Cyber Security Awareness Month 2023
Ottawa, Ontario, October 3, 2023
This October, the Communications Security Establishment (CSE) and its Get Cyber Safe national public awareness campaign launch Cyber Security Awareness Month (Cyber Month) with the theme “Step up your cyber fitness”.
Cyber fitness is about the ability to identify, react and respond to online threats by taking small and easy steps. This year's Cyber Month incorporates various tips and tools to help keep Canadians digitally safe and maintain their cyber resiliency long after October ends. From basic awareness of cyber threats and best practices, to the most effective tools to defend against cyber criminals, Cyber Month covers it all.
This Cyber Month, organizations and individuals across Canada are encouraged to get involved by using these free resources from Get Cyber Safe. New this year, additional materials are available without themed branding so organizations can tailor their campaigns to their theme of choice.
Throughout the five-week campaign, Cyber Month 2023 will focus on educating Canadians about cyber security best practices and how to maintain them throughout the year. Cyber Month will explore the following weekly themes:
- Week 1: Warmup – The best workouts always begin with a good warmup. We’ll lay the groundwork for the rest of Cyber Month, covering topics like:
- common cyber threats
- tools to keep you safe online
- simple steps to practice getting cyber safe
- Week 2: Account workout – Here’s where the workout really begins. This week, we’ll work up a metaphorical sweat by learning how and why we should:
- use strong and unique passwords and passphrases
- enable multi-factor authentication (MFA)
- avoid phishing and social engineering scams
- Week 3: Learning self-defence – Beat cyber criminals to the punch by defending your devices! This week is about protecting your devices by:
- using a virtual private network (VPN)
- installing anti-virus software
- securing your home Wi-Fi
- Week 4: Maintaining muscle – Staying cyber fit means keeping on top of your security habits. This week, we’ll focus on how you can automate your cyber safety by:
- using a password manager
- enabling automatic updates
- backing up your data
- Week 5: Strength in numbers – Share your motivation with the world! This week, we’ll teach you how to be a coach for your family, friends and coworkers with advice on:
- talking about cyber security with older adults
- teaching kids about cyber threats
- helping your office get cyber safe
Also, on October 24th, as a part of Media Literacy Week, Get Cyber Safe is teaming up with MediaSmarts, to present Discover Online Safety, a workshop for older adults. The goal is to equip them with general cyber security knowledge and practices to create strong passwords, download apps safely and avoid online scams.
With champions across the country helping to spread awareness, Canadians will have all the tools at their fingertips to keep their devices safe and secured, and to flex their cyber security muscles. Cyber security is a shared responsibility, so join us in promoting good online habits by participating in Cyber Month.
“Cyber Security Awareness Month is a chance to show Canadians how easy it can be to implement effective cyber security measures in their every day lives. Cyber security isn’t just for large enterprises to worry about – it affects everyone and makes Canada’s digital spaces safer. Whether it is brushing up on basics they know or learning something new along the way, I encourage all Canadians to implement and share what they’ve learned through Get Cyber Safe’s Cyber Month campaign.”
– The Honourable Bill Blair, Minister of National Defence
“While the work we do to keep Canada and Canadians safe from cyber threats isn’t always easy, the tools and strategies for the average Canadian to stay cyber safe are simple and effective. Cyber Month aims to raise our collective cyber security awareness now and for the year to come. Knowledge is the first step, and if we all band together and implement that knowledge, Canada as a whole will be better protected against cyber attacks.”
– Sami Khoury, Head, Canadian Centre for Cyber Security
Cyber Month is an internationally recognized campaign held each October to inform people of the importance of cyber security.
The Communications Security Establishment (CSE) leads the Get Cyber Safe national public awareness campaign. It delivers key information via its website and various social media channels so Canadians and small-to-medium organizations can help protect their digital landscape and be safe online.
Get Cyber Safe is the lead for Cyber Security Awareness Month in Canada.
Get Cyber Safe was established with the simple, but important mission of keeping Canadians safe online.
The Get Cyber Safe website offers Canadians important information and tools so they can stay cyber safe in all aspects of their lives. With information for everyone from youth, parents and older adults to small businesses, Get Cyber Safe has Canadians’ cyber security needs covered. The website also contains assessment tools that Canadians can use to improve their cyber security habits.
The Canadian Centre for Cyber Security is Canada’s authority on cyber security. With the Cyber Centre as the single unified source of expert advice, guidance, services, and support on cyber security for government, critical infrastructure owners and operations, the private sector and the public, Canadians have a clear and trusted place to turn to for cyber security issues.
The Get Cyber Safe Awareness Tracking Survey from 2022 demonstrated that Canadians continue to face cyber threats.
- 1 in 4 Canadians feel they are not prepared to face cyber threats, primarily because they feel one can never really be protected online.
- 1 in 4 Canadians say they have been the victim of a virus, spyware, or malware on their computer.
- 2 in 5 Canadians have looked up information about types of cyber security threats or how to tell if an email is a scam.
For more information (media only) please contact:
CSE Media Relations
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