San Diego, Calif. – National University is proud to participate in Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM), a nationwide effort during the month of October that is promoted by the Department of Homeland Security to highlight the importance of cybersecurity in our communities and provide tools and resources to stay safe online.
Technology continues to evolve and advance through many aspects of daily life, so it is critical to use Internet-connected devices in safe and secure ways. Many conveniences such as online shopping, banking and communicating on social networks can expose vulnerabilities for fraud and identity theft. In addition, everyday “smart” objects including phones, computers, fitness trackers, cars, thermostats and even coffee pots are connected to the internet. These devices offer tremendous benefits, but they also pose various privacy and security challenges because they collect personal information about the user which could potentially be accessed by others.
It’s easier than one may think to practice good cybersecurity every day. Even small actions can make a huge difference in defending from cyber threats. Here are some tips everyone can follow to keep themselves, their identities, and their information safer online:
- Set strong passwords. Make them long and complex, change them regularly, and don’t share them with anyone, especially on the most sensitive accounts, like email or bank accounts. When it is available, use multi-factor authentication to keep accounts more secure.
- Treat personal information like money. Personal information, such as purchase history and location, has value. Read privacy policies and know what information an app, account or device will collect. Enable strict security and privacy settings to control and limit who can see personal information online.
- Keep a clean machine. Regularly update the software on Internet-connected devices, including PCs, smartphones, and tablets, to reduce the risk of infection from malware.
- Don’t believe everything you read. Be cautious about what is received in inboxes or read online—if it sounds too good to be true, then it probably is. Only open emails and attachments from known senders.
- When in doubt, throw it out. If there is a suspicious link in an email, tweet, social media post, or online advertising, it’s best to delete it or, if appropriate, mark it as junk. Be sure to report it to the IT department at work or DHS website.
The number of large-scale data breaches and cyber attacks continue to rise year after year, creating an increasing need for educated and dedicated cyber professionals to protect individuals, businesses, and the country from cyber threats. A study by the Center for Cyber Safety and Education estimates there will be a shortage of 1.8 million information security workers by 2022.
To address the nationwide demand for cybersecurity professionals, National University’s School of Engineering and Computing offers both a Bachelor of Science Degree Program in Cybersecurity and a Master of Science in Cybersecurity and Information Assurance. For these programs, National University is recognized as a Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education by the National Security Agency and Department of Homeland Security. It is one of just six designated centers in California and the first and only in San Diego to receive this prestigious recognition. The programs, which are offered online and onsite are designed for students with various backgrounds, not just technical backgrounds, who are interested in a cybersecurity career. Students have the opportunity to gain real-world experience through hands-on labs, internships and research projects with local small businesses.
Since technology is embedded in everyday life, there are so many career paths that utilize these skills, such as law enforcement, health care, information technology and human resources to name a few that are offered by National University.
For additional tips on staying safer online this month visit the Department of Homeland Security website.
About National University
Founded in 1971, National University is among the largest, private, nonprofit universities in California. With more than 150,000 alumni, National University is the flagship institution of the National University System. National University is dedicated to making lifelong learning opportunities accessible, challenging, and relevant to a diverse population of students. Four schools and two colleges – the College of Letters and Sciences; the Sanford College of Education; the School of Business and Management; the School of Engineering and Computing; the School of Health and Human Services; and the School of Professional Studies – offer more than 100 graduate and undergraduate degrees and 23 teacher credentials. Programs are offered at locations throughout California and across the nation, and are also available online. National University is headquartered in La Jolla, California. http://www.nu.edu/