National Cyber Security Awareness Month

National Cyber Security Awareness Month

Cyber Security Awareness Planning Toolkit

October is known as National Cyber Security Awareness Month, or NCSAM. Organized and ran by the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA), October is dedicated to creating awareness about cyber security. To help you and your organization make the most of this October, SANS Security Awareness has created the NCSAM Planning Toolkit. This kit contains everything you need for a high-impact October, to include a planning matrix on what to do and when, communications templates, and resources such as newsletters, posters, tips and other materials. This kit is designed to work on its own or supplement anything you may already have planned. Simply pick and chose whatever resources or events you want to use. If you have any questions or suggestions on this community resource, please contact us at sth-community@sans.org.

Where To Start

Start with the Planning Matrix below, this gives you a high level overview of what you can do each week and when. Each week of October has a specific theme determined by NCSA with our materials mapped to each weekly theme. The key we have learned to a successful security awareness month is effective communication, so make sure you take your communications team out to lunch before October. Some additional key points and resources.

  • Consider becoming a NCSA Champion, a free program that NCSA sponsors giving your organization recognition for your efforts and access to more resources. Or consider joining and use the resources from the STOP | THINK | CONNECT program.
  • For OUCH! newsletters, remember you can find more editions and multiple translations in over twenty languages at the OUCH! Archives Site.

#NCSAM Planning Matrix

Resource Description Notes
WEEK 0 Preparing for National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM)
Wed, Sep 27 Email template Announcing upcoming activities for NCSAM
Optional Planning Template Optional Activities Optional activities that you can use to replace any of the other ones listed below.
Optional 2017 Security Awareness Report Use this report to get the leadership support you need to make your October and overall Awareness Program successful, to include getting new staff. Use this report to get the support you need from leadership, including new staff.
WEEK 1 STOP. THINK. CONNECT.: Simple Steps to Online Safety Staying safe and secure online is our shared responsibility. Here is easy-to-follow, actionable advice for everyone.
Mon, Oct 2 Email template Announce activities for that week
Tue, Oct 3 OUCH! Newsletter Four Steps to Staying Secure You can distribute this newsletter digitally to your staff or print and distribute physical copies.
Wed, Oct 4 Poster Creating a Cyber Secure Home You can distribute this poster digitally to your staff, display them on TV or digital monitors or print and distribute physical copies.
Thr, Oct 5 Lunch-n-Learn Presentation / Webcast Securing Your Kids These are materials you can use to present your own lunch-n-learn event to staff on how they can secure their kids / family online. This is a great way to generate interest for your environment and engage people throughout your organization.
Fri, Oct 6 Video - RSA Workshop on Securing Kids Top Three Threats Facing Kids You can link to this site from your own internal portal or distribute the link to this staff via email or other means.
WEEK 2 Cybersecurity in the Workplace Is Everyone's Business Whatever your place of business, creating a culture of cybersecurity from the breakroom to the board room is essential and a shared responsibility among all employees.
Mon, 9 Oct Email template Announce activities for that week
Tue, 10 Oct OUCH! Newsletter CEO Fraud You can distribute this newsletter digitally to your staff or print and distribute physical copies. This newsletter has been modified with the date removed.
Wed, 11 Oct Poster Don't Get Hooked You can distribute this poster digitally to your staff, display them on TV or digital monitors or print and distribute physical copies.
Thr, 12 Oct Guest Speaker Guest Speaker Generate excitement and buzz for your event by bringing in a guest speaker, such as someone from the FBI, Secret Service, a vendor, Infragard, your security team or industry recognized experts.
Fri, 13 Oct Online Resource Tip of the Day Program Link to the SANS Tip of the Day program so your staff can gain a daily reminder on steps to take to protect themselves at work and at home.
WEEK 3 Today's Predictions for Tomorrow's Internet With the explosion of digital interconnectivity, it is critical to explore everyone's role in protecting our cyber ecosystem.
Mon, 16 Oct Email template Announce activities for that week
Tue, 17 Oct OUCH! Newsletter Passphrases You can distribute this newsletter digitally to your staff or print and distribute physical copies. We selected this topic as strong passwords are one of the most effective means to secure any device.
Wed, 18 Oct Planning Template Mobile Device Check-up Setup a booth where employees can bring their mobile devices and ask questions on how to secure them. Also an excellent method to collect metrics.
Thr, Oct 19 Video of the Month Malware Malware, such as Ransomware, continues to be one of the biggest challenges most systems and devices face today.
Fri, 20 Oct Poster You Are a Target You can distribute this poster digitally to your staff, display them on TV or digital monitors or print and distribute physical copies.
WEEK 4 The Internet Wants You: Consider a Career in Cybersecurity Growing the next generation of a skilled cybersecurity workforce - as well as training those already in the workforce - is a starting point to building stronger defenses.
Mon, 23 Oct Email Template Announce activities for that week
Tue, 24 Oct Online Assessment Cybersecurity Aptitude Assessment Employees / staff can take this free assessment to determine if cybersecurity would be a good career for them.
Wed, 25 Oct Cyber Aces Online Training Platform Great introductory website for anyone wanting to start a career in cyber security, to include free online training of cyber security fundamentals.
Thr, 26 Oct Holiday Hack Challenge Hacking Challenge An annual hacking challenge with multiple levels to test and teach people various hacking / cybesecurity skills.
Fri, 27 Oct Women's and Veteran's Cyber Academy Cybersecurity programs for Women and Veterans Programs to enable women and veterans to start a career in cybersecurity.