Every year, National Preparedness Month (NPM) is recognized across the US in the month of September to promote emergency planning during times of family and community disasters. During this year’s NPM, Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), which provides extensive knowledge regarding cybersecurity to protect the country’s information infrastructure, intends to spread awareness about the necessity of cybersecurity preparedness.
Usually, getting prepared would mean taking steps and precautions in order to get through emergencies like natural disasters and similar difficulties.
CISA has ventured to extend this definition of preparedness even further by making people realize the level of impact cyber-threats can have on individuals, organizations and communities as a whole.
Cyber-related events like ransomware infections, data breaches and identity thefts can not only lead to loss of money and crucial information but may also hamper the safety and reputation of businesses and community services like power and transportation.
“Be Prepared, Not Scared”
To promote cyber-readiness, CISA has come up with an idea which suits the theme of this year’s NPM, i.e. “Be Prepared, Not Scared”, and will encourage organizations and individuals to develop their own responses in case of cyber emergencies. These responses may include control measures to be followed before, during and after any cybersecurity incident like keeping operating systems and software up-to-date, using two-factor authentication, backing up files regularly, and running antivirus scans on a routine basis.
During the National Preparedness Month, CISA, through the National Cyber Awareness System, will provide guidelines to citizens in order to prepare for and respond to unexpected security incidents.
Some of the tips and guidelines include:
- Protection Against Ransomware
- Preventing and Responding to Identity Theft
- Handling Destructive Malware
- Dealing with Cyberbullies
- Protection Against Malicious Code
- Staying Safe on Social Networking Sites
In the age of emerging cyber-threats and frequent data breaches, individuals and enterprises need to be prepared to act in the face of unwanted cyber-incidents. There are plenty of suitable resources related to cybersecurity preparedness also available which may benefit them. CISA’s commendable initiative to spread awareness regarding the same will surely highlight some of the fundamental cybersecurity practices and make ways for more cybersecurity-ready individuals and communities.