals are experts at exploiting human psychology, and even the most intelligent and well-informed individuals can fall victim to sophisticated attacks.

By understanding the tactics used by cybercriminals and the ways in which human psychology can be manipulated, we can better prepare ourselves and our organizations to defend against these threats. This requires an investment in continuous security education and awareness that goes beyond simple one-time training sessions.

The Power of Education and Awareness

PhishFirewall, a leader in cybersecurity training and awareness, demonstrates the significant impact that continuous security education can have on reducing human error and thwarting phishing attacks. Their innovative noLMS approach, gamified training, and the use of AI cyber coaching have proven to be highly effective in raising awareness and improving security behavior.

By implementing "just in time" education that is delivered through the user's inbox, PhishFirewall has transformed the conventional learning management system (LMS) into a more efficient and engaging platform. This empowers individuals to stay informed about the latest threats and techniques, equipping them with the knowledge and skills needed to protect their organizations.

Creating a Culture of Cybersecurity

To counter the "you can't patch stupid" mindset, organizations must foster a culture of cybersecurity that does not blame the victim but instead focuses on learning and improvement. This involves providing ongoing training and support, as well as encouraging open communication about security incidents and the steps taken to address them.

By avoiding a punitive culture around cybersecurity lapses and focusing on positive reinforcement, organizations can create an environment where employees feel empowered to learn from mistakes and work together to defend against cyber threats. This collaborative approach, combined with the expertise of industry leaders like PhishFirewall can significantly reduce the likelihood of successful attacks and improve overall security.

The Role of Systems and Processes

As we acknowledge the importance of continuous education and awareness in reducing human errors, it is also crucial to recognize the role that systems, processes, and security infrastructure play in mitigating risks. By implementing robust, user-friendly security measures, organizations can minimize the reliance on individual behavior and create an environment where employees feel supported in their efforts to maintain security.

Striking the right balance between human-based and technology-based cybersecurity measures is essential to create comprehensive protection against cyber threats. While no system is entirely foolproof, combining effective security infrastructure with ongoing employee training can significantly reduce the likelihood of successful attacks. This approach not only addresses human vulnerabilities but also recognizes that technology alone cannot provide a complete solution.


In conclusion, the "you can't patch stupid" mindset is a dangerous and detrimental approach to cybersecurity. By perpetuating this myth, organizations risk overlooking the crucial role that education, awareness, and a positive security culture play in protecting against cyber threats. It is important to remember that everyone has a role to play in cybersecurity, and collectively, we can make a significant impact in reducing the risk of successful attacks.

By leveraging the power of education, improved systems, and a positive security culture, organizations can create a more resilient defense against cyber threats. Companies like PhishFirewall, with their innovative noLMS approach, gamified training, and AI cyber coaching, demonstrate the significant impact that continuous learning can have on enhancing security behavior.

As professionals in the field of cybersecurity, it is our responsibility to challenge the "you can't patch stupid" myth when we encounter it in our professional circles. By promoting a more inclusive and supportive approach to security, we can create a stronger, more resilient defense against the ever-evolving landscape of cyber threats.