Beginning in October 2004, National Cybersecurity Awareness Month has continually drawn attention to the issue of cybersecurity and the resources available to ensure Internet safety on a national scale.
Since its creation by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the National Cyber Security Alliance, National Cybersecurity Awareness Month (NCSAM) has grown exponentially due to the continuous expansion of both American consumers and international corporations. Now in its 16th consecutive year, NCSAM proves to be an invaluable result of the collaboration between government and private industry.
The issues originally handled by the National Cybersecurity Awareness Month differ greatly from the issues NCSAM currently addresses. When NCSAM began, the awareness efforts focused on antivirus software and other baseline precautions. Throughout the years, as cybersecurity awareness progressed, NCSAM developed the theme of ‘Our Shared Responsibility’ to emphasize that individuals, multimillion-dollar corporations, and everyone in-between can play an important part in establishing cybersecurity. Presently, the theme of NCSAM 2019 is ‘Own IT. Secure. IT. Protect IT.’ The main focus of this theme is to evoke personal accountability and proactivity regarding cybersecurity, cyberthreats, and cyber best-practices. Actionable steps include protection for social media accounts, the necessity for unique passwords, and utilizing the latest security software & operating systems.
National Cybersecurity Awareness Month has proven to be a success on the part of the DHS and the National Cyber Security Alliance and will continue to engage and educate Americans on cybersecurity for years to come.