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In the underworld, reality itself has elastic properties and is capable of being stretched into different definitions of the truth.

Roderick Vincent, The Cause

So, you think your computer is one of the best things you own? Then why not take the time to protect it?! It all starts with cleaning out the cobwebs and adding in Anti-Virus software to ensure your device has at least minimal protection.

It doesn’t end there though, check the settings on your firewall to make sure you’re safe and ensure your network has a password on it. This can be a daunting proposition for those who aren’t tech savvy, but National Cyber Security Awareness Month is the ideal opportunity to learn a little more about how to keep your net travel safe and secure.

It’s time to get started with National Cyber Security Awareness Month!

History of National Cyber Security Awareness Month

Staring in October, 2004, the world began to notice that Cyber Security was becoming a huge concern. The more people used the internet, the more risk there was for breaches in security. Even at that time, in the roughly ten years or so since the internet had become a public space, hackers had already started getting in where they don’t belong and cybersecurity had already become an issue. It was with these needs in mind that National Cyber Security Awareness Month was established to help foster attention for this issue that has become a critical part of pretty much everyone’s lives.

Every day, billions of people are using the internet to accomplish tasks in cyberspace. And for those who don’t know how to protect themselves, this is a risky venture. That’s because each day, thousands of people have their networks compromised and their security stolen, due to the fact that they don’t know how to secure their web-equipped devices correctly. This includes desktop computers, laptops, tablets and phones, all of which contain important information that can be extremely sensitive, and even dangerous, if acquired by the wrong people.

This spawned the idea for the National Cyber Security Association (the NCSA) to take steps to raise awareness of this issue. Every year the NCSA continues to monitor the risks to America’s cybersecurity, paying attention to everything from the largest government office to the individual home user.

Everyone who is ever gaining access to the web needs to understand how to make their experience there safe and enjoyable. From pamphlets and websites to seminars and programming, the NCSA helps to drive understanding and awareness during Cyber Security Month.

How to Celebrate National Cyber Security Awareness Month

So many people simply don’t keep up with the advances made in technology over time, but National Cyber Security Awareness Month is here to remind the world how important it is. Try getting involved with these ideas:

Get That Anti-Virus Program Running

Start off National Cyber Security Awareness Month by opening up your computer and running your antivirus program on a deep scan. Don’t have one or don’t know how to do that? It’s time to go off to the internet and research the topic. At first, it may seem exceedingly confusing and difficult, but those who will just take the time to learn about and install a cybersecurity software program will be ensuring that they have a safe experience all throughout the future. Also, since computer viruses have a tendency to evolve over time, it’s vitally important to take action when the security software offers prompts to install updates.

At various points during this month, take time to look at all your devices and run scans on them to ensure that they’re secure and free from viruses.

Get Those Passwords Changed

Most everyone knows that they should be changing the passwords on their devices and secure accounts on a fairly regular basis. But do most people do it? Nope. They forget to do it, or are inconvenienced by the idea of having to remember a new password every so often. Now is the time!

Change the password on your Network just to be certain, and also go ahead and update the security software on all of those devices. Every day the internet becomes more dangerous for those who don’t secure their devices. National Cyber Security Awareness Month is the perfect opportunity for people to avoid falling prey to hackers and remove themselves from that list.

Get Educated About CyberSecurity

While it can be a complicated topic, the more people learn, the more equipped they are to protect themselves against nefarious creatures who are out on the web.

The CyberSecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) in the United States offers free tips and resources online to help people get more informed about risks and prevention. Tip sheets can be used for individuals or businesses, on topics such as Identity Theft, Cybersecurity at Work, Multi-factor Authentication, Passwords, Cyber Security while Traveling, and many other compelling topics. Presentations are also made available for businesses to use with their clients or other audiences.  

Take IT an Awareness Training Course

Those who are even more serious about their online security might consider taking a course that is specifically geared toward learning more about this topic. Business owners and managers, team leaders and members, and pretty much anyone who ever uses a computer can benefit from such training.

Various free training courses can be found online. One particularly trustworthy collection of courses is through Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

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