Every day, billions of people use the internet to carry out various tasks, and it is hard to imagine life without our devices. Hackers are doing a lot of damage in the cyberspace, making cybersecurity an issue. This implies that those who don't know how to protect themselves are at a very high risk of breaches and malicious attacks.
Cybersecurity is not a one man's job; it is everyone's. If there's one thing that is common, anyone can be a victim of a cyber-attack, such as phishing, ransomware, and more. And with the increasing volume of cyber-attacks, there is more need for cybersecurity awareness.
This brought about the idea for the National Cybersecurity Alliance (NCA) to raise awareness on the issue of cybersecurity. Officially known as Cybersecurity Awareness Month, this awareness program helps businesses jumpstart security and ensures that every employee adopts safe online habits.
Since 2004, October has been dedicated to celebrating Cybersecurity Awareness Month. Sponsored by the National Cybersecurity Alliance (NCA) and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), the goal is to encourage all tech users, business owners, and employees to be aware of the potential risks and online threats.
It is important to note that the major problem of security breaches is not due to cybersecurity systems or defenses; 95% of cybersecurity problems result from human error. This is why over 90% of cybercrime incidents in business are caused by criminals targeting employees.
This awareness program focuses on helping businesses with simple steps to detect and prevent malicious activities, as well as protect themselves and their identities.
Each year, there is a theme for Cybersecurity Awareness Month, and the theme for Cybersecurity Awareness Month 2022 is 'See Yourself in Cyber.' The theme highlights the responsibility of everyone in cybersecurity and addresses the need to empower and train all employees to know more about cyber threats and attacks.
For the 2022 Cybersecurity Awareness Month, here are four key action steps the CISA and NCA want everyone to take
Aside from having strong usernames and passwords to serve as protection, nothing beats having double protection; that is where multi-factor authentication comes in. Multi-factor authentication (MFA) is a service that adds extra layers of protection to the standard password and provides a more secure method to authenticate online identification.
Businesses need to enforce the MFA process on all employees. This not only serves as a great form of validation, but it also makes using the employee's details to steal difficult.
Here's how it works: After entering your username and password, before you can be logged in, you will be prompted to enter two or more additional authentication processes. Once accepted, you will be logged in. These authentication methods include biometrics, unique codes, personal ID code, and others.
Passwords are one of the easiest ways hackers and criminals access and breach a company. This is because employees use simple or easily formed passwords across all their platforms.
Using your middle name, birthday, pet type, or child's name with their birthday isn't much better. These passwords are easy to guess.
Using random words, letters, or symbols creates a strong password that makes it difficult for cybercriminals or hackers to guess. This gives an extra level of security to your business.
Here are tips for creating a strong password
Note: Do not use the same password across all platforms. For each platform, generate a new password. If you have an issue remembering them, use a password manager to store all your passwords.
This is one aspect employees and executives need to recognize – phishing. Phishing continues to grow in popularity as it has become one of the key ways cybercriminals hide malware or other attack forms. This attack is carried out through fake emails, links, or attachments to trick you into giving out your personal information, such as username and password, credit card details, and more.
Ensure you train your employees to think twice before opening any links or attachments or responding to emails or SMS. Once any link, email, SMS, or attachment seems suspicious, it should be reported. It is likely a phishing scheme.
One of the reasons it is easy for cybercriminals to attack is that most businesses use out-of-date systems or software, making the business vulnerable. This way, cybercriminals take advantage of these vulnerabilities to gain access to the network. Once in, it may not be easy to take preventative actions.
You can get the services of an MSP to help update your software and system and encrypt your data.
Updating your software or systems is one of the most effective ways to mitigate cyber-attacks. This process helps remove malware or critical vulnerabilities used to access your devices.
Education is one of the primary objectives of Cybersecurity Awareness Month. The more knowledge the employees and employers have, the better they will be prepared to handle cyber-attacks.
As a result, resources are provided during Cybersecurity Awareness Month. These resources are invaluable tools that help reduce cybersecurity risks and protect yourself online.
Here are some free resources to celebrate Cybersecurity Awareness Month
Sign up here if you want to be a Cybersecurity Awareness Month Champion and get these resources.
Everyone can make a difference during Cybersecurity Awareness Month. Celebrate Cybersecurity Awareness Month this October and dive deep into best practices on Cybersecurity!
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