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Cybersecurity Awareness Month: Do your part, be cyber smart

October 2020 is Cybersecurity Awareness Month (CSAM 2020) — a month of discussions, presentations, and seminars designed to help everyone stay safe online. This year marks the 17th year of the CSAM, held annually since the National Security Alliance and the United States Department of Homeland Security inaugurated the first session of awareness back in 2004.

This year, the theme is “Do Your Part. #BeCyberSmart.” It is a reference to the fact that cybersecurity is everyone’s responsibility, and that we must educate ourselves to stay smart and stay safe while using the internet. While the online space provides us with many opportunities for growth and development, it also features inherent dangers.

The CSAM 2020 schedule

The events begin on October 1 and 2 with the Official CSAM Kick-off and a discussion with the Healthcare Panel on cybersecurity awareness in the medical field. It is followed by the “If You Connect IT, Protect IT” week, with events looking at how artificial intelligence and machine learning will play a key role in protecting IT systems. Week 2 will focus on “Securing Devices at Home and Work.”

We return to the topic of healthcare for week 3, which is oriented toward securing internet-connected devices in this field, before we move ahead to the fourth and final week of CSAM 2020, “The Future of Connected Devices.”

Useful resources

Putting together your cybersecurity strategy

CSAM 2020 will deliver a wealth of useful information and insight, but what else can you do to put together a winning cybersecurity awareness strategy?

  • Take an inventory of what you need to protect — Think about the systems you use, who is using them and how, and any potential vulnerabilities.
  • Build your worst-case scenarios — Which systems are most at risk? Which vulnerabilities have the biggest consequences for your business? Knowing the answers to these will help you allocate your resources.
  • Put detection measures in place — Watch for discrepancies in your analytics data, and deploy automated detection systems that actively scan for threats and breaches.
  • Plan your response — What will you do if a breach is detected? How will you disseminate the response while reducing business downtime?
  • Create a training program — Everyone needs to know their responsibilities when it comes to cybersecurity awareness. You also need to be able to pass on best practice advice and guidance to new hires.

Crafting a training program

Let’s take a look at how you can create a training program tailored to your business.

  • Analyze all the roles within your business, and apply your vulnerability findings to know which roles need specific types of training.
  • Record and publish your training routine so that it can be used on an ongoing basis, even if you undergo changes in personnel.
  • Adopt a program of assessment and development for your training schedule. If things are not working, consider how you can improve.
  • Call upon the services of a co-managed partner who can oversee the development of your training and nurture a culture of cybersecurity awareness.

KME Systems offers managed cybersecurity training and other services to help keep your business safe from cyberthreats. With the help of their team, you can make sure you do your part and stay cyber smart.