This year marks the 20th annual Cybersecurity Awareness Month, which was launched by the Department of Homeland Security and the National Cyber Security Alliance to raise awareness about digital security and empower individuals to protect their personal data. The theme, Secure Our World, will be used year-round and in future Cyber Awareness Months. Secure Our World focuses on 4 steps every individual can take to stay safe online.
Cybersecurity experts weigh in on topics related to October’s Cybersecurity Awareness Month:
Andrew Hollister, CISO and VP Labs R&D at LogRhythm
“Each year, Cybersecurity Awareness Month serves as a valuable reminder of the critical importance of fortifying our organizations’ cybersecurity posture in an increasingly interconnected world. This year, Cybersecurity Awareness Month’s focus is on four key behaviors: enabling multi-factor authentication, using strong passwords and a password manager, updating software, and recognizing and reporting phishing attempts—all essential practices in safeguarding against cyberattacks. Our growing reliance on digital technology within the business landscape is accompanied by escalating threats and vulnerabilities that pose significant risks to sensitive data, financial stability, and even national security.
“In the face of these escalating threats, it is worth noting that 67% of respondents in a recent study reported their companies losing business deals due to customers’ lack of confidence in their security strategies. A solid security strategy has become a business imperative, and all too often, organizations either fail to do the basics or don’t truly understand the full scope of the threat they are facing. Digital transformation over the past decade has led us to a place where much of our data has moved to the cloud and our user communities have also at least partially “moved to the cloud” as well post-pandemic – in various forms of hybrid work patterns. Let us use Cybersecurity Awareness Month as a catalyst for action. Strengthen your organization’s defenses, educate your teams, and invest in technology solutions that enable you to reduce your overall risk. By doing so, we can collectively fortify our digital foundations, protect our critical assets, and ensure a safer digital future for all.”
Bala Kumar, Chief of Product at Jumio
“There are a number of commonly used verification tools out there today, like multi-factor authentication (MFA) and knowledge-based authentication. However, these tools aren’t secure enough on their own. With the rise of new technologies like generative AI, cybercriminals can develop newer and more complex attacks that organizations need to be prepared for. Fraudsters can leverage ChatGPT, for instance, to create more convincing and targeted phishing scams to increase their credibility and impact, victimizing more users than before.
This month’s emphasis on cybersecurity reminds us that organizations must build a strong foundation starting with user verification and authentication to efficiently protect customer and organizational data from all forms of fraud. Strong passwords and MFA are always beneficial to have, but with the increasing sophistication of cyberattacks, organizations must implement biometric-backed identity verification methods. By cross-referencing the biometric features of an onboarded user with those of the cybercriminal attempting to breach the company, organizations can prevent attacks and ensure that the user accessing or using an account is authorized and not a fraudster, keeping vital data out of criminals’ reach.”
Kris Lahiri, Co-Founder and Chief Security Officer, Egnyte:
In today’s hybrid work environment, prioritizing cybersecurity is critical. Cyber threats are intensifying, with severe and long-lasting impacts on businesses. Yet, many organizational leaders still remain in the dark when it comes to protecting and managing their content. As we observe Cybersecurity Awareness Month, it’s important to remember that cybersecurity is not just about checking boxes. The frequency and scale of cyber attacks have continued to skyrocket, along with the financial toll and damage to brand reputation. Unfortunately, many organizations lack the proper tools to detect these attacks. Business leaders must also understand that the threat landscape is rapidly changing. Companies can improve their cybersecurity posture by combining foundational practices with cutting-edge technologies. Leveraging secure solutions doesn’t have to be complicated or robust to ensure safer data transactions and achieve unparalleled insights into content usage and access. Overall, businesses can avoid becoming a statistic and refine their data management strategies by making cybersecurity a team sport so that it is an integral part of their employees’ daily lives through education and prevention.