October is Cyber-Security Awareness Month

Cyber SecurityToday US Department of Homeland Security has announced that October has been declared Cyber-Security Awareness Month. At the same time, Internet and computer security firm McAfee released a study documenting executive management’s lack of awareness of cyber-vulnerabilities in their own business data centers and web hosting facilities.

The theme for Cyber-Security Awareness Month is “Our Shared Responsibility” and “Protect Yourself Before You Connect Yourself” by listing some simple steps everyone can to take to prevent cyber-space threats from overwhelming the country and the world. These steps fall in the categories of:

– ways to safeguard information and devices under your purview

– approaches to take when responding to cyber-threats

– relationship of the individual to critical national cyber-infrastructure

The focus is acknowledging that improvement in the area of computer security is now an absolute requirement for everyone.

On the other side of cyber-security awareness, a latest study from McAfee shows what most people have feared about. McAfee and the Gabriel Consulting Group confirms that executive managers of IT departments in enterprises are  guilty of  a serious disconnect between their understanding and perception of what security they think is in place verses the cyber-security

Just 22% of the participant IT managers reports that their executive management is aware of the readiness measure in place to combat cyber-borne-threats. Cloud computing and virtualization, both mainstays of web hosting functions, are not given the particular attention needed to implement customized security measures,

Only 22% of the IT managers surveyed report that their executive management is fully aware of the preparedness measures in place to combat cyber-threats. Cloud computing and virtualization, both mainstream web hosting functions, are not given the due attention required to implement tailor made security measures, although more than 50% IT managers agree that measures for these two hosting functions must be treated different than the same old computer security — over 40% IT managers said that they were using same security measures for virtual computing as they use of physical data center security.

But, these stats do indicate that IT function is aware of the problem, over 70% of the IT managers report uneasiness and skepticism over the overall security in public cloud. But, even more, the common feeling among these IT managers is that their executive management sees cyber-security as reactive to actual incidents rather than preventive. And they judge their own company’s reactive response to be inadequate — over 40% says day-to-day security does not met their company’s own documented standards.

Take a look at your own company and decide whether this month should be dedicated to Cyber-Security Awareness — or Unawareness.

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