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National Cyber Security Awareness Month: How to stay safe online

October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month and faculty expert Chris Simmons shares tips for staying safe online.

Office of Public Relations & Communications  | 

Logo for National Cyber Security Awareness month

According to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, 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.

National Cyber Security Awareness Month helps to bring awareness to the public about how to maintain online safety. Chris Simmons, assistant professor of computer science and information security in Lipscomb’s College of Computing & Technology, not only prepares students to practice good online safety but also devotes much of his time and research to the latest trends, tips and developments in the field. 

Simmons and several computing and technology students prepared the article below with tips on how to stay safe online. 

Head shot of Chris Simmons

Chris Simmons

by Paige Weber, Will Tidwell and Chris Simmons, Ph.D.

It’s October and you are preparing for the most terrifying night of the year – Halloween. Little do you know, there is something much more real, much more sinister that you should be worried about. They are watching your every move at school, at work, at home waiting for your most vulnerable state to pounce. What’s this monster’s name? Unauthorized network attacks.

Luckily, there are ways to defend against this monster and that’s the goal of Cyber Security Month. The purpose of Cybersecurity Awareness Month is to make more people aware of the simple things you can do to keep yourself from being attacked online.  

This year’s theme has three distinct parts: Own it, Secure it, Protect it.  This theme is focused on encouraging personal accountability and proactive behavior in security best practices, digital privacy, and drawing attention to careers in cybersecurity. According to StaySafeOnline, the theme this year is the following:

Own IT

Secure IT

Protect IT

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