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CyberSecurity Awareness Month

By Wendy Batten posted Fri October 02, 2020 03:04 PM


Security is still top of mind in the new digital world we live in. How do you stay cybersafe?

October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NSCAM), and each year it serves as a timely reminder of the importance of staying safe in our online lives—both at work and at home. This wonderful awareness effort was started 17 years ago by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in partnership with National Cyber Security Alliance. Despite the event’s long history, in this strange year of 2020 it feels more important than ever to step back, review and improve the cyber safety of ourselves and our loved ones.

At IBM Security, we’re taking a personal approach to cyber awareness this year. Most of us are still working remotely and many have family members home in a learning environment with all the challenges this poses.

To kick off a month of special content and events connected to cybersecurity awareness, we asked our leaders from all over the world to make a short video of tips on how they are keeping cyber safe in their own lives. Each had different perspectives and advice that we hope you will find valuable. Watch the video and let us know what you think (or what tips you’d add!) in the comments section below. We'll be posting additional videos with more tips and recommendations throughout this month, so be sure to check back regularly.

My own advice stems from having an 8 -year-old daughter in third grade who is currently remote learning. To help keep her safe online, I took a number of precautions – and I’ve also already learned some important lessons myself. First, when I set up my daughter’s online learning applications and tele-conferencing accounts (Zoom and Teams, in this case) I connected them to a parental account in order to limit who can contact her and view her information. I also have a family iCloud account that she is part of, which lets me control the apps she can access and limits buying without permission. (This, I admit, is a lesson I learned the hard way!)

One last tip I can offer relates to the use of payment applications like Venmo or PayPal, which is unsurprisingly on the rise. Make sure all your payments are private under the settings area. I am amazed by how much this data can tell someone about who you are paying and what you’re buying – sensitive information you may not want to be sharing.

In the end though, the most important thing I can tell you during Cybersecurity Awareness Month or at any other point in the year is that IBM Security has your back when it comes to keeping ahead of business threats that are growing at an inordinate rate.

I also want to personally invite you to attend 3 upcoming webinars happening right here on the IBM Security Community (which, by the way, you should join if you aren’t yet a member):

Cybersecurity Awareness Month:

Maria Battaglia

IBM Security Brand & Customer Marketing