NIU Springboard offers Cyber Security webinar

Published: Tuesday, Oct. 22, 2013 5:30 a.m.CDT

In honor of National Cyber Security Awareness Month, NIU Springboard will present a four-part webinar series for small business owners and managers.

The sessions will help entrepreneurs understand the risks facing their systems and then show them how to use tools, policies and procedures to keep their data and systems safe.

Sessions range in cost from $5 to $39. A discount is available for those who register for the entire series. Online registration is available at www.niu.edu/springboard.

According to Luanne Mayorga, an NIU Outreach associate focusing on business and workforce development, these webinars couldn’t come at a better time.

“It is critical for small business owners to understand the real online threats facing their companies and the steps they need to take to safeguard data for themselves and their customers.”

A recent survey of small business owners by the National Cyber Security Alliance and Symantec found that 73 percent of small to medium businesses say a safe and trusted Internet is critical to their success and 77 percent say a strong cybersecurity and online safety posture is good for their company’s brand. Yet 83 percent of the small business owners surveyed had no formal cybersecurity plan.

Organizers of NIU’s Cyber Security webinars hope to prevent losses to northern Illinois businesses by providing what Luanne Mayorga calls “relevant, actionable information that owners and managers can apply to their businesses right away.”

The webinars will be hosted by Raimund K. Ege, an associate professor in the department of computer science at Northern Illinois University. He is the creator of the Cyber Security graduate certificate program at NIU. Ege has more than 25 years of experience working with businesses and universities on information security solutions.

The webinar schedule is:

Part 1: Cyber Threats and Your Bottom Line: An Overview of Cyber Security; 8 a.m. Oct. 25

Part 2: Defense Strategies Against Cyber Threats; 8 a.m. Nov. 8

Part 3: Beyond the Firewall: Tools to Protect Your Business; 8 a.m. Nov. 22

Part 4: Policies and Procedures to Keep Your Business Safe; 8 a.m. Dec. 7

The Cyber Security Webinar Series is just one of the many ways that NIU is strengthening ties with the business community. NIU Outreach recently launched Springboard, an online portal through which local enterprises can access business resources from the university and its partners.

Springboard includes a directory to all the opportunities provided by NIU’s colleges and faculty experts and will help businesses connect with NIU’s students for internships and career opportunities. News of important events and links to government and local agencies providing critical services to businesses will be posted as well.

The first cybersecurity webinar is at a special invitational price of $5 so that attendees can learn more about the critical issues that can impact their enterprises. Attendees who register for the entire series will receive a discounted rate.

More information about the sessions, speakers and registration is available at www.niu.edu/springboard.

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