Malware, ransomware, spoofing, and pfishing. If you don’t know what these things are, and the extreme damage they can do to your organization, you may not know that October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month. Sponsored by the National Cyber Security Division (NCSD) within the Department of Homeland Security and the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA, a non-profit organization), National Cyber Security Awareness Month encourages vigilance and protection by all computer users. Note the key word—all.

Cyber security isn’t just an IS/IT problem. It’s a business problem, and a significant one at that. Experts believe there is a hacker attack every 39 seconds, affecting one in three Americans each year. Even more staggering, a recent study commissioned by Bromium and presented by Dr. Michael McGuire at RSA, found that the cybercrime economy has grown to a whopping $1.5 trillion dollars in illicit profits annually.

So, what steps have you, or can you, take to better protect your organization from the complicated and ever-changing threats to cyber security?

Aside from basics like using antivirus/antispyware software; keeping your operating systems and applications current; adopting a formal internet/email policy; and training employees in basic cyber security principles, you should make cyber security a key element of your organization’s Continuity of Operations or Emergency Operations Plan (COOP/EOP).

But, don’t just put it in writing. Put it to the test. Consider adding a cyber scenario to your next COOP/EOP