October is our favourite time of year. It’s not the crisp mornings, autumnal colours, or even Halloween that gets us all of a flutter. No, it’s because October is European Cybersecurity Month (ECSM).

What is European cybersecurity month?

ECSM is an annual cybersecurity awareness campaign, coordinated by the European Union Agency for Cybersecurity (ENISA) and the European Commission. It’s supported by all EU member states and more than 300 corporate partners. 

The campaign aims to promote online security among EU citizens. Each year, hundreds of activities such as conferences, workshops and webinars take place across Europe throughout October. From Ljubljana to Lisbon, businesses, governments and NGOs come together to provide the latest cybersecurity information and best practices.

2020’s official slogan is ‘Cybersecurity is a Shared Responsibility’. However, under this broad title, ENISA chooses some relevant themes each year. And this edition’s themes are very close to our heart. 

What are the themes for 2020?

This year’s ESCM campaign tackles security issues surrounding the ‘digitalisation of everyday life.’ In simple terms, that’s the switch many of us have made to working remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic, and the problems it raises. 

Encouraging EU citizens to ‘Think Before U Click’, the 2020 campaign digs into a couple of important themes to help people guard against cyber threats. 

The first theme is ‘Cyber Scams’.  Activities and events will focus on phishing, attacks on business email accounts, and online shopping fraud. The goal is to give everyone the knowledge to identify scams and navigate online life safely. 

The second theme, and the one we’re most excited about, is ‘Digital Skills’. It tackles e-privacy matters such as personal data protection, cyber-bullying and cyber-stalking. Sessions in this category will promote proper cyber hygiene and good online practices. 

We’re particularly pleased about the cyber hygiene element of the ‘Digital Skills’ theme. We’re on a mission to make cyber hygiene part of everyday life. A bit like brushing your teeth or leaving the house with a facemask. 

How can you get involved? 

Getting involved in ECSM 2020 couldn’t be easier. Simply head over to https://www.cybersecuritymonth.eu/ and book yourself onto some of the activities on offer. There’s everything from webinars to workshops and you’re bound to be able to find something to suit your business in your home country. Alternatively, why not join the conversation on social media by searching for the hashtag ‘#cybersecuritymonth’?

Let’s make 2020 the year we all improve our understanding of cybersecurity. 

Looking to improve your cybersecurity but not sure where to begin? Start by getting certified in Cyber Essentials, the UK government scheme that covers all the fundamentals of cyber hygiene.

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