October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month. Held every October, NCSAM is a collaborative effort between government and industry to raise awareness about the importance of cybersecurity and ensure all Americans have the resources they need to be secure online. This year’s overarching message—” Own IT. Secure IT. Protect IT.”—targets key concerns that include citizen privacy, consumer devices, and eCommerce security.
What Is Cybersecurity?
If you’re a security professional new to the field, you might be wondering what exactly qualifies as cybersecurity. Here’s a simple cybersecurity definition. Cybersecurity refers to preventative methods used to protect digitally shared information from being stolen, compromised or attacked by viruses or malicious code. Cybersecurity strategies include identity management, risk management, and incident management. For example, passwords are a cybersecurity tool you probably encounter every day. Other common cybersecurity tools include:
- Anti-virus/anti-malware software
- Software patches
- Two-factor authentication
Small Businesses Take the Biggest Risk
Cybersecurity is especially crucial for small businesses. According to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), 58% of cyberattacks target small businesses with devasting financial consequences. These attacks include phishing, malware, and ransomware. It’s also become a global issue. City of London Police Commissioner Ian Dyson noted that “… businesses lost £6.7 million as a result of social media and email accounts being compromised between April and September 2018”.
The Solution: Free Cybersecurity Toolkit
But, there’s good news. Global Cyber Alliance (GCA) and Mastercard released a new free Cybersecurity Toolkit specifically designed for small and medium businesses. The online resource is available worldwide and offers clear, actionable guidance and tools designed to combat the increasing volume of cyberattacks. The toolkit will also be regularly updated with input from users, industry experts and public and private partners across the globe. Here’s what the kit includes:
- Operational tools that help businesses take inventory of cyber-related assets, create and maintain strong passwords, use multi-factor authentication, perform backups of critical data, prevent phishing and viruses, and more
- How-to materials like template policies and forms, training videos and other foundational documents organizations can tailor to their needs
- Recognized best practices from leading organizations including the Center for Internet Security Controls, the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre Cyber Essentials, the Australian Cyber Security Centre’s Essential Eight and Mastercard
Always Be Ready to . . . Own IT. Secure IT. Protect IT.
National Cybersecurity Awareness Month is the perfect time to upgrade your company’s cybersecurity with the free cybersecurity toolkit. However, to ensure you’re always employing the best security strategies, you’ll need to stay on top of the latest security and cybersecurity trends. Sign up for The Security Station newsletter and we’ll keep you updated on industry news that will help your business stay safe, and be successful!