The New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness (NJOHSP) reaffirmed its commitment to keep the State cyber safe after Governor Phil Murphy proclaimed October as Cybersecurity Awareness Month on October 2. NJOHSP and its cyber division, the New Jersey Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Cell (NJCCIC), are also participating in National Cybersecurity Awareness Month (NCSAM).
“As many of our daily routines have transitioned online, it has become more important than ever to strengthen our defenses against malicious cyber activity,” said Governor Murphy. “My administration remains committed to securing New Jersey’s vast technological resources that keep our communities fully operational. As the State’s lead agency for cybersecurity, NJOHSP offers several tools to help residents, schools, and businesses shore up their vulnerabilities so they can thwart the latest threats and stay connected.”
Throughout the month, NJOHSP and the NJCCIC will promote best practices alongside partners in the private and public sectors to increase awareness of cyber threats and provide information about how to stay safe online.
“This year has demonstrated the critical role of technology in maintaining normality during a crisis. The increased dependence on online resources and information requires greater cybersecurity awareness,” said Jared M. Maples, Director of the New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness. “The mission of both NJOHSP and the NJCCIC has always been to protect the juncture where physical security and cybersecurity meet, and we maintain that goal this month and beyond.”
The NJCCIC continues to expand its influence and impact on the cybersecurity landscape with a growing membership that currently consists of nearly 11,000 members in 45 states, the District of Columbia, and 50 countries. The NJCCIC contributes to preparedness and response efforts surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, especially as more people have shifted to work-from-home and remote learning environments. Through its updated website and social media platforms, the NJCCIC informs the public of cyber threats and provides guidance on how to avoid and defend against these threats. NJOHSP similarly warns New Jersey residents and visitors of misinformation and disinformation campaigns, specifically those spread online in relation to the pandemic, civil unrest, and the upcoming Presidential election.
“Technology has become an increased necessity in our daily lives and has allowed us to continue working, learning, and staying in touch with loved ones, all while being remote,” said Michael Geraghty, Director of the New Jersey Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Cell. “As such, we each play a crucial role in strengthening our cyber resiliency to continue using technology in a secure way and to prevent cyber incidents. Do your part, #BeCyberSmart.”
NCSAM is a nationwide initiative that continues to raise awareness regarding the importance of cybersecurity in America, ensuring that all people are prepared with the tools and resources they need to be safe and secure online.