Kicking off Cyber security Awareness Month at Ixia
October has traditionally been National Cyber Security Awareness Month, or at least it has been since 2003. Established by the US Department of Homeland Security in conjunction with the National Cyber Security Alliance, National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM) is intended to promote tips and best practices to help people better protect themselves.
NCSAM is broken up into 5 Weekly Topics:
- Week 1: Simple Steps for Online Safety
- Week 2: Cyber Security in the Workplace is Everyone’s Business
- Week 3: Today's Predictions for Tomorrow's Internet
- Week 4: Consider a Career in Cyber Security
- Week 5: Protecting Critical Infrastructure
To kick things off, let me start with a very simple, low tech and easy to understand and execute “Simple Step for Online Safety” in line with the theme for Week 1.
This tip is actually very simple:
Post vacation stuff to social media in the past tense.
What I mean by this is that social media is very leaky. You probably don’t know who all your followers are and it is likely that all of your followers are not “friends” who mean you well – and this goes well beyond the typical griefers who always find something negative to comment about, this would people people who use social media to facilitate crime.
So you are going on vacation – this is great. You will probably feel the need to post certain pictures, including hotdog legs:
and probably some sort of pictures of the wonderful dinners you had:
You know, the typical stuff people post to social during vacations.
The only problem is that when you post about how you are hoisting pints in Den Haag or doing hotdog legs in Phuket it means you are not home which means that the phat 65” LG OLED TV and the fancy B&W speakers with the ceramic tweeter things on top that you posted to Instagram earlier are all up for grabs for anyone bold enough to sneak into your back yard and throw a rock through a sliding glass door.
So you want to share with friends and brag a bit – I get that. We all do. The suggestion here is that you just wait until you get home to post some of these wonderful things and don’t let hotdog legs in cyber space make things any easier for thieves in meat space than you have to.