Communications and Information Technology Minister Amy Adams has announced the beginning of New Zealand’s first Cybersecurity Awareness Week.
The initiative, being held at the same time as Australia’s Cyber Security Awareness Week, has been developed by Netsafe in partnership with the Government.
The New Zealand Cybersecurity Strategy, released back in June 2011, identified raising the cybersecurity awareness of individuals and small businesses as one of its three main priority areas.
“Cyber security is becoming increasingly important for New Zealanders, businesses and government. Cyber intrusions have the potential to impact on the reliability of critical infrastructure, government services, and the economy,” Ms Adams says.
“It’s important that we make sure that New Zealanders are aware of what the dangers are and take the right precautions to protect themselves against potential cyber security threats.”
Ms Adams says there are some basic things people can do to improve their cyber security. “Having a good anti-virus programme, proper password protection, ensuring that important data is backed-up, and securing wireless connections will make a big difference.”
According to the Minister’s website, more than 2000 New Zealanders are affected by cyber crime every day in the form of computer viruses and malware, credit card fraud, online scams, phishing and identity theft. It is estimated that cybercrime cost New Zealand about $625 million in 2011.
New Zealanders wishing to learn more about cybersafety are being encouraged to visit Netsafe, a website and organisation supported by New Zealand’s Ministry of Education that promotes the safe and responsible use of online technologies.
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