October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month


October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month

Throughout my career, I have remained committed to the idea that any business can achieve the ideal level of security by combining the right people, procedures, and technological tools. You can’t simply hire the best people, write the best policies, or buy your way to security through technology. Staying safe requires a planned, well-executed strategy in which each participant understands how to contribute to the organization’s security.

Recognizing the need for education, the US declared October National Cyber Security Awareness Month twenty years ago. Initially, it was a vehicle for government and businesses to collaborate to raise awareness of cybersecurity’s importance and guarantee that all Americans can access the resources they need to stay safer and more secure online.

Adopting Cybersecurity Best Practices

October is a time to promote a workplace cybersecurity culture, protecting personal devices and emphasizing the importance of preserving critical and sensitive information. Employee collaboration is required in the typical CU setting to identify dangers and take appropriate action. As a sector, we must help individuals and organizations strengthen their cybersecurity posture and promote a safe online environment.

During this month, Credit Unions should promote adopting appropriate cybersecurity practices and increase public understanding of the significance of cybersecurity.

  • Cybersecurity Training: The risks and threats posed by cyberattacks may not be fully understood by many people, especially those who do not actively work in the technology business. Include general information about internet dangers like phishing, malware, ransomware, and identity theft. After learning this information, people are better prepared to take precautions for their online safety.

  • Enterprise Protection: Businesses that are the targets of cyberattacks may suffer financially and reputationally. This month encourages businesses of all sizes to implement adequate cybersecurity precautions to secure their sensitive data, customer information, and intellectual property. It also helps them understand the financial and legal ramifications of failing to protect their digital assets appropriately.

  • Support from the government and policymakers: Employees should know the current regulatory requirements and their place in meeting them.

  • Promotion of Best Practices: The campaign promotes the best practices for internet security, including making strong, unique passwords, turning on two-factor authentication, keeping software up to date, and being careful of dubious emails and links. Individuals can significantly reduce their susceptibility to cyber threats by following these practices.

Activities during this month emphasize the importance of cybersecurity expertise in defending digital infrastructure and responding to cyber incidents. It might also encourage others to consider a career in cybersecurity, addressing the shortage of qualified professionals in the sector.

Cybersecurity Resources

In summary, National Cybersecurity Awareness Month is a time we can use to promote cybersecurity awareness, education, and action. When you highlight the importance of cybersecurity to your credit union and your members, you can teach preventative measures we can use to enhance our resilience to attack.

Pure IT’s vCISO program helps credit unions holistically improve their security posture, including everything from InfoSec training for end users through the Board of Directors.

CISA, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, has many resources online to help guide your efforts; tip sheets, videos, posters, and presentations are available for free download here. Pure IT partner, the National Credit Union ISAO (NCU-ISAO), is another excellent resource for credit unions interested in enhancing their cyber resiliency through information sharing.