Governor Hochul proclaims October 2021 Cyber ​​Security Awareness Month



Governor Kathy Hochul today released a proclamation announcing October 2021 as Cyber ​​Security Awareness Month in New York State. The announcement is part of a committed effort to raise awareness of the importance for all New Yorkers of developing smart cybersecurity practices and safe online habits as we face increasing internet threats. Observed each October, Cyber ​​Security Awareness Month is a nationally recognized collaborative effort to engage and educate the public about security and to provide tools and resources to help them stay safe online.

“As our local, state and federal assets are increasingly compelled to deal with the damage caused by criminal activity online, it is critically important that individuals and institutions focus on good cybersecurity practices. ” Governor Hochul said. “We are educating New Yorkers at all levels of the public and private sectors so that our state can continue to lead the nation in aggressively addressing this evolving threat of the 21st century. “

The theme for the 18th Annual Cyber ​​Security Awareness Month – “Do your part. #BeCyberSmart ”- highlights the growing importance of cybersecurity and encourages individuals and organizations to take action to protect themselves in an increasingly connected world.

“The Homeland Security and Emergency Services Division works with government and critical infrastructure partners to strengthen protections against cyber threats and respond quickly to incidents when they occur.” said Terence J. O’Leary, executive deputy commissioner of the New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services. “However, cybersecurity is everyone’s responsibility. Being able to identify cyberthreats and respond appropriately is essential to protect the personal information they can use to protect the systems and networks on which they rely. . “

“As cyber attacks continue to increase, it is essential for all of us to fill the potential gaps in order to reduce the risk of such attacks” said Acting Superintendent of Financial Services Adrienne A. Harris. “The New York State Department of Financial Services continues to enforce the department’s innovative cybersecurity regulations, the first in the country, to ensure that regulated entities are vigilant against cyber attacks, protecting consumers and consumers. integrity of New York’s financial services industry. “

“In this digital age, cybersecurity is our top priority”, New York State Chief Information Officer Angelo ‘Tony’ Riddick said. “Thanks to the leadership of Governor Hochul and our partners at all levels of government, New York is well prepared to deal with cyber threats. We must all work together and take proactive steps to keep New York City safe.

“Ensuring that each individual invests in protecting their own digital footprint is essential in the interconnected world in which we live”, said Karen Sorady, chief information officer for New York State. “There is a growing dependence on the use of technology in all aspects of our lives and this dependence poses a risk to confidentiality, integrity and availability. Therefore, we all need to understand our role in managing this risk. Cyber ​​Security Awareness Month is a great opportunity to draw attention to good “cyber hygiene” practices that will help users protect their identity, devices and information. “

New York State Police Superintendent Kevin P. Bruen said: “Every day, state police employees, sworn and civilian alike, strive to keep New Yorkers safe online. We want to remind the public that just as you need to be aware of your physical surroundings, you should also be aware of your online presence. Make sure that the sites you shop on are secure, that your computer and electronic devices are up to date with current security software, and that you do not share your password. Also, check your financial statements regularly to make sure you are not a victim of fraud. Together we can prevent future cybercrime. “

Cyber ​​security is a major challenge for all organizations, but can be particularly difficult for businesses that are too small to have a dedicated information security officer and cybersecurity staff. According to a 2019 Verizon Data Breach Investigation report, more than 43% of cyber attacks target small businesses.

The New York State Department of Financial Services, in partnership with the nonprofit Global Cyber ​​Alliance (GCA), provides a free cybersecurity toolkit for small businesses. These resources help small businesses protect themselves and their customers from the growing cyber threat. Areas covered by the free cybersecurity toolkit include identifying hardware and software, updating cyber threat defenses, strengthening passwords and multi-factor authentication, data backup and recovery. and protection of messaging systems.

Free cybersecurity toolbox for small businesses and examples of cybersecurity policies developed by DFS are available on the website DFS website.

This year’s theme motivates individuals and organizations to take up their role in protecting their part of cyberspace. If everyone does their part, by implementing stricter security practices, raising community awareness, educating vulnerable audiences, and training employees, our interconnected world will be safer and more resilient for everyone.

Each week of Cyber ​​Security Awareness Month will revolve around a new topic:

  • Understand and implement basic cyber hygiene, including the importance of strong passphrases, use multi-factor authentication, perform software updates, and back up data.
  • Recognize and report phishing attempts, whether they originate from emails, text messages or chat boxes.
  • Empowering individuals not only to practice safe online behavior, but also to consider joining the mission of securing our online world by pursuing a career in cybersecurity.
  • Make cybersecurity a business priority by ensuring that products and processes are ‘secure by design’ and by encouraging cybersecurity consideration when purchasing new internet-connected devices.

NYS ITS provides the public with a number of free educational resources, such as the Cyber ​​Security Awareness Electronic Toolkit. The toolkit includes posters, calendars, brochures and other cybersecurity-themed content that can be uploaded and shared to help promote and strengthen cybersecurity themes in a practical, informative, entertaining and practical way. usable. The toolkit material can be found on the ITS website at

Along with Cyber ​​Security Awareness Month, NYS ITS CISO is coordinating a statewide Cyber ​​Security Poster Contest for K-12 students. This is a timely opportunity for school teachers to focus on keeping children safe online in a fun and informative way. New York State winners will be featured on the ITS website and entered into the national competition. For more information on the poster competition, please visit

Visit the ITS CISO website at for more information on National Cyber ​​Security Awareness Month, follow us on Twitter at #NYSCyber, and on Facebook at


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