National Cybersecurity Awareness Month
National Cybersecurity Awareness Month (NCSAM) is an initiative by the US Department of Homeland Security to promote the importance of cybersecurity. Established in 2004, National Cybersecurity Awareness Month was started jointly by DHS’s National Cyber Security Division and the non-profit National Cyber Security Alliance. This initiative promotes awareness of how important it is for US individuals and organizations to take proactive steps to enhance cybersecurity. National Cybersecurity Awareness Month is observed in October.
The month-long effort by the Department of Homeland Security continues to raise awareness of the severe threats posed by hackers and cyberterrorists. Teaching everyone to stay safe and secure online helps mitigate digital threats that continue to cause financial and other damages to businesses and individuals.
Initially, National Cybersecurity Awareness Month focused on providing user advice like keeping antivirus programs up to date. In 2009, annual themes were established, and in 2011, weekly themes were introduced. For example, the October 2021 themes are:
- Week #1 : Be Cyber Smart.
- Week #2 : Fight the Phish.
- Week #3 : Explore. Experience. Share. (Week #3 is also known as Cybersecurity Awareness Week.
- Week #4 : Future of Connected Devices.
National cybersecurity awareness outlines the importance of cybersecurity and teaches people about protecting their part while stressing personal accountability. Empowering people to make their online experience safer and more secure and teaching organizations to enforce security is a proven way to reduce the damage of cyberattacks.
The National Cybersecurity Alliance Helps You Stay Safe Online
Whether you work in IT professionally or are simply a passionate, connected device user, it’s always worth being mindful of cybersecurity. Understanding your role in protecting your network is possible by participating in Cybersecurity Awareness Month. Cybersecurity Awareness Month is an ideal time for individuals and organizations to refresh themselves on how to handle the nearly constant threats faced by connected devices. By participating in the learning tracks, participants can improve their awareness and response to cyberattacks.
Why Is This Month Long Awareness Campaign Crucial?
Cybercrime continues to thrive, and experts estimate that the costs associated with these activities will skyrocket to $6 trillion annually this year. Only with continued study and practice can public and private institutions protect their data and critical systems infrastructure.
Much of the success experienced by hackers and cybercriminals comes from catching victims off-guard. Unfortunately, those networks and devices which lack the proper safeguards fall prey to constant probing and attacks. Taking the time to understand how to prevent those intrusions will toughen up all systems to withstand the attacks. October’s National Cybersecurity Awareness Month is an excellent opportunity to increase awareness and improve cybersecurity skills.
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