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October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month
Friday, October 3, 2014 6:35 AM

October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month, and with all the issues surrounding data breaches in the retail sector, it's a good time to remind everyone to practice safe online habits—not just this month, but throughout the year.

The campaign for National Consumer Protection Week, a coordinated campaign that encourages consumers nationwide to take full advantage of their consumer rights and make better-informed decisions, has provided resources to help, including this video on computer security.

Here are three things you can do as part of your computer security routine:

  1. Use security software—and keep it updated. Well-known companies offer plenty of free options. Set the software to update automatically.
  1. Keep your operating system and web browser up to date. Hackers take advantage of software that doesn't have the latest security updates, so set your operating system and browser to update automatically, too.
  1. Create long, strong, and unique passwords for each account. This one isn't as easy, but it's worth it. You might be tempted to reuse the same password for multiple accounts, but if it's stolen, hackers could gain access to many of your accounts at once.

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National Cyber Security Awareness Month is designed to engage and educate public and private sector partners through events and initiatives with the goal of raising awareness about cybersecurity and increasing the resiliency of the nation in the event of a cyber incident. October 2014 marks the 11th Annual National Cyber Security Awareness Month sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security in cooperation with the National Cyber Security Alliance and the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center