Cyber Security Awareness Month is observed in the United States and Canada. The purpose is to increase public awareness of cyber security. The theme for the 2013 National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM) is Our Shared Responsibility.
There are many areas to consider when discussing cyber security. The area I consider most dangerous is Identity Theft. Identity Theft occurs when someone uses your personal information without your knowledge. With your personal information, thieves are able to open credit cards and bank accounts, set up mobile service, make online purchases and more, destroying your credit in the process.
Let's examine what we can do to protect ourselves from Identity Theft.
Prevent Identity TheftA few items to consider to protect your personal information include:
- Only provide your Social Security Number when absolutely necessary.
- Never publicly post your address, phone number, driver’s license number, social security number (SSN) or student ID number.
- Shred documents that contain personal information.
- Use a strong password to protect your banking, credit card as well as accounts where you make online purchases or make payments.
- Use a unique password at each site.
- Don’t give out personal information on the phone, through the mail or over the Internet unless you initiated the contact.
- Keep your computer updated with both Microsoft Security Updates as well as third-party software such as Adobe and Oracle Java products.
What cyber security tips do you have? Share your favorites in the comments and be sure to check the additional resources provided below.
- Canadian Twitter Accounts:
-- Public Safety Canada, @Safety_Canada
-- Get Cyber Safe, @getcybersafe
- Get Cyber Safe
- Microsoft Safety and Security Center
- Stay Safe on Line: National Cyber Security Awareness Month
- Stop | Think | Connect
- U.S. Department of Homeland Security: National Cyber Security Awareness Month
- U.S. Twitter Accounts:
-- NatlCyberSecAlliance @StaySafeOnline
-- Identity Theft Resource Center, @ITRCSD
-- STOP THINK CONNECT, @STOPTHINKCONNECT