NCC joins US Homeland Security in cyber security awareness

Prof Umar Danbatta, NCC Executive Vice Chairman
Photo: Chronicle NG

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) said on Tuesday it would participate in National Cyber Security Awareness Month this October to be organised by the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

According to a statement on the commission’s website, the programme is an opportunity to raise awareness about the importance of cyber security and to equip the Nigerian public with the tools and resources they need to stay safe.

The commission said that the awareness programme was a collaborative effort between the DHS and some private partners, which includes the National Cyber Security Alliance.

READ: Must know about National Cyber Security Awareness Month

It said that the event was to raise awareness about the importance of cyber security and individual cyber hygiene.

“Each week in October is dedicated to a specific cyber security theme with corresponding messaging to offer opportunity for government and industry to be involved in cyber security activities most relevant to them.

“The commission believes strongly in this mission and as a partner in the Department of Homeland Security’s `Stop -Think. Connect’ campaign, NCC is committed to promoting online safety for everyone,” it said.

NCC urged every Nigerian to take steps during the campaign to create a safer Internet, adding that even small actions could make a huge difference in defending the public from cyber threats.

The commission also gave some simple tips that everyone could follow to keep themselves, their identities, and their information safe online.

It advised Nigerians to set strong passwords, adding that passwords should be made long and complex, and changed regularly and not be shared with anyone.

The commission urged Nigerians to secure their most sensitive accounts by using multi-factor authentication to keep their accounts more secure when available.

According to NCC, all personal information should be treated like money.

“Information about you such as your purchase history and location has value; so be cautious about how your information is collected by apps and websites.

“Keep a clean machine by regularly updating the software on your Internet-connected devices, including Personal Computers (PCs) Smartphones and Tablets.

“This is to reduce the risk of infection from malware – software that is intended to damage or disable computers and computer systems.

“Maintain an open dialogue by talking with your family, friends, and community about internet safety. With technology always changing, make the online safety conversation an ongoing and evolving conversation as well.

“Limit what you share by controlling and limiting who can see your information online by checking the privacy and security settings on your accounts and apps,” it further advised.

NCC also urged Nigerians not to believe everything they read and to be cautious about what they received online -“if it sounds too good to be true, then it probably is”.

“When in doubt, throw it out; if you see a suspicious link in an email, tweet, social media post, or online advertising, it’s best to delete it or, if appropriate, mark it as junk.”

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