October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month (#CyberAware). Lead by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the National Cyber Security Alliance, the month is designed to be a collaboration between government and industry with the aim of providing both businesses and individuals with the information and tools they need to ensure their security in the increasingly online world.

The key message of National Cybersecurity Awareness Month is to teach people to be on the lookout for cyberattacks and to teach them how to protect themselves from such attacks, while continuing to fully engage online. The key campaign, now in its fifth year is STOP. THINK. CONNECT. The slogan is designed to provide actionable advice that will help people stay safe and secure online.

STOP: make sure security measures are in place.
THINK: about the consequences of your actions and behaviors online.
CONNECT: and enjoy the Internet.


Free Small Business Cybersecurity Webinar

Each week in October has a different focus, covering both business and personal online activity. Of particular interest to small businesses is this week’s National Cyber Security Alliance webinar, Creating a Culture of Cybersecurity at Work. The presentation is aimed at small businesses and will cover specific threats such as data breaches and identity theft and how to prevent them, as well as steps to take if your business does experience an attack. The recommendation is a holistic approach to security, and the webinar will provide guidance on how to create a “culture of cybersecurity” for your small business. Registration details follow. Take an hour of your Thursday to attend this free webinar.

Creating a Culture of Cybersecurity at Work
Thursday, October 8, 2015 from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM (EDT)
Register Here


Other Small Business Cybersecurity Awareness Events

In addition to the webinar, there are Cybersecurity Awareness events going on across the country throughout the entire month of October. See a list here to find one in your area.

You can also join weekly Twitter chats using #ChatSTC. Today’s topic is International 2FA Tuesday (#2FactorTuesday), and will discuss the advantages of using 2-factor authentication to secure your online user accounts. Other discussions take place each Thursday at 3PM (EDT). This week continues the discussion from the above webinar, and covers “How to Create a Culture of Cybersecurity at Any Organization.” See a full list of future topics here.


Small Business Cybersecurity Resources

As part of the month’s activities, the sponsoring organizations have put together a number of resources designed to help small businesses implement cybersecurity programs. Check-out the following:

  • Stop.Think.Connect. Small Business Resources from the Department of Homeland Security
    This resource list includes a small business tip cards for general security, entrepreneurs, mobile, social media, travel, and the internet of things; a number of presentations you can use to educate your team; and other security related planning guides and overviews.
  • C³ Voluntary Program Small and Midsize Business Toolkit
    Also from the Department of Homeland Security, this toolkit was specifically created for SMBs to help these companies recognize and address security risks. It includes sections on Understanding the Threat Environment, Top Resources for SMB, Cybersecurity for Startups, C³ Voluntary Program Outreach and Messaging Kit, SMB Leadership Agenda, and a Hands-On Resource Guide.
  • RE: Cyber
    This program is collaboration of National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) and Business Executives for National Security (BENS), and is designed to help small business CEOs and Boards to focus on understanding and managing cyber risk. It covers everything from risk assessment and management, to oversight, the legal landscape, and company awareness efforts.
  • Keep My Business Safe
    RE: Cyber is the first component of this larger program, also developed by NCSA, that provides the tools small businesses need to protect their business, employees, and customers from online attacks and data breaches.
  • SBA Cybersecurity for Small Businesses Training Course
    The Small Business Administration created this 30 minute presentation as an introduction to securing information in a small business.
  • Cyber Resilience Review (CRR)
    The US Computer Emergency Readiness Team (a division of the Department of Homeland Security) created this non-technical self-assessment form to enable businesses to evaluate their programs and practices related to risk management, incident management, service continuity, and others. You can download the Assessment Package, as well as instructions and documentation at the CCR site.


Small Business Security Tips

Securing your small business is a common topic in Tip of the Week posts. In honor of National Cybersecurity Month, revisit the following from earlier this year:


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Lisa Hephner

Lisa Hephner

My name is Lisa, and I'm the Vice President of Knowledge, responsible for the management of corporate, product, competitor, marketplace, legal, and regulatory knowledge, and creation and dissemination of knowledge tools using these assets to PaySimple prospects, customers, employees, and partners.

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