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September 29 2015

Operation HOPE Joins Homeland Security to Promote National Cyber Security Awareness

Operation HOPE Joins Homeland Security to Promote National Cyber Security Awareness

WASHINGTON, DC – September 30, 2015 – This year, HOPE Coalition America (HCA) joins the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to encourage Americans to – Stop.Think.Connect. – as a part of the campaign to practice safe behavior year-round, including online. As we move from disaster preparedness month in September, HOPE is encouraging everyone to keep safety top of mind by observing National Cyber Security Awareness Month and why cybersecurity matters and how to take steps to be cyber safe.

“Cyberspace and its underlying infrastructure are vulnerable to a wide range of risk stemming from both physical and cyber threats and hazards. Sophisticated cyber actors and nation-states exploit vulnerabilities to steal information and money and are developing capabilities to disrupt, destroy, or threaten the delivery of essential services,” says Oliver Bell Market President, Southern Region and Director of HOPE Coalition America. “It is important to recognize the steps we need to take to identify and deter online dangers. Taking time out to secure your online identity is the first step.”

As a partner with DHS, HOPE Coaltion America, Operation HOPE’s disaster recovery and preparedness division, recognizes another aspect of safety. Formed in response to the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center in 2001, HCA is a national partnership with the Department of Homeland Security and FEMA, focusing on strategies for economic recovery before and after national disasters.

By taking a few steps you can minimize your chances of an incident. Set strong passwords, never click on links in emails from unrecognized sources, do not open attachments or give out personal information are a few ways you can maximize your safety.  The DHS warns us, cybercriminals do not discriminate; they target vulnerable computer systems regardless of whether they are part of a government agency, Fortune 500 company, small business, or belong to a home user.

The Stop.Think.Connect. Campaign is a national public awareness campaign aimed at increasing the understanding of cyber threats and empowering the American public to be safer and more secure online. Cybersecurity is a shared responsibility. We each have to do our part to keep the Internet safe. When we all take simple steps to be safer online, it makes using the Internet a more secure experience for everyone.

In 2009, President Obama recognized the need to increase education and dialogue about cybersecurity. The President thereby issued the Cyberspace Policy Review, which has become the blueprint from which our nation's cybersecurity foundation will transform into an assured and resilient digital infrastructure for the future. As part of this policy review, the Department of Homeland Security was asked to create an ongoing cybersecurity awareness campaign–Stop.Think.Connect.– to help Americans understand the risks that come with being online. The Stop.Think.Connect. campaign launched on October 4, 2010, in conjunction with National Cyber Security Awareness Month.

To learn more about National Cyber Security Awareness Month and how you and your organization can get involved, contact stopthinkconnect@dhs.gov and visit this website later this year for updates and National Cyber Security Awareness Month 2015 event information.

To learn more or get involved in the Campaign, please contact us at stopthinkconnect@dhs.gov.