Cybersecurity month works to show the importance of keeping your technology safe and secure. The internet is a shared responsibility; online safety falls on the shoulders of all its users. Cybersecurity Awareness Month was launched by the National Cybersecurity Alliance (NCA) and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in the Fall of 2004 to help Americans safely navigate the web. The campaign is currently run by the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) in partnership with the NCA. The month has grown and is now annually endorsed by Congress as well as the office of the President of the United States. Since its inception, Cybersecurity Awareness Month has grown to reach consumers, businesses, and other internet users across the nation.
Each year, Cybersecurity Awareness Month has a new theme; this year’s theme is “See Yourself in Cyber”. This theme illustrates that while cybersecurity may seem complicated, it ultimately comes down to the user being aware and informed. This year’s iteration will focus on the “people” part of cybersecurity, focusing on providing information to all individuals and organizations so they can make smart decisions while on the web.
Here are a few tips from the CISA on how to make your online access more secure:
- Enable Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) – enabling MFA on all your accounts will help ensure that you are the only person able to access your account.
- Change up your passwords – many people use the same password, or a slightly different variation, across their accounts. Try using a different password for each site and consider using as long of a password as you can.
- Recognize and report phishing – if you suspect you may be the victim of a phishing attempt, you should report it immediately. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is the main agency that college scamming reports. Click here to report a scam to the FTC online.
- Don’t know how to recognize a phishing attempt? Click here to read our blog on how to spot a phishing scam!
- Update your software – regularly check your computer for software and security updates. Hackers can attack your computer in a variety of different ways to access your information. Updating your operating systems helps keep hackers out!
Cybersecurity is an everyday task, not just during October. There are many resources available to you throughout the year to help improve your online security:
NCA – the National Cybersecurity Alliance creates partnerships to empower users to keep themselves and their organizations safe online. Visit staysafeonline.org for more information.
DHS – The Department of Homeland Security’s “Be Cyber Smart” campaign helps young Americans learn about common scams and other cybersecurity basics. Visit the DHS website for more information.
NICCS – the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Careers and Studies provides resources for cybersecurity education, training, and workforce development. Visit the NICCS website for more information.
Throughout Cybersecurity Awareness Month, First Bank will be posting helpful news and resources about the #BanksNeverAskThat campaign from the American Bankers Association on social media. Make sure to frequently check out our Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram pages for more helpful tips and resources!