Hikvision Senior Cybersecurity Director Offers Tips to Stay Safe & Reduce Vulnerabilities for National Cybersecurity Awareness Month (NCSAM)
The 17th annual National Cybersecurity Awareness Month (NCSAM) kicked off last week on October 1, aiming to help raise awareness and help Americans stay cybersecure. To facilitate the goal of raising awareness, Hikvision senior director of cybersecurity, Chuck Davis, provides insights below on vulnerabilities and tips to stay safe.
The 2020 NCSAM theme is “Do Your Part. #BeCyberSmart” and “encourages individuals and organizations to own their role in protecting their part of cyberspace, stressing personal accountability and the importance of taking proactive steps to enhance cybersecurity,” according to the website.
Read below to learn more about vulnerabilities.
What are Vulnerabilities?
“Vulnerabilities are a topic that I speak about frequently and that is often misunderstood. I thought it would make for an easy and informative blog, explaining vulnerabilities at a level where the average computer user can understand the topic,” said Davis, in this Hikvision blog.
A cybersecurity vulnerability is a weakness in software that, when exploited, can give an attacker the means to do something malicious or unauthorized.
Vulnerabilities affect our everyday lives, even though most of us don’t think about them on a daily basis. In part two of Davis’ vulnerability blog, he said “We are all using unpatched, vulnerable computers. It’s just not part of our daily concerns, and it shouldn’t be. However, we need to be aware that vulnerabilities exist in all computers and take defensive action.” He added that: “All computers have vulnerabilities. With very few exceptions, this is a reasonable assumption. Additionally, all IoT devices are computers so all IoT devices have vulnerabilities.”
Automatic updates are routine for our smartphone and home computers. Apple, Microsoft and Google routinely push software updates to these devices every month. Automatic updates are an essential part of good security hygiene to keep your systems and network secure.
Some devices, many on your home network, do not automatically update. For example, if you find your home router does not update automatically, find one that will.
In his vulnerabilities part two blog, Davis said: “Unlike your smartphone and personal computer, many home routers do not have the ability to receive automatic updates and patches for known vulnerabilities. It is certainly inconvenient that this is the one device that is protecting your home network from regular Internet attacks and the only way that it will be patched is if you, the owner, checks the website of the manufacturer of the router to see if there is an update. If so, you have to manually download and install that update. Did anyone tell you this? No, and as a result, there are countless numbers of vulnerable routers that are directly connected to the Internet and vulnerable to an attack. Check if your router updates automatically, if not, it’s probably time to get a new router.”
Hikvision has an extensive catalog of blogs on trending cybersecurity topics. Simply visit our cybersecurity blog link here and learn more tips to help you stay cybersecure.