October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month! #CyberAware

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Now in its 15th year, National Cybersecurity Awareness Month is a collaborative effort before government, nonprofit and industry to ensure that all Americans have the information they need to stay safe and more secure online.  The initiative is co-led by the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

The hashtag is #CyberAware.

More than 1,000 organizations participated in the campaign last year and that number is set to grow larger in 2018 and beyond.  The daily news cycle surrounding cybersecurity events continues to grow.  Just last week, Facebook was the latest company to announce that as many as 50 million of its users were victims of a cyber attack.

The overall theme for National Cybersecurity Awareness Month is “Our Shared Responsibility” as it has been in the past.  In 2017, more than half of U.S. adults online were victims of cybercrime.  More than half!  Global statistics state that $172 billion was stolen from 978 million consumers in 20 countries last year.  Those are staggering statistics that may get worse before they get better.

This year, as in years past, the month is broken down into informative and actionable themes.  This years themes are as follows:

October 1-5: Make Your Home a Haven for Online Safety.

October 8-12: Millions of Rewarding Jobs: Educating for a Career in Cubersecurity.

October 15-19: It’s Everyone’s Job to Ensure Online Safety at Work.

October 22-26: Safeguarding the Nation’s Critical Infrastructure.

Check back daily throughout this month, for new posts on these themes.

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As we are now in Week 1, the theme this week is Make Your Home a Haven for Online Safety.  You can start by Locking Down Your Login.

Usernames and passwords no longer cut it.  You should be using longer passphrases or complex passwords that are longer in length and combine multiple types of characters and symbols.  Managing these can be cumbersome, so consider a Password Manager to help.  You should also use additional factors to strengthen your login.  Biometrics, 2 Factor, One-Time Codes and more options are available for most online sites and you should use them.  Learn more about strengthening your login at Lock Down Your Login.