National Cyber Security Awareness Month Overview ‧ read
But that’s what National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM) strives to do. Every October, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security aims to help people “Use the internet safely and securely at home, work, and school, protecting the technology individuals use, the networks they connect to, and our shared digital assets.”
But the NSA is not the only threat to our privacy online. In the past couple of years, major data breaches have targeted the Target retail chain, Sony’s PlayStation Network, Ashley Madison, and many other corporations. Millions of people’s personal data was taken not by the government but by hackers who wanted to steal money, crash online services, blackmail adulterers, and commit other crimes.
The goal of NCSAM is to protect you from hackers such as these.
But what exactly is National Cyber Security Awareness Month? Here’s a full profile.
How NCSAM began
NCSAM was originally organized by the Department of Homeland Security and the National Cyber Security Alliance. But it’s since grown much bigger. The event now involves businesses, universities, and individual supporters across the United States. In 2015, around 1,000 companies and individuals championed the campaign.
The aims of NCSAM
Events: The campaign organizes and promotes cybersecurity awareness events across the U.S. throughout October. Past events have included workshops and an annual cybersecurity summit.
Online resources: The campaign’s website provides comprehensive digital security resources year round, including tips sheets, free security tools, helpful infographics, videos, and games. The resource center also provides information for parents, as well as tips for securing mobile devices, computer, and personal information.
NCSAM covers a broad range of themes
In 2016, the themes were:
- Every Day Steps Towards Online Safety with Stop.Think.Connect.™
- Cyber from the Break Room to the Board Room
- Recognizing and Combating Cybercrime
- Our Continuously Connected Lives: What’s Your ‘App’-titude?
- Building Resilience in Critical Infrastructure
Props from the president
“I call upon the people of the United States to recognize the importance of cybersecurity and to observe this month with activities, events, and training that will enhance our national security and resilience.”
The champions of NCSAM
Organizations who have supported NCSAM in the past include AT&T, Dell, IBM, the University of Illinois, Verizon, and password manager Dashlane.