Congressman Jim Langevin who is the co-founder and co-chair of the Congressional Cyber security Caucus, hosted a cyber-security awareness forum along with the Rhode Island State Police Computer Crimes Unit, the State Cyber-security Officer, the Rhode Island American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) and local officers to provide attendees with tips on staying safe when online.
This forum took place on Monday with Langevin starting off by explaining what cyber-security is and described it as an effort on protecting individuals with domestic and foreign cyber-criminals that work online.
He said, “Cyber security is the national security and economic security challenge of the 21st century and will be here for quite some time. Cyber security isn’t only about foreign hackers or foreign individuals involved in the security.”
Langevin went on to talk about the Russian interference in the 2016 elections and claims that even though that was a topic to remain concerned about, cyber-security goes way beyond “nation state attacks on foreigners.”
He even added saying, It runs the gamut from domestic individuals that run a criminal enterprise or just hackers in general that may try to prey on us, all bad actors. Each of us can take steps in order to protect ourselves while we’re online.”
He continued adding ways in which an individual can protect him or her selves saying, “There’s a number of stuff that you can do, such as strong passwords, changing passwords on a regular basis, making sure that you’re downloading the security patches.”
He even invited some speakers to talk on this issue including Mike Steinmetz who is the RI cyber-security officer. He went on to say, “Today, as the congressman mentioned about passwords, patching and backups, I want you to remember that analogy because if you’re not changing your passwords, if you’re not patching your system, your car is outside of Dunkin’ Donuts with the doors open, the keys in it, and the engine running.”
He advised them on strengthening their cyber-security and on staying aware. RI State Police computer crimes unit captain John Alfred concluded saying, “Don’t be too trusting, be skeptical of any emails or phone numbers you don’t recognize, and don’t click hyperlinks. If it looks too good to be true, it’s too good to be true.”