Posted Tuesday, May 2nd, 2017


In recent months, we have witnessed a numerous cyber security breaches, targeting business and government, and many of our own Morris county residents have been victims of their own personal security breaches, having their identities stolen and suffering financial and information thefts.Video screen shot of Freeholder Doug Cabana and CCM President Anthony Iacono

To help deal with this growing problem, the Morris County Board of Freeholders and County College of Morris have focused on this issue.

CCM was designated last month as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education. It’s student-led team has worked with business, schools, and government — including running programs for all Morris County government employees —  to offer some easily understandable basics in cyber defense.

One tool is a new Stay Safe in Cyber Space video created by the student team to provide valuable information in some areas where we can all take simple steps to better protect ourselves. Please spend just a few minutes reviewing facts offered in this video. These are basics that anyone can implement to help prevent cyber theft.

CCM is a leader in cyber security education in New Jersey and is the only community college in the state recognized as a certifying institution by the National Security Agency’s Committee on National Security Standards. CCM is the only community college in New Jersey listed as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education by the National Security Agency and Department of Homeland Security. 

“We are extremely proud of the work being done at the CCM Center for Cyber Security, which has done a great job of educating our future cyber security professionals, increasing awareness for students in many other disciplines and preparing the greater Morris County community to be good cyber citizens,’’ said Morris County Freeholder Tom Mastrangelo.

graphic showing a person's finger opening a lock inside a computerMorris County’s Chief Information Officer, John Tugman, suggests that county residents focus on prudent computer management practices for personal or home computers – similar to those that also apply to the management of your office computer.

Use Strong Passwords: A weak password is one that is easily guessed. Do not use the names of family members or pets or favorite sports team. Use a mix of upper and lower case, plus numbers and special characters. Do not use less than 8 characters.

If password memorization is troublesome, use a password manager.

Use different passwords for different services. Since many sites use your e-mail address to login, if the password is compromised on one site, it may pose a threat to the other sites you use.

Keep Personal Computers Current with Software Updates: All software is susceptible to security vulnerabilities, so it is important to keep your system’s software up-to-date with all available vendor patches and updates. Insure the Automatic Update feature is activated. A security patch that requires a 5 minute reboot is much less inconvenient than becoming victim of a cyber-attack that steals your personal information.

Unattended Computer Basics: Never leave your computer unattended in the office without locking it. An unlocked computer is liked an unlocked door of an unattended house. Walking away from your computer for a short period of time i.e. coffee break may seem harmless, but it only takes minutes for someone to access a logged-in computer and compromise sensitive information

Visit the Department of Homeland Security for more cyber security tips.