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October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month—Are You Cyber Insecure?

It's October, and that means there are two annual occasions to keep in mind—Halloween is at the end of the month, and it’s National Cybersecurity Awareness Month (NCSAM)! Did you know that there is a National Cybersecurity Awareness Month—is it new to you? Well, it may still be unknown to a lot of people, but for 17 years the federal government and U.S. industry have collaborated on NCSAM; together they create a yearly educational campaign to provide up-to-date, “how to” instructions and facts on cybersecurity to assist all Americans with the resources they need to be safer and more secure online.

This year the U.S government’s Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) and the government/private industry National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) jointly are promoting the theme of “Do Your Part. #BeCyberSmart.” CISA and NCSA emphasize that this theme encourages individuals and organizations to be personally responsible for protecting their activities on the internet; the theme stresses individual accountability and the importance of taking proactive steps to enhance your cybersecurity.

For their campaign, CISA and the NCSA always create and offer a lot of free, current information on cybersecurity, and they’ve done that again this year. For 2020, NCSAM has a non-technical, but still comprehensive, presentation on cybersecurity that is educational for both companies and consumers, and it may be viewed and downloaded from NCSAM. Other NCSAM materials include almost a dozen downloadable “tip sheets” with practical details on protecting yourself online; the tip sheets are directly linked to below:

While the government has good cybersecurity information, Delta Community has some useful, do-it-yourself advice too. Following are additional resources that we hope might help you be more cybersecurity aware, not just for this month, but throughout the year:

Besides the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency and the National Cyber Security Alliance, there are even more government sources worth checking out. The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has terrific information for consumers on many topics related to cybersecurity; an excellent place to start looking at what it covers is on the FTC consumer site. Some of the FTC's topics include these areas shown just below, and you should at least give them a quick look:

While October's Halloween is a time for enjoying candy, costumes, decorations, fantasy threats, and prank scares, the destructive activities of cyber criminals are quite real and serious. There are always people who use the internet to harm others, and we all need to first be well-informed and then take actions to protect ourselves and those we care about from online threats. So, for 2020 National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, do your part, be cybersmart, and learn how to manage and prevent personal cybersecurity threats!