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National Cyber Security Awareness Month: Are you doing your part?

NCSAMEditor’s note: The following post was written by Thomas Duffy, Executive Director of the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center, Center for Internet Security.

It’s October, and of course that means it’s National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM). This is a great time to think about our online activities and the ways we can make ourselves safer in cyber space.

NCSAM is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in partnership with the Center for Internet Security (CIS), NASCIO, the National Cyber Security Alliance, and many other public and private sector organizations across the nation.

Here are some of the ways you can participate and promote cyber security this month.

Join CIS for a live webcast October 10th

We’ll discuss strategies on how to promote cyber security awareness at all levels. We will be joined by Brenda Decker, Chief Information Officer for the state of Nebraska and President of the National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO), along with Dan Lohrmann, Chief Security Officer for the state of Michigan. The webcast takes place on Thursday, October 10 at 2:00 pm Eastern. It’s free and open to the public. Registration is available online.

Sign the Cyber Security Pledge

At CIS, we are once again conducting a national Cyber Security Pledge campaign to encourage citizens to declare their commitment to using good practices for staying safe on the Internet. NCSAM highlights the importance of empowering citizens, businesses, government, and schools to improve their cyber security preparedness.

The Cyber Security Pledge delineates best practices and key actions that users should take to protect themselves and their information both at home and in the workplace, including using strong passwords and safeguarding mobile devices. The pledge is also a call to action that encourages users to spread the message of good cyber security practices to their friends, co-workers, neighbors and community.

To learn more best practices and join our online movement, sign the pledge now!

After you sign the pledge, please encourage your friends, family, co-workers, and neighbors—everyone you can—to do the same!  If we each pledge to do our part to make our piece of cyber space just a little bit more secure, we can truly make a difference in helping protect our nation’s cyber assets.

Sign up for the National K-12 Computer Safety Poster Contest

Our poster contest encourages children and young adults to use the Internet safely and to craft messages and images that will best resonate with their peers across the country. The winners will be awarded a prize and receive the honor of having their artwork used in the 2015 Cyber Security Toolkit calendar, which is distributed to all 50 states.

The schools with winning entries will also receive calendars and additional educational materials to promote cyber security within their school district. Last year, more than 2,000 students from 16 states participated. More information about the 2014 Poster Contest is available on October 10 at:

For details about many more activities and resources for Cyber Security Awareness Month, visit our site at:


The Center for Internet Security, Inc. is a 501c3 nonprofit organization focused on enhancing the cyber security readiness and response of public and private sector entities. CIS produces consensus-based, best practice secure configuration benchmarks and security automation content; serves as the key cyber security resource for state, local, territorial and tribal governments; and provides resources that help partners achieve security goals through expert guidance and cost-effective solutions. Learn more at or @CISecurity.


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