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National Cybersecurity Awareness Month 2019 Theme: ‘Own IT. Secure IT. Protect IT’

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NCSAM Logo credits - niccs.us-cert.gov

  • Created by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and National Security Alliance, the program aims at creating security awareness among individuals.
  • This year’s theme primarily focuses on citizen privacy, the safety of consumer devices and e-commerce security.

This October will mark the 16th anniversary of National Cybersecurity Awareness Month aka NCSAM. The theme for this year’s NCSAM is ‘Own IT. Secure IT. Protect IT’. Created by the U.S.Department of Homeland Security and National Security Alliance, the program aims at creating security awareness among individuals.

What is the purpose of the program?

Held every year in October, the significant campaign has been put in place to make Americans more aware of cybersecurity, including online security.

This year’s theme primarily focuses on citizen privacy, the safety of consumer devices and e-commerce security. With this, the program aims at encouraging personal accountability and proactive behavior in security best practices while drawing attention to careers in cybersecurity.

Let’s have a close look at what does 2019’s theme stand for:

Own IT

  • This indicates that every online user should understand the privacy and safety of their digital profiles. Having a healthy understanding of what’s being shared, how it is being stored and where the information is stored is essential to protect your data.
  • It is very necessary to limit access to digital accounts by changing the ‘Privacy Settings’. With many people failing to realize the importance of privacy, can leave their personal details exposed to cybercriminals.
  • Never provide sensitive details to unknown sources or to posts that look alluring. Cybercriminals often create these posts to entice visitors in an attempt to steal their data.
  • Keep a tab of all installed apps and remove the ones which are no longer in use. This is the best practice for data privacy.

Secure IT

  • This implies that everyone should implement an additional layer of security to protect their online accounts, be it for banking or social media.
  • Using strong passwords and turning on multi-factor authentication are some common practices that must be followed to secure online accounts. It is also recommended to uses passwords managers to generate and remember different complex passwords for each of the accounts.
  • Play hard to get away with phishers by knowing how to spot and avoid phishing emails. This increases your awareness of what’s coming into your email box.

Protect IT

  • This shows how responsible a user is while connecting a computer or a phone to the internet. Every click, share, send and post creates a digital imprint that can be exploited by cybercriminals. Hence, users must be careful and update to the latest security software, web browsers, and operating systems.
  • Use a VPN when connecting to public Wi-Fi to prevent threat actors from pilfering data from the device.
  • Organizations responsible for collecting and handling data, on the other hand, should implement the best security measures to keep consumer data and information safe.

Bottom line

National Cybersecurity Awareness Month is an ideal time to become cyber aware both at work and at home. For more details, click here.

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