America’s digital infrastructure is critical to laying the foundation for U.S. economic prosperity, government efficiency, and national security, and therefore all citizens must defend it, President Barack Obama told the nation last week in his proclamation, kicking off National Cyber Security Awareness Month.
The president said all Americans must understand they have a responsibility to secure the digital infrastructure and play an active role in safeguarding the cyber networks they use every day.
“America relies on our digital infrastructure daily, and protecting this strategic asset is a national security priority,” he wrote. “My administration is committed to advancing both the security of our informational infrastructure and the cutting-edge research and development necessary to meet the digital challenges of our time.”
The IT infrastructure, he continued, penetrates into almost every facet of the United States. While citizens perceive the Internet as a way to exchange messages and ideas and to stay in touch with friends, it also controls vast networks essential for American prosperity, Obama wrote.
Computers not only keep track of trillions of dollars in bank transactions worldwide, but they also control the transportation system, from enabling safe air travel to aiding operation of trains and subways, the president added.
“We stand at a transformational moment in history, when our technologically interconnected world presents both immense promise and potential risks,“ Obama said in his proclamation. “The same technology that provides new opportunities for economic growth and the free exchange of information around the world also makes possible new threats.”
The seventh national cybersecurity awareness campaign, designated for the whole month of October, provides an opportunity to learn more about the importance of cybersecurity. In this effort, the Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Trade Commission have highlighted basic cybersecurity tips every computer user should adopt, including using security software tools, backing up important files, and protecting children online.