National Cyber Security Awareness Month kicked off on Thursday at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, DC. The event, sponsored by The National Cyber Security Alliance and endorsed by close to 100 organizations (including The New New Internet), brought in notable speakers, particularly the secretary of DHS, Janet Napolitano and Chris Painter of the White House.
The theme of this year’s NCSAM is “Our Shared Responsibility” and is focused on increased education and public awareness of smart practices to increase cyber security. White House Acting Senior Director for Cyber Security, Chris Painter, began the discussions by saying that cyber attacks are “causing substantial harm to our citizens, our businesses, and our government.” He outlined the steps that the White House is taking to help secure the cyber infrastructure. Painter also emphasized that although a “cyber czar” has not been named, the government is still moving to better secure cyberspace. During her presentation, Napolitano revealed that DHS has been authorized by the White House to hire up to 1,000 additional cyber security personnel to help turn DHS into a world class center for cyber security. She also stated that “everyone has a role to play when it comes to cyber security.”