Press Release

Uniting to raise awareness on Cyber Threats: European Cybersecurity Month 2021

Today kicks off the European Union’s 9th annual European Cybersecurity Month (ECSM), promoting online security among citizens.

Published on September 30, 2021

   

The annual cybersecurity awareness campaign is coordinated by the European Union Agency for Cybersecurity (ENISA) and is supported by the European Commission, EU Member States, Europol, the European Central Bank, European Free Trade Association (EFTA) countries and more than 300 partners from the public and private sector. The month-long campaign promotes up-to-date cybersecurity recommendations to build trust in online services and support citizens in protecting their personal, financial and professional data online.

Margrethe Vestager, Executive Vice-President for a Europe Fit for the Digital Age, said: “We will not use technology if we don’t trust it; and trust comes from feeling safe. That’s why cybersecurity is really central to our digitalisation, and to the use of technology. Especially nowadays when due to the pandemic we have been doing so many things online: working, learning, shopping, and more. By adopting good cybersecurity habits, we are building a safe and secure digital life.

European Vice-President for Promoting our European Way of Life, Margaritis Schinas, said: “Cyber-attacks put at risk our businesses, our critical infrastructures, our data, the functioning of our democracies. Cyber criminals exploit the slightest vulnerability in our digital environment. The European Cybersecurity Month campaign aims at helping everyone acquire the necessary skills to shield ourselves and our way of life against cyber threats. The campaign’s motto “Think Before U Click” is especially this year more relevant than ever”.

EU Agency for Cybersecurity Executive Director, Juhan Lepassaar said: “The European Cybersecurity Month campaign this year is bringing EU citizens the information to use in their everyday lives and provide tips to protect themselves from cybersecurity threats. We are uniting with Member States and EU institutions to advance awareness of these threats and to build a trusted and cyber secure Europe.”

The COVID-19 pandemic has underlined the importance of cybersecurity. Now, more than ever, education on digital security is key for citizens to identify risks and react effectively to cyber threats.

Each year, for the entire month of October, the ECSM brings together EU citizens, Member States, the European Commission, EU bodies, and governmental organisations, the private sector and academia to promote healthy cybersecurity habits under the motto ‘Think Before U Click’. Online activities, including trainings, conferences, quizzes, presentations and national campaigns, across Europe, and beyond, are held to boost awareness of cybersecurity risks and share the up-to-date guidelines and ways to mitigate them.

This year’s ESCM campaign will again address security issues surrounding the digitalisation of everyday life, accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Encouraging people to ‘Think Before U Click’, the 2021 campaign presents two cybersecurity themes to help EU citizens recognise and prepare for cyber threats.

The first theme centres around ‘Being Cyber Secure From Home’ by providing tips on how one can remain cyber secure when doing online transactions, communicating, working or studying online. Advice will be provided on good cyber hygiene for everyday practices online.

The second theme provides ‘First Aid’ guidelines of what to do in case of a cyber incident. The goal of this theme is to encourage citizens to have a heightened awareness of the most common cyber threats and to provide advice on how to react in case one falls victim of online shopping frauds, when their credit card and/or bank account has been compromised and when their social media account has been hacked. Real-life stories of victims will be shared in the form of interviews and videos.

The official website of the ECSM campaign is cybersecuritymonth.eu. The website acts as a ‘hub’ of cybersecurity information and includes a page to register activities related to awareness raising open to the public, and dedicated Member State campaign material in each local language (all 24 official EU languages are represented) as welll as the visual guidelines of the campaign for download. The ECSM also features a cybersecurity quiz for users to test their knowledge, and an interactive map of participating countries, giving information on services available in each country to report and get advice when one falls victim of a cyberattack.

Video Messages from the European Commission

Use the playlist player or the links below to watch all video messages:

EC Vice-President Margrethe Vestager

EC Vice-President Margaritis Schinas

EC Commissioner Johannes Hahn

ENISA Executive Director Juhan Lepassaar

Head of CERT-EU Saad Kadhi

EC Director-General Mario Campolargo

About the European Cybersecurity Month (ECSM)

The European Cybersecurity Month (ECSM) is the European Union’s annual campaign dedicated to promoting cybersecurity among citizens and organisations, and to providing up-to-date digital security information through awareness raising and the sharing of good practices. Each year, for the entire month of October, hundreds of activities take place across Europe, including conferences, workshops, trainings, webinars, presentations, online quizzes and more, to provide resources for citizens to learn more about protecting themselves online. The ECSM is coordinated by the European Union Agency for Cybersecurity (ENISA) and supported by The European Commission, Europol, The European Central Bank and EU Member States, EFTA countries, and more than 300 partners (governments, universities, think tanks, NGOs, professional associations, private sector businesses) from Europe, and beyond. Please visit cybersecuritymonth.eu/ @CyberSecMonth.

About the ECSM 2021

The ECSM 2021 campaign will continue with the same slogan from last year, ‘Think Before U Click!’ with hashtag #ThinkB4UClick. The general tagline, ‘Cybersecurity is a Shared Responsibility’ will also remain in 2021.

‘Think Before U Click’

Follow the ECSM campaign on Twitter @CyberSecMonth with hashtags #CyberSecMonth and #ThinkB4Uclick, and on Facebook @CyberSecMonthEU

More information on the ECSM can be found at cybersecuritymonth.eu.

Media Toolkit (includes branded materials, videos, infographics, etc.)

Contact

For questions related to the press and interviews, please contact press (at) enisa.europa.eu.

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