While we have become accustomed to many aspects of living in the digital age, we can easily make decisions that are the equivalent to opening up a door for a thief to come into our home or workplace. Your personal and professional information is valuable, and for the clearance holder, cybersecurity habits are even more important. We may understand how to lock our physical front door, but how do we lock the virtual door? Cybersecurity is a critical business (and personal) function that puts practices in place that protect systems, networks, and programs from digital attacks.

National Cybersecurity Awareness Month

Despite awareness efforts, like October’s National Cybersecurity Awareness month, cyber threats are still an increasing issue. Education, technologies, and processes have all had an impact on the progress that we have witnessed in cybersecurity. As more measures are adjusted, it is still challenging to keep up with the volume and variety of attacks. Additionally, the human factor in cybersecurity is a critical element. When bombarded with distractions and decisions, people can unknowingly place themselves or their organization at risk.

Pandemic Heightens Cyber Issues

Of course, enter 2020 onto the scene. In a global pandemic, U.S. adversaries are not resting. The current pandemic has heightened the need to revisit cybersecurity measures – especially with the workforce shifting to a work from home status. More vulnerabilities were exposed. While cybersecurity used to be just a subset of IT, as threats grow, it’s clear that it is now a critical business function.

Education is Key in Cybersecurity

Whether you’re a cyber wizard or novice, continual education on the topic is important. With an increased number of devices to track and with so much sensitive data to track, cybersecurity is critical. You may not appreciate all of the extra security measures; however, understanding their functionality and usefulness can help you put them into practice. Things like VPN and two-factor authentication are functionalities that can help ensure privacy and safeguardĀ  data. Additionally, filling the talent gap through various programs and efforts will continue to move the dial forward in how we effectively address the ever-changing cyber threats.

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Jillian Hamilton has worked in a variety of Program Management roles for multiple Federal Government contractors. She has helped manage projects in training and IT. She received her Bachelors degree in Business with an emphasis in Marketing from Penn State University and her MBA from the University of Phoenix.