Recognizing that all the technology in the world can’t protect the internet from attacks, the security industry is targeting an education campaign at the weakest link, CNET reports: computer users. It’s the first public service message of its kind in the U.S., and it’s simple: Stop. Think. Connect. Unveiled Oct. 6 at Intel’s headquarters, the campaign is part of Cyber Security Awareness Month, an annual event since October 2001, and was organized by the National Cyber Security Alliance, the Anti-Phishing Working Group, and more than two dozen government agencies and companies. The goal is to get security precautions to become second nature, like looking both ways before crossing a street, covering your mouth when coughing, and washing hands frequently. A security frame of mind needs to be built into the culture of society, starting at the ground level with end users, said Phil Reitinger, deputy undersecretary for the national protection and programs directorate at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Security experts are constantly admonishing people to keep their anti-virus software up to date, but that doesn’t matter if users fall for social engineering phishing attacks, which have become commonplace on the web. Engineers who used to blame end users and complain that “you can’t fix stupid” have come around to realizing that they can’t ignore the human factor, and there is a science to changing peoples’ behavior. Making security easy and understandable will have a larger impact on web security than throwing sophisticated tools at the problem, they acknowledge…

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Laura Ascione

Laura Ascione is the Managing Editor, Content Services at eSchool Media. She is a graduate of the University of Maryland's prestigious Philip Merrill College of Journalism. When she isn't wrangling her two children, Laura enjoys running, photography, home improvement, and rooting for the Terps. Find Laura on Twitter: @eSN_Laura http://twitter.com/eSN_Laura