It's the end of National Cyber Security Awareness Month as we know it. Do you feel fine? Once every year, there are four weeks set aside on the calendar for those of us in IT — and, really, for all people everywhere — to focus on the importance of both improving our knowledge of information security best practices, and improving our actual implementation of said best practices. Your passwords, for example, aren't going to change themselves.
Hopefully over the past 25 days each of us has learned or been reminded of at least one thing that we each can do to hold the line against hackers and other cyber-mischief makers. There's still time, of course, to commit to making at least one small improvement in your approach to data protection, network integrity, better family computer controls, or whatever it is. People, after all, are the hardest single point of failure (SPOF) to neutralize in all of IT.
In a broader sense, however, the world doesn't need a National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM) so much as it needs a National Cyber Security Awareness Year (NCSAY), or maybe just a Constant State of National Cyber Security Awareness (CSNCSAM). In an ideal world, we wouldn't just remember to be grateful for our mothers, and think about all that they do for us, once a year on Mother's Day.
The same should apply to National Cyber Security Awareness Month. It's a good thing that we do actually have it at all, because a period of heightened awareness (hopefully) ensures that we think about the importance of better cybersecurity at least once per year. The best possible outcome, however, would be for all of us to think constantly about the importance of better cybersecurity. The price of true cybersecurity, like liberty, is eternal vigilance.
There's a great line in a report that appears in the most recent issue of Certification Magazine: "True and effective cybersecurity is only as unattainable as we’re willing to let it become. We need the average individual to have a better working knowledge of cybersecurity best practices, as well as a commitment to following them at all times. And we need quite a few more skilled professionals to take up cybersecurity as a career choice."
We can all join in building up a better working knowledge of cybersecurity best practices among average individuals. And if you want to be a part of the second, admittedly more difficult solution proposed, then TestOut Continuing Education can help. Our Security+ training has been completely overhauled to help you take and pass the brand new 501 version of CompTIA's Security+ certification exam. Start today and make your commitment to better cybersecurity a truly year-round endeavor.
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