(Clearwater, FL) – While this year’s National Cyber Security Awareness Month is coming to an end, KnowBe4 an IT security awareness training firm, recognizes the FBI’s efforts to raise awareness and prevent cybercrime. Cybercrime expert Stu Sjouwerman, founder and CEO of KnowBe4, believes that while October may be ending, cybercrime is prevalent and precautions need to be taken at all times.
The theme for 2012 National Cyber Security Awareness Month was centered around the Internet being a shared resource, and that it is the responsibility of everyone to secure it. The three points of the campaign were:
● STOP: Before you use the Internet, take time to understand the risks, and learn how to spot potential problems.
● THINK: Take a moment to be certain that the path ahead is clear. Watch for warning signs, and consider how your online actions could affect your or your family’s safety.
● CONNECT: Enjoy the Internet with greater confidence, knowing that you’ve taken the right steps to safeguard yourself and your computer.
The FBI provides tips on how to protect against cybercrime and practice the Stop, think, connect method (1):
● Set strong passwords, and don’t share them with anyone.
● Keep a clean machine—your operating system, browser and other critical software are optimized by installing regular updates.
● Be cautious about what you receive or read online—if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
The FBI website also states that because of the interconnectedness of online systems, every American who uses digital technologies at home or in the office can—and must—play a part in cyber security.
“We have repeatedly said that employees are the weakest link to cyberattacks,” commented Sjouwerman. “The FBI is right—we need to properly train people so that they can protect themselves, as well as their businesses, and prevent cyberattacks from happening.”
KnowBe4 believes that there are two things all companies should to do protect themselves, their money and their businesses:
1. Allocate one person to be responsible for cyber security in your company; and
2. Maintain ongoing training.
KnowBe4 Cyberattack Case Study:
● In 2010, the Treasury Credit Union—a financial facility servicing federal employees and the families of the U.S. Treasury Department in Utah—was hacked.
● The criminals infiltrated the bank’s system through a bank employee’s login and password, which was obtained by malicious software via phishing and a virus that was inserted into the computer by a bank employee.
● Approximately 70 wire transfers were made from one of the bank’s own accounts. The transfers were made in low-increment amounts of under $5,000 to money mules, for a total in the low six figures.
● This was accomplished despite the fact that the computer and network were well-protected by antivirus software.
Despite sophisticated security—even in a financial institution—the weakest link proved to be an employee.
KnowBe4 is committed to protecting businesses against cybercrime. Its latest efforts have been accomplished through a partnership with security consultant Kevin Mitnick (‘The World’s Most Wanted Hacker’), wherein they developed Kevin Mitnick Security Training. The training is interactive and web-based, and includes case studies, live demonstration videos and short tests. KnowBe4 uses knowledge of the latest cybercrime tactics in real-time to train its clients’ employees, ranging from defense contractors to hospitals and insurance corporations.
Even though National Cyber Security Awareness Month is ending, the need for protection and awareness is not. In fact, FBI Director Robert Mueller said that “cyber security may well become our highest priority in the years to come” (1). Sjouwerman agrees.
For more information on how KnowBe4 and Kevin Mitnick can protect businesses against cybercrime, visit http://www.knowbe4.com/products/kevin-mitnick-security-awareness-training/.
To view Sjouwerman’s interview on CBS regarding cybercrime, visit
About Stu Sjouwerman and KnowBe4
Stu Sjouwerman is the founder and CEO of KnowBe4, LLC, which provides web-based Internet Security Awareness Training (ISAT) to small and medium-sized enterprises. A data security expert with more than 30 years in the IT industry, Sjouwerman was the co-founder of Inc. 500 company Sunbelt Software, an award-winning anti-malware software company that he and his partner sold to GFI Software in 2010. Realizing that the human element of security was being seriously neglected, Sjouwerman decided to help entrepreneurs tackle cybercrime tactics through advanced security awareness training. He and his colleagues work with companies in many different industries, including highly-regulated fields such as healthcare, finance and insurance. Sjouwerman is the author of four books, with his latest being Cyberheist: The Biggest Financial Threat Facing American Businesses Since the Meltdown of 2008.
(1) FBI. Gov. Accessed October 14, 2012. “National Cyber Security Awareness Month 2012: Are You the Weakest Link?” www.fbi.gov/news/news_blog/national-cyber-security-awareness-month-2012