National Cyber Security Awareness Month

National Cyber Security Awareness Month

Reprinted from:

Note: This blog is co-authored by Jerome Nash, Information Technology Specialist at SBA

“Cybersecurity is a shared responsibility”

With the rapid and amazing development of computer and communications technology, the Web has become the main stage where most of the world’s events seem to take place … and computers rule. From seemingly pedestrian activities such as online games, to fulfilling basic tasks such as shopping, to the more enhanced Department of Defense guiding a drone to launch an attack, cyberspace is where everything happens and thus the most vulnerable element in our daily lives.

Some pundits have “prophesized” that the next big war will be waged in cyberspace. In fact, they may be late, as there is a huge “war” going on right now with rogue individuals and countries trying to get access to our most vital information, be it through the so-called personal identity theft, to digging out our closest guarded military secrets with the intention of harming our national security.

As the Department of Homeland Security has stated, “The Internet is part of everyone’s life, every day. We use the Internet at work, home, for enjoyment, and to connect with those close to us. However, being constantly connected brings increased risk of theft, fraud, and abuse. No country, industry, community, or individual is immune to cyber risks. As a nation, we face constant cyber threats against our critical infrastructure and economy. … cybersecurity is one of our country’s most important national security priorities, and we each have a role to play—cybersecurity is a shared responsibility.”

October is the eleventh anniversary of National Cyber Security Awareness Month, sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security, in cooperation with the National Cyber Security Alliance and the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center. (Click here for more information

Through a series of events and initiatives across the country, organizers engage public and private sector partners to raise awareness and educate Americans about cyber security.

This 11th anniversary, the initiative looks ahead to the cyber security challenges for the next ten years, dedicating each week of the month to a different cyber security issue:

Week Two: October 6-10. Secure Development of IT Products.  Building security into information technology products is key to enhancing cybersecurity.

Week Three: October 13-17. Critical Infrastructure and the Internet of Things.  Looking at the importance of protecting critical infrastructure and properly securing all devices, including household items that are connected to the Internet.

Week Four: October 20-24. Cybersecurity for Small and Medium-Sized Businesses and Entrepreneurs. Showcasing what emerging and established businesses can do to protect their organization, customers, and employees.

Week Five: October 27-31. Cyber Crime and Law Enforcement.  Working with law enforcement to combat cyber-crime and educate the public on how to protect themselves from online crime.

In addition, the SBA is offering a free online course to help small business owners protect their business information online. Cyber Security for Small Businesses will help businesses to learn how to avoid breaches in data, measure their vulnerabilities, and what best practices to use to protect their business and your customer information.