Local View: ‘Secure Our World’ is a cybersecurity call to action – Duluth News Tribune | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #ransomware

Every day we rely on technology for our modern life, from the classroom to the office, from financial transactions to how we travel, and just about everything else in between. And when we need it, we need it to work — safely.

To help make sure our access to technology is secure and uninterrupted, the federal Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency is launching our new program, Secure Our World, which coincides with Cybersecurity Awareness Month. This is a year-round, enduring effort to educate individuals and small to medium-sized businesses about how to stay secure online, and it provides resources to improve cybersecurity habits to increase resilience against cyber threats.

Agency Director Jen Easterly explained it best: “The Secure Our World program includes resources and tools every individual and organization can use to stay safe online by practicing good cyber hygiene. As cyber threats continue to evolve, we encourage everyone to do their part to stay cyber-safe.”

The Secure Our World program focuses on four simple steps everyone can take to stay safe online:

One, use strong passwords that are long, random, and unique to each account, and use a password manager to generate them and save them.

Two, turn on multi-factor authentication for all accounts that offer it. We need more than a password to protect our most important data, including email, financial accounts, and social media.

Three, recognize and report phishing; as we like to say, think before you click! Be cautious of unsolicited emails, texts, or calls asking you for personal information. Resist the urge to click on links and don’t click on links or open attachments from unknown sources.

And four, update software. In fact, enable automatic updates on software so the latest security patches keep your devices continuously protected.

For individuals and families, Secure Our World emphasizes the importance of securing personal accounts, offering guidance on personal-device safety, safe internet-browsing practices, safe social-media usage, and protecting personal information online.

Small and medium-sized businesses face unique challenges, and Secure Our World offers tools and resources that can help boost their cybersecurity defenses and minimize the risk of data breaches or cyber attacks, making not only businesses, but communities, safer.

Tech manufacturers can “secure our world” by implementing security features built in by design. Default settings should have the highest security measures implemented, and individuals can manually bypass security features if they don’t want them. Users should not have to opt-in to necessary security measures to make their products safe to use. Products should be safe for users right out of the box.

Everyone can take steps today to secure our world. Follow us throughout October during

Cybersecurity Awareness Month

for more information on this effort. Visit

to take advantage of our cybersecurity resources and tips. Together we can build a more secure digital world.

Alex Joves is the regional director in Chicago for Region 5 of the federal Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency ( The region covers Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin.

Alex Joves


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