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Cyber Security Awareness Month

Published October 26, 2022 

October is Cyber Security Month, and that means it's the perfect time to learn about cyber security and how to stay safe online. Cybersecurity is the practice of protecting your computer networks and user data from unauthorized access or theft. It's a vital part of staying safe in today's digital world, and everyone should take steps to improve their cyber security posture. In this blog post, we will discuss what cyber security is, ways to improve your cyber security, common cyber scams, cyber scams related to natural disasters, and what to do if you fall victim to cyber and how Cyber Security Month came to be.


What is Cyber Security? 

Cyber security includes the practices and technologies used to protect your computer networks and user data from unauthorized access or theft. It's important to note that cyber security is not just about protecting your data from hackers; it's also about protecting your data from accidental loss or destruction. There are many different types of cyber threats, and they can come from a variety of sources, including malicious cyber criminals, nation-states, and even insiders. 

There are a few key concepts that are important to understand in cyber security: 
Confidentiality: This refers to the practice of keeping information private and preventing unauthorized access. 

Integrity: This refers to the practice of ensuring that information is accurate and cannot be tampered with. 

Availability: This refers to the practice of ensuring that information is available when needed and preventing unauthorized access. 

These concepts are important because they form the foundation of cyber security. By understanding these concepts, you can begin to take steps to improve your cyber security posture.


Cyber Security Month

The National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) designated October as National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM) in 2004. The goal of NCSAM is to increase awareness about the importance of cyber security and to provide resources to help individuals and organizations stay safe online. Each year, the NCSA partners with government agencies, businesses, and nonprofit organizations to promote a different theme for NCSAM. This year's theme is "See Yourself in Cyber.

There are many ways that individuals and organizations can improve their cyber security posture. One important step is to create strong passwords and use multi-factor authentication whenever possible. Individuals should also be aware of the social engineering attacks that are common online, and be careful not to fall for phishing scams. Organizations should make sure that their networks are properly secured, and that they have a plan in place for responding to cyber incidents. 

October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month because it is important to raise awareness about cyber security all year round. However, this month provides a good opportunity to focus on the issue and provide more resources to help people stay safe online.


Ways to Improve Your Cyber Security 

There are a number of things you can do to improve your cyber security. Here are a few suggestions: 
Use strong passwords and never reuse them. 
Enable two-factor authentication whenever possible. 
Keep your software up to date. 
Be careful about what you click on and download. 
Use a VPN. 
Back up your data.


Common Cyber Scams

Cyber scams are becoming more and more common. Here are a few of the most common cyber scams: 
Phishing emails: These are emails that appear to be from a legitimate source, but are actually from an attacker who is trying to trick you into revealing personal information or downloading malware. 
Ransomware: This is a type of malware that encrypts your files and demands a ransom in order to decrypt them. 
Bitcoin scams: These are scams where you are promised a certain amount of Bitcoins if you send a smaller amount of Bitcoins to an address. 
Tech support scams: These are scams where someone pretends to be from a tech support company and tries to convince you to give them remote access to your computer or to pay for unnecessary services.

Avoiding Hurricane Ian Scams

With the recent Hurricane Ian happening so close to cyber security month, we felt it was important to highlight a few different ways scammers can take advantage of natural disasters within this blog.  

When a natural disaster such as a hurricane hits, scammers see it as an opportunity to take advantage of people. They may call or email you pretending to be from a charity or government agency and try to get you to donate money or give out your personal information. They may also offer housing or other assistance but request money upfront or ask for sensitive information like your social security number. 

To avoid these scams, always do your research before donating money or giving out personal information. Only donate to reputable charities and double-check the website or caller ID before giving out any information. Be suspicious of anyone who asks for money upfront or tries to rush you into making a decision. 

If you're in need of assistance after a natural disaster, be sure to check with your state or local government website for a list of legitimate aid organizations. Do not respond to any unsolicited offers of help.

What to Do If You Fall Victim to Cyber Fraud

Cyber fraud can be a devastating experience. If you have been the victim of cyber fraud, there are a few things you can do: 
Contact your bank or credit card company immediately. 
Report the incident to the FTC
Change your passwords and enable two-factor authentication on all of your accounts. 
Run a malware scan on your computer.  
Be extra vigilant in the future and don't click on any links or attachments from unknown sources.


Cyber security is an important issue, and there are many things that individuals and organizations can do to improve their cyber security posture. By taking steps to improve your cyber security posture and being aware of common cyber scams, you can help protect yourself from cyber attacks. And if you do find yourself the victim of cyber fraud, there are a few things you can do to minimize the damage. October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month, and it's a good time to focus on cyber security and learn more about how to stay safe online. 
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Skyler has been a Marketing Content Specialist at Neighborhood Credit Union since 2019. 

Who We Are 

As an active part of the community for 93 years, Neighborhood Credit Union is a not-for-profit financial organization serving the state of Texas with branch locations in Collin, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, and Tarrant counties. With assets topping $1 billion, Neighborhood Credit Union has a continuously growing membership of over 60,000. For more information, call (214) 748-9393 or visit our homepage


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