Five worthy reads: Every month should be Cybersecurity Awareness Month!

Five worthy reads: Every month should be Cybersecurity Awareness Month!
Five worthy reads: Every month should be Cybersecurity Awareness Month!
Illustration by Deepak Kumar

Five worthy reads is a regular column on five noteworthy items we’ve discovered while researching trending and timeless topics. Organizations on a global scale observe Cybersecurity Awareness Month to educate and instruct their employees on cybersecurity best practices. This week we highlight some cybersecurity trends that are shaping the industry today.

Now in its 17th year, Cybersecurity Awareness Month has become a long-standing tradition, mostly in the United States. The event has caught fire on a global scale, and is observed by organizations that rely heavily on digital workplaces. The recent shift to a remote workspace, paired with the use of personal devices for work, has given rise to a plethora of security threats that organizations may not have previously prepared for. According to research by Barracuda Networks, a whopping 46 percent of global organizations have encountered at least one cybersecurity scare since transitioning to a remote workspace model.

While a remote workspace may not be every organization’s cup of tea, we are currently seeing the reopening of office spaces to accommodate a limited workforce, giving rise to a hybrid workspace model. This makes it challenging for IT teams stay on top of their security game without the cooperation of end users, especially when almost 50 percent of all cyberattacks are caused by employee negligence, according to a recent study by Kaspersky Lab. This is why, now is the best time for organizations to drive home the message that every month ought to be Cybersecurity Awareness Month.

Want to read up on the latest in cybersecurity? Let’s get straight to it with five essential reads on the importance of cybersecurity.

1. Cybersecurity best practices: An open letter to end users

As much as end users detest having best practices shoved down their throats, educators hate to do the shoving. Jack Wallen, award-winning writer for Tech Republic and other industry publications, woefully pens an open letter to end users, listing some do’s and dont’s of security best practices.

2. Ransomware attacks go through the roof

An increase in the volume of ransomware attacks has been noticed during the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, in the past three months alone, there has been a 50 percent increase worldwide, and it’s predicted to get worse. Experts say that the best option to protect against these attacks is effective end-user training—far more than just PowerPoint presentations.

3. Five cybersecurity trends from 2020 – And what the future holds

Financial Institutions will always continue to be the primary target for cyberattacks. As market forces pushes more and more FIs toward rapid digital transformation, it is imperative for these organizations to always maintain the upper hand by understanding, and staying up to date with the top cybersecurity trends.

4. COVID pandemic taught small businesses these important cyber security lessons

According to research by Data Connectors, cyberattacks can spread nine times as fast as COVID-19. With work from home being the new normal, hackers see these end users as sitting ducks, evidenced by a sharp increase in hacking and phishing activity. Here is an enlightening infographic that shows the consequences and the improvements required to protect your technology from these attacks.

5. Every day is cybersecurity awareness month

Sticking to the theme of the Cybersecurity Awareness Month, the author lists some do’s and don’ts for staying secure online, except it’s not your run-of-the-mill, everyday, email distribution list. He compares cybersecurity best practices to humorous anecdotes in his day-to-day life, making a rather bland tutorial enjoyable.

The primary objective of Cybersecurity Awareness Month is to identify threats and highlight the importance of cybersecurity best practices to detect and avoid cyberattacks. As highlighted in these stories, it is important for organizations to educate their end users on cybersecurity best practices effectively, and share responsibilities with them to keep their organizations threat-free. This education and training should transcend mundane presentations and slideshows, and should be ingrained into the users’ work ethic so every month is Cybersecurity Awareness Month.

** Optrics Inc. is an Authorized ManageEngine partner

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