This week sees the start of National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM), and we’re excited to participate. Motorola Solutions is dedicated to providing cybersecurity knowledge year-round to help public safety agencies and enterprise companies better understand the evolving threat landscape and risks of cyber threats. As an NCSAM Champion, we’ll be sharing additional resources throughout the month of October, including blogs on passwords, patching and phishing.
In this blog, we’ll discuss how you can take advantage of a new cyber threat intelligence sharing initiative for public safety, as well as new state and local government cybersecurity grants. You’ll also find details about our cybersecurity presence at the upcoming International Association of Chiefs of Police conference.
What Is Cybersecurity Awareness Month?
National Cybersecurity Awareness Month began in 2004. This annual awareness and education initiative is co-led by the National Cyber Security Alliance and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency (CISA) of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. As a collaborative effort between government and industry to raise awareness about online safety, it’s supported by hundreds of Champion organizations.
This year’s theme is “See Yourself in Cyber.” It focuses on how you can stay safe online by following some basic cybersecurity guidelines. With new cyber threats constantly emerging, it’s important to understand your role in protecting not only your personal data and accounts against them, but your mission-critical systems, too.
Understand Cyber Risks to Mission-Critical Systems
While public safety agencies are busy adopting new technology to better meet the demands and needs of the citizens they serve, cyber criminals are trying equally hard to find ways to disrupt their operations, steal sensitive data and compromise communications.
For example, CISA recently published a new guide on cyber risks to Land Mobile Radio (LMR) systems. First responders rely on LMR systems for instant, reliable and secure push-to-talk communications. The evolution of LMR networks and other mission-critical systems from analog to digital has brought many technical advancements. However, it has also made them more susceptible to cyber threats.
Understanding the methods and motivations of threat actors is crucial to developing a proactive program to defend against attacks against these systems. Getting that level of insight, though, requires cybersecurity experts familiar with the threat actors targeting agencies, as well as the knowledge to make sound recommendations on how to act on that information.
Join Our Public Safety Threat Intelligence Webinar
Cyber intelligence groups focused on specific industries, including Information Sharing and Analysis Centers (ISACs) and Information Sharing and Analysis Organizations (ISAOs), have proven to be effective at identifying and mitigating threats in other sectors.
Until now, though, there hasn’t been an ISAO that public safety agencies could turn to for actionable threat intelligence specific to them and guidance on how to best use it. To address this gap, Motorola Solutions recently established the Public Safety Threat Alliance (PSTA) as an ISAO focused specifically on cyber threats to public safety.
As part of our Cybersecurity Awareness Month activities, we’re hosting a webinar on October 25 on “The Value of Shared Cyber Threat Intelligence.” We’ll discuss the top threats to public safety, how threat intelligence can help you defend against them and how to apply for a free PSTA membership.
Apply for State and Local Cybersecurity Grants Now
October is also the perfect time to get started on your application for the State and Local Cybersecurity Grant Program (SLCGP). With $185 million available, the program is designed to provide state, local, and territorial governments with critical funding to address cybersecurity risks and threats.
Our SLCGP executive summary details the in’s and out’s of the grant program. Applications are due by November 15, but we advise starting the process as soon as possible. We’ve partnered with the experts at GovGrantsHelp to assist you with your application. This is an excellent way to fund cybersecurity projects to protect your organization and the communities you serve.
Meet Our Cybersecurity Team at IACP
In addition to all of the other activities we have planned for Cybersecurity Awareness Month, Motorola Solutions will have a large presence at the upcoming International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) conference October 15-18 in Dallas, TX.
If you’re attending, we invite you to stop by booth 4607 to learn more about the PSTA and our cybersecurity services. We’ll also be offering demos of our ActiveEye Managed Detection and Response (MDR) platform. While you’re at the conference, be sure to catch our presentation on “The Ransomware Paradigm” to learn how these attacks are affecting law enforcement agencies and how you can reduce the impact.
As Cybersecurity Awareness Month kicks off, it’s the perfect time to evaluate your organization’s people, processes and technology for cybersecurity strengths and weaknesses, as well as your personal habits, to see where and how they can be improved. It’s important to remember that it’s no longer a matter of if, but when, a cyber attack will occur, and that there’s no such thing as a closed system anymore.
The good news is that there are resources like the PSTA and cybersecurity grants available for public safety. Motorola Solutions’ cybersecurity experts are here to help your agency or organization be aware and prepared, too, and to provide you with the products, services and resources you need to better protect your mission.