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National Cyber Security Awareness Month - Week 1

Posted by Craig Pollack on Oct 3, 2017 10:00:00 AM

Our Shared Responsibility - National Cyber Security Awareness Month

Celebrated every October, National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM) was created as a collaborative effort between government and industry to ensure that all Americans have the information they need to stay safer and more secure online. 

2017 marks the 14th annual NCSAM, co-founded and co-led by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA), the nation’s leading nonprofit, public-private partnership focused on cybersecurity education and awareness.

This week we're going to take a look at some of the basics...

NCSAM’s annual overarching theme is “Our Shared Responsibility.” Because no individual, business or government entity is solely responsible for securing the internet, and everyone must play a role in protecting their part of cyberspace, including the devices and networks they use.

STOP. THINK. CONNECT.™

Underpinning NCSAM is STOP. THINK. CONNECT.™, the global online safety education and awareness campaign co-founded by NCSA and the Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG), and supported by DHS’ federal engagement.

Simple Steps to Online Safety

Staying safe and secure online is our shared responsibility. It's critical for anyone using the internet to continually learn about and consistently practice good cybersecurity habits. To better protect yourself, you should secure your home networks and mobile devices and take time to learn how to use the internet more safely, securely and responsibly.

Some of the top consumer cyber concerns include identity theft, ransomware and the Internet of Things.  Here are some simple steps to protect against these concerns:

Lock down your login: Your usernames and passwords are not enough to protect key accounts like email, banking and social media. Strengthen online accounts and use strong authentication tools – like biometrics, security keys or a unique, one-time code through an app on your mobile device – whenever offered. Read more.

Back it up: Protect your valuable work, music, photos and other digital information by making an electronic copy and storing it safely. If you have a copy of your data and your device falls victim to ransomware or other cyber threats, you will be able to restore the data from a backup.

Personal information is like money. Value it. Protect it.: Information about you, such as purchase history or location, has value – just like money. Be thoughtful about who gets that information and how it is collected by apps, websites and all connected devices.

Keep a clean machine: Keep all software on internet-connected devices – including personal computers, smartphones and tablets – current to reduce risk of infection from ransomware and malware.

Own your online presence: Set the privacy and security settings on websites to your comfort level for information sharing. It is OK to limit how and with whom you share information.

When in doubt, throw it out: Links in email, tweets, posts and online advertising are often how cybercriminals try to compromise your information. If it looks suspicious, even if you know the source, it’s best to delete or, if appropriate, mark it as junk.

Share with care: Think before posting about yourself and others online. Consider what a post reveals, who might see it and how it might affect you or others.

For more detailed information, here's a sheet from stopthinkconect.org with Basic Tips and Advice.  In addition, here are some of our more recent cyber security related blog posts.

Here's to a safe and secure National Cyber Security Awareness Month!

Hopefully this info's been helpful. Let us know in the Comment box below or shoot me an email if you’d like to chat about this in more detail.

Topics: Cyber Security

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