Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano today joined President Obama, Commerce Secretary Gary Locke and White House Cybersecurity Coordinator Howard Schmidt to highlight the Obama Administration’s continued commitment to working closely with businesses, community-based organizations, governments at all levels and the American public to enhance America’s cybersecurity.

Secretary Napolitano also announced the winners of DHS’ National Cybersecurity Awareness Challenge—which called on members of the public and private sector companies to develop creative and innovative ways to enhance awareness of the importance of cybersecurity and safeguard America’s computer systems and networks from attacks.

“Everyone has a stake in cybersecurity, and everyone has a role to play in keeping our networks safe,” said Secretary Napolitano. “The winners of the Cybersecurity Awareness Challenge are being recognized for their unique, innovative ideas to raise public awareness about one of our nation’s most pressing security threats.”

The National Cybersecurity Awareness Challenge, which Secretary Napolitano announced in March, received more than 80 proposals, from which seven were selected and recognized at the White House ceremony today. The winning proposals will help inform the National Cybersecurity Awareness Campaign.

Led by DHS, the National Cybersecurity Awareness Campaign is designed to engage the American public, the private sector and state and local governments in efforts to guard against cyber threats and communicate strategies for the public to help keep themselves, their families and communities safer online.

The Campaign will kick off in October 2010, in conjunction with National Cybersecurity Awareness Month.

2010 Cyber Challenge Categories and Winners

Best Iconic and Overall Structure – Deloitte “Think Before You Click”

The Best Iconic and Overall Structure submission was Deloitte for their Cybersecurity call-to-action and “Think Before You Click” campaign. In addition to proposing creative messaging and tag lines, innovative marketing strategies and calls to action, Deloitte proposed a symbolic icon to help drive awareness and recognition of the campaign for adults and young adults, as well as a character to drive cyber awareness with kids.

Best Local/community Plan – eCity San Diego and MyMaine Privacy

For the Best Local/Community Plan, Securing Our eCity San Diego and MyMainePrivacy were both selected as winners.Both proposals offered innovated strategies for grassroots collaborative approaches with state and local government, public and private sector, and the academic community through their online classroom style trainings.

Most Creative – Beekeeper Group and LegalNetWORKs “Trot Against Bots”

For Most Creative, the submission from Beekeeper Group and LegalNetWORKS for their “Trot Against Bots” awareness 5K was selected. The strategy acknowledges that planned road races by their very nature close down city streets for a period of a few hours, and proposes working with local officials to organize a 5K in a city that would illustrate how a single runner (symbolizing a botnet) may not shut down traffic, but a group can (vehicle traffic would symbolize Internet traffic).

Best Individual Plan – Melissa Short “Cybersecurity Starts Here”

For the Best Individual Plan, Melissa Short, from Roanoke, VA, was selected for her “Cybersecurity Starts Here” campaign. Included in her proposal is the creation of a cybersecurity awareness portal and a Cybersecurity Ambassador Program, both of which will be integrated into the national Campaign.

Best Educational plan – Penn State “CyberLink Games”

Penn State’s proposal was selected as the Best Educational Plan, for their CyberLink Games, which are aimed at improving Internet security. There are two games—CyberLink Duo helps players understand how society views cybersecurity risk and CyberLink Solo helps to educate players on the latest information from experts on cybersecurity threats.

Best Publicity and Marketing – CISCO “Cybersecurity is Everyone’s Responsibility”

Cisco Systems’ proposal was selected as the Best Publicity and Marketing plan for their “Cybersecurity is Everyone’s Responsibility” campaign. An overarching theme of the National Cybersecurity Awareness Campaign is creating a balance between Internet safety as a personal responsibility and a shared responsibility. The awareness campaign Cisco proposed aligns with this goal by creating an educational cybersecurity portal and a cybersecurity “IQ challenge,” and utilizing print, radio, TV and online advertisements to drive awareness of these programs.