October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month—a time to raise awareness for online safety, promote cybersecurity best practices, and incorporate them into our everyday lives.
This year’s theme is “It’s easy to stay safe online,” according to the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) and the National Cybersecurity Alliance.
The four behaviors of this year’s Cybersecurity Awareness Month focus on:
- Enabling multi-factor authentication
- Utilizing strong passwords
- Keeping software updated
- Knowing the red flags of phishing and how to report it
We’re taking a closer look at each behavior and providing more information on how you can incorporate it into your organization and personal life.
Enabling Multi-factor authentication (MFA)
MFA is a method of access that requires more than just a password and adds a second layer of security to help prevent anyone other than an authorized individual from gaining access to a secure system. Use multi-factor authentication whenever possible to keep your accounts more secure. Here are some additional MFA resources:
Utilizing Strong Passwords
Use complex passwords or passphrases, at least 12 characters with a combination of upper- and lower-case letters, numbers, and special characters. Change your password at least every 90 days and don’t reuse passwords across multiple systems. Do not share your password with others. Here are some additional password resources:
Update Operating Systems and Anti-Virus Software
Ensure your operating system is set for automatic updates and reboot your system regularly. Antivirus and anti-malware programs should automatically check for updates and scan your devices. Here are some additional software update resources:
- 7 Ways to Engage in Cybersecurity Awareness—Every Day
- 5 Cybersecurity Tips to Protect Your Data [Video]:
Recognizing and reporting Phishing
Phishing is a leading cause of global data breaches—launching multiple platforms in their attack, including email, phone calls, and texts. Knowing how to detect the red flags and react to phishing attacks is your first line of defense against them. Check out the following resources about Phishing: