National Cybersecurity Awareness Month has grown into a global effort, with both individuals and organizations taking part — and for good reason.
Cyber-attacks continue to dominate tech headlines because of the far-reaching impact they have to everyone from everyday internet users to businesses and governments. The latest findings from IBM’s Cost of a Data Breach report shows the average cost to organizations at an all-time high, totaling $4.24 million.
Some of the largest data breaches on record show the amount of data impacted in the billions (with a “B”) per breach. Millions of people who rely on social media platforms, search engines, fitness apps, and even hotels have experienced the sinking feeling that comes with compromised data.
Unfortunately, these numbers will only continue to grow as the world becomes more digitally connected and bad actors become more sophisticated in their efforts.
That is, of course, unless we arm ourselves with the knowledge and skills to defend against the schemes brought on by attackers. Every October, we must promote digital safety awareness and ensure all citizens have the resources to keep their data secure online.
Since its inception, Cybersecurity Awareness Month has become an international event led by the National Cybersecurity Alliance and U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to equip people and organizations with the resources they need to secure their data online and prevent cyber-attacks.
Help us celebrate this month by taking part in any number of activities hosted by Global Knowledge, Skillsoft and the National Cybersecurity Alliance (and any others too!).
Here are some ways you can participate:
A Complete List of Activities Hosted by Global Knowledge
The Enemy Inside: How to Detect Supply Chain Attack and Stop it Before It’s Too Late
CQURE CEO Paula Januszkiewicz will teach security professionals the techniques that attackers use to hold supply chains hostage. She will also cover prevention mechanisms that can help IT defend the organization against an attack.
Learn to Keep Your Network Secure Using Nmap
Gain access to this hands-on lab and learn to use Nmap, an open-source port-scan tool, for networking discovery, vulnerability scanning and security risk detection. Included with the lab is a guide with exercises and detailed step-by-step instructions to help you get the most from the training.
Debunk Cybersecurity Myths with a Security Expert
James Michael Stewart, CISSP, produced a three-part video series that debunks cybersecurity myths and misinformation. He explains the ways some attackers can take advantage of everything from social media friends lists or the shortcoming of password authentication to compromise unsuspecting people.
A Week-by-Week Calendar from the National Cybersecurity Alliance
The National Cybersecurity Alliances offers resources on its website to help individuals and organizations spread awareness of security trends, issues, news and more. Head to its website for more details on the theme this year and weekly activities.
Here’s a summary based on what’s listed on its website:
Week of October 4 (Week 1): Be Cyber Smart
The first week of Cybersecurity Awareness Month will start with:
- Highlighting security best practices
- Focusing on cyber hygiene
- Starting with the basics
“Creating strong passwords and using multi-factor authentication, backing up your data, and updating your software are great places to start. This is a great way to Do Your Part #BeCyberSmart!”
Week of October 11 (Week 2): Fight the Phish
“Phishing attacks and scams have thrived since the COVID pandemic began in 2020 and today, phishing attacks account for more than 80 percent of reported security incidents.”
The second week with help people better understand phishing via:
- Text Message
- Chats and Chat bots
Phishing is a common tactic attackers use to gain access or compromise systems. Before you click any links, forward the email, or act, think twice and report suspicious activity.
Week of October 18 (Week 3): Explore. Experience. Share – (Cybersecurity Career Awareness Week)
The third week of Cybersecurity Awareness Month explores career opportunities and advancement with the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE).
“This is a week-long campaign that inspires and promotes the exploration of cybersecurity careers. Whether it’s students, veterans, or those seeking a career change, the dynamic field of cybersecurity is rapidly growing and has something for everyone.”
Week of October 25 (Week 4): Cybersecurity First
The final week focuses on how to make security a priority at home, at work, and everywhere in between.
“Make cybersecurity training a part of employee onboarding and equip staff with the tools they need to keep the organization safe. For individuals, keep cybersecurity at the forefront of your mind as you connect daily.”
Everyone must consider how cybersecurity impacts them, because it does. Smartphones, computers, and the millions of IoT-enabled devices collect data on people all over. If not kept secure, that data could be compromised, stolen and sold. Cybersecurity must become and remain a priority for all.
Find more helpful information on the National Cybersecurity Alliance’s website here.