By Andrew Roberts, MicroAge Chief Cybersecurity Strategist
Welcome to October – one of my favorite months of the year. For me, October is a time of reflection. My birthday is at the end of September, so October is the start of a new year. In Arizona, it brings an end to summer’s heat and we welcome cooler weather. In the north, October brings bright fall foliage and a crisp bite in the air. Many children look forward to Halloween at the end of the month. Another change that comes with October is found in stores where the holiday season is now in full swing, though not everyone is happy about that.
October is also Cybersecurity Awareness Month. It has been since 2004 when the President and Congress first declared it, and every year since then.
As I look to this year’s Cybersecurity Awareness Month, I still think we need to go beyond the typical October cybersecurity advice. Sure, we all need to know things like how to make a strong password or passphrase, and how they should never be reused for multiple applications. We should also be reminded about not clicking on that link or opening that attachment even if your distant relative is a Nigerian Prince. We should also remember that the email we got from the CEO asking us to buy some gift cards didn’t actually come from the CEO. But still – we need to turn our eye inward – and take a good look at our organization.
Organizational Cybersecurity Awareness
If you are a cybersecurity professional like me, let’s take a different look at Cybersecurity Awareness Month. After you’ve sent your witty and insightful October messages to your company employees and maybe even your customers, how about going the extra mile and taking an introspective look at your own cybersecurity awareness? I don’t mean whether you know good password practices and that other stuff, but how aware are you of the state of cybersecurity inside your own organization? Do you know where all your sensitive and important information is? Do you know if access to that data is appropriate and follows a solid least-privilege model? Is it all encrypted where it should be? What could you be doing to better protect that data?
How good is your multifactor authentication (MFA) deployment? Does it cover every employee in every situation where it should? We know that a proper MFA implementation can greatly reduce the risk to our systems. Is your MFA properly and fully implemented yet?
Look at your email, the number one vector for so many attacks; how well are you protected?
What about endpoint and server protection? How well is that covered? Are you confident and comfortable that malware, including ransomware, will be detected and stopped before the damage is too great? Are you able to respond to those detections and clean up the mess?
If you are not a cybersecurity professional and don’t have many – or any – in your organization, looking at all of that may seem like a daunting challenge. There’s good news – last month, MicroAge announced our comprehensive Managed Security Services, which give you Endpoint and Server protection, MFA, Email Security, and 24×7 monitoring and response – all along with user awareness training. Cybersecurity is complicated, so let the experts at MicroAge worry about keeping you secure – not only come October but throughout the year – so you can worry about more important parts of your business.
We should all be more self-aware when it comes to cybersecurity. Whether you do it yourself or leave it to pros like MicroAge, that self-evaluation can only make you better.
We can help you simplify your cybersecurity journey.
Contact your MicroAge Account Executive at (800) 544-8877 to start a conversation about your cybersecurity needs today.
“As MicroAge Chief Cybersecurity Strategist, Andrew partners with clients to help them achieve great accomplishments in their cybersecurity, governance, risk and compliance programs. He is building a successful cybersecurity practice by focusing on client success, sales enablement and partner alignment. Andrew brings a wealth of experience in audit, advisory and cybersecurity leadership and freely shares that knowledge to help put clients on the path to success.”Andrew RobertsMicroAge Chief Cybersecurity Strategist