October is here and you know what that means; it is officially National Cybersecurity Awareness Month (NCSAM). While raising awareness about network and data protection is essential for MSPs every hour of every day of the year, that point is particularly important to emphasize for the next 31 days.
Now in its 17th year, CISA and the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) are promoting this year’s theme of “Do Your Part. #BeCyberSmart.” From large corporations to sole entrepreneurs, everyone, and certainly every employee, has a role to play. MSPs have a responsibility, too. Service providers must not only abide by “if you connect it, protect it,” but they must also educate the businesses they work with to create a safer cyber environment.
If you haven’t gotten behind these promotions before, chances are your clients don’t know about NCSAM. Is your organization actively providing cybersecurity or phishing training with customers? Can your clients turn to you for all their data protection needs and questions?
If the answer is no to either of these questions, now is the perfect time to make a change. Consider raising awareness by following some, if not all of the advice below.
1. Promote Cybersecurity Awareness Month
Post the Cybersecurity Awareness Month logo to your website with a link to information on the topic or a dedicated resources page. For more visibility, post a banner in a prominent place on the home page.
Consider writing a blog about this year’s theme and sharing activities that your organization plans to promote good cyber health throughout the month. Not too blog-savvy? That’s okay; another great option is sending out a newsletter highlighting ‘Do Your Part. #BeCyberSmart.’ Use the CISA website to build a template and gain information your clients will find helpful.
2. Host a Virtual Event
Having an online discussion about cybersecurity for your clients, or the local community, is a great way to promote your expertise while helping everyone involved gain a better understanding of online threats. GoToMeeting and Zoom are great platforms for these activities. Set up and promote an online event and securely share the link with registrants. Use PowerPoint to arrange your thoughts and create an appealing presentation that will be easy to follow and entertaining for listeners.
Don’t forget, virtual events do not have to be a one-time occurrence. Record the discussion and share the link or video via your company’s social media streams or in an email. You may capture those who missed the event or would like to watch it again, as well as new prospective audience members who would still like to participate.
3. Conduct Phishing Training
Focus on one of the single most significant threats to individuals and small organizations. An absolute must for phishing-related training is ‘gamifying’ these programs with scoreboards, prizes, or rewards. A simulation is an excellent example. When employees have a way to engage using the lessons they’re actively learning, while having some fun simultaneously, that knowledge will stick.
4. Share Tips
CISA and NCSA have numerous resources for businesses to share with peers and clients. Distribute this critical information via e-newsletter, social media, or your website. These materials don’t have to be just for your clientele; reach out to the community through other social media pages and your local media.
Inject your own advice and voice into the conversation. Don’t just use the information provided by others; share your own expertise and knowledge about cybersecurity gained through years of protecting businesses and end-users.
5. Become a Cyber Champion
Show that your organization is dedicated to making a difference by becoming a leader for the cause during National Cybersecurity Awareness Month. Don’t worry; it’s easy and free. All you have to do is register, and you will receive a toolkit with materials to help your team implement a variety of activities and initiatives.
Get Started Today!
Whether you get started on the first day of October or mid-June, it’s never too late to spread the word on cybersecurity threats and increase awareness. A themed month can help MSPs promote this critical topic, but it’s certainly not the only time to evangelize data protection to clients and your community.
Become a champion using some of the tips above or create your own custom plan. The goal should be to do something well, not merely jump onboard and poorly execute someone else’s plans or ideas.
How is your team promoting and embracing National Cybersecurity Awareness Month? Don’t let a perfect opportunity slip through your hands.