Security Awareness

October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month. This national campaign’s goal is to increase the public’s awareness of cyber security and cyber crime issues so users can take precautions to avoid these threats on the Internet. 

Cyber Security Awareness Tips for Protecting Kids Online 

Adults and Educators

  • Establish Internet rules for children accessing the Internet.
  • Be informed and involved with your children’s Internet activity.
  • Place the computer in a central location.
  • Be sure your computer has anti-virus software and a firewall installed.
  • Know the cyber space lingo.
  • Use filters and parental control software.
  • Use hard to guess passwords.


  • Always ask for permission from a parent, guardian or teacher before releasing any personal information.
  • Never talk to strangers on the Internet.
  • Tell a trusted adult if you feel uncomfortable about any situation on the Internet.
  • Never go into chat rooms unless you have permission from a parent or guardian.
  • Report any cyber bullying incident to a trusted adult or teacher.
  • Do not click on links that you are not familiar with.
  • Do not download files without permission from an adult or teacher.

* Tips courtesy of the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center

Cyber Security Awareness Tips for Protecting Your Identity Online

Shopping Online

  1. When shopping online verify that the site is secure. The URL should say "https."
  2. Designate one credit card for online purchases to help you monitor your account, and it is easier to report or replace one credit card if your information is stolen online.


  1. Use different password for different online accounts to lessen the likelihood of someone gaining access to all your accounts if your password is compromised.
  2. Choose a password you can remember that is at least 8 characters long with alpha numeric and special characters.
  3. Never use the names of your children, pets or favorite sports teams as your password.
  4. Never use dictionary words in any language as your password.

Phishing Scams

Phishing scams are deceptive and criminal attempts to steal your login credentials, account numbers or other sensitive data.  Phishing scams are the result of e-mails sent out to a wide range of e-mail addresses.  The e-mails appear to be from reputable institutions like your bank, and there is a place to click on a link within the e-mail that will route you to a website that looks legitimate.

  1. Never access your accounts through an e-mail link.
  2. Manually type in the institution’s website and access your account information as necessary.
  3. Delete phishing e-mails, do not respond back to the sender.

Public Wireless Networks

  1. Most public wireless networks (wi-fi) are unsecure and you should use caution when using these networks.
  2. Make sure your computer's firewall is on.
  3. Disable file sharing before connecting to a public wireless network to help protect the data on your computer.

Just Protect Video

The State of Tennessee Treasury Department, Division of Risk Management developed a short (1:53 minutes) cyber security awareness video. Please visit the Risk Management homepage to view the video click here.


Additional Resources 

Act Online Cyber Security Training - Free online training courses for U.S. citizens that are for the general user, technical professionals or business professionals. These courses were developed under a project funded by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center (MS-ISAC) - A collaborative state and local government-focused cyber security entity that is significantly enhancing cyber threat prevention, protection, and response and recovery throughout the U.S.

National Cyber Security Alliance - Partners with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and MS-ISAC to empower and support digital citizens to use the Internet securely and safely, protecting themselves and the cyber infrastructure.

United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT) - Provides response support and defense against cyber attacks for the Federal Civil Executive Branch (.gov) and information sharing and collaboration with state and local government, industry and international partners. Also, provides a way for citizens, businesses, and other institutions to communicate and coordinate directly with the United States government about cyber security.

Wombat Security Technologies "Phil: An Anti-Phishing Training Game" - Anti-Phishing Phil™ is an engaging online game that teaches people how to identify phishing URLs.