Celebrate October National Cybersecurity Awareness Month
October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month. It provides a framework for companies, individuals, and organizations to examine past and current cyber threats to reduce their risks.
October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month. Started by the Department of Homeland Security, it provides a framework for companies, individuals, and organizations to examine past and current cyber threats and audit their devices, networks, and data to reduce the risk of a data breach.
This is a great time to talk to your staff about the importance of cybersecurity in protecting the company, and, ultimately, their livelihood. Events and training are great ways to raise awareness and garner support for security and prevention initiatives.
Why Is NCSAM More Relevant than Ever?
The following considerations make it more important than ever to raise awareness and prevent bad actors from walking away with your sensitive data:
- Ransomware damage could rise to $11.5 billion in 2019 and criminals will conduct ransomware attacks every 14 seconds.
- Malware and advanced intrusion devices let attackers remotely control compromised computers. These botnets sometimes begin a campaign of proxy and spam attacks and other organized criminal activity.
- Cybercriminals use online resources to steal intellectual property and identities.
- Sexual predators stalk their victims on social media.
- Dark websites provide illegal goods and services on networks that mask IP addresses and leave a cold trail for investigators.
The FBI and federal, state, and local authorities work with industry experts to encourage people to take cybersecurity seriously. These efforts include:
- Investigating hacks and attempted hacks
- Disrupting cybersecurity threats
- Collecting and analyzing intelligence
- Warning the public about known or suspected cyber threats
Use October’s NSCAM designation to reach out to your corporate users and anybody connecting to your system. For example, you can remind everyone of the company’s policies and procedures regarding email usage, remote sign-on and password protection.
How Is the Government Supporting These Goals?
The FBI-led National Cyber Joint Investigative Task Force provides a way for businesses and individuals to report and anticipate threats. Private and public initiatives help prevent the spread of malware and ransomware.
You can also turn to InfraGard—a place where participants share information and coordinate efforts with partners in the private sector. InfraGard has the following goals:
- Train members to find and reduce vulnerabilities
- Develop detailed response systems to track attacks
- Enact best practices to prevent successful attacks
The FBI’s Safe Online Surfing website teaches young students about online security to protect them from predators. Children are most vulnerable to malware, cyberbullies, and other hazards on the internet. Unfortunately, if employees access your network on a compromised devise, it may also pose a threat to your systems.
What Are Event Ideas for Cyber Month?
One of the easiest ways to increase awareness is through cybersecurity awareness tips that can be emailed to employees and posted in shared areas.
As part of National Cyber Security Awareness Month, you can educate employees with email tips to keep them vigilant. Recommended tip topics include:
- How Two-Factor Authentication Works
- Threats Associated with the Internet of Things (IoT) Devices
- Everyday usage guidelines including emails and web browsing habits.
- Social Media Threats Regarding Personal Data