National Cyber Security Alliance Encourages Digital Citizens to Better Understand How to Manage Their Privacy

Jan 07, 2016, 09:05 ET from National Cyber Security Alliance

WASHINGTON, Jan. 7, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- As our digital lives become ever-more connected, many are left wondering what happens to the vast amounts of personal data floating around in cyberspace. Increasingly, consumers must protect their personal information and learn to better manage their privacy. Similarly, to meet the needs and expectations of their customers, businesses must be transparent about how they collect, use and share data and be vigilant about protecting this valuable information. The National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA), the nation's leading non-profit promoting cybersecurity, is expanding its STOP.THINK.CONNECT. campaign to include privacy awareness. The campaign is designed to inspire consumers to own their online presence and educate organizations on why privacy is good for business.

Data Privacy Day is the signature event of NCSA's year-round, privacy awareness campaign and is centered on the theme of "Respecting Privacy, Safeguarding Data and Enabling Trust." It is led by NCSA in North America and held annually on January 28.

"Data Privacy Day and NCSA's efforts to educate all digital citizens to be safer and more secure online are intended to inspire everyone to own their online presence with simple, actionable steps," said Michael Kaiser, NCSA's executive director. "To build a culture of privacy awareness and greater customer engagement, NCSA also urges businesses to clearly communicate to consumers what information about them is collected, how it is used and what tools are available to control the use of their data. Collecting information about people requires building a high level of trust that the information is adequately protected and only used in appropriate and expected ways."

According to a recent NCSA/Zogby Consumer Survey1, 77 percent of Americans feel it is "extremely" or "very important" that companies have easy-to-understand, accessible information about what personal data is collected about them, how it is used and with whom it is shared. It is clear that consumers want to know more about how the businesses they choose to patronize handle their information. Staying safe online and protecting personal data starts with following the message of STOP. THINK. CONNECT.: take security precautions, think about how your online actions can impact your safety, security or privacy, and enjoy the Internet with greater confidence. Internet users need to adopt a mindset where they are actively engaged in owning their online presence.

1 NCSA/Zogby Consumer Survey. In November 2015, Zogby Analytics was commissioned by NCSA to conduct an online survey of 1,008 adults in the US. Based on a confidence interval of 95%, the margin of error for 1,008 is +/- 3.1 percentage points.

NCSA urges everyone to help protect their online data by utilizing these tips: 

  • Personal info is like money. Value it. Protect it.: Information about you, such as your purchase history or location, has value ‒ just like money. Be thoughtful about who gets that information and how it's collected through apps and websites.
  • Be aware of what's being shared: Set the privacy and security settings on web services and devices to your comfort level for information sharing. It's ok to limit how and with whom you share information.
  • Share with care: Think before posting about yourself and others online. Consider what it reveals, who might see it and how it could be perceived now and in the future.
  • Apply the golden rule online: Post only about others as you would have them post about you. 
  • Keep a clean machine: Keep all software, operating systems (mobile and PC) and apps up to date to protect against data loss from infections and malware.

Be Part of the Greater Effort and Get Involved
NCSA encourages everyone to join our privacy awareness initiative. Our collective voice supports the shared mission and communicates our mutual concern for creating an Internet that respects and protects personal information. It's easy to do and will help spread the word about the importance of data privacy. Empower others to protect their personal online data by tweeting, "I am #PrivacyAware, are you? Learn more at"

Another great way for organizations and individuals to officially show support is to become a Data Privacy Day Champion. Champions represent those dedicated to respecting privacy, safeguarding data and enabling trust. Being a Champion is easy and does not require any financial support. Champions can include companies and organizations of all sizes; schools and school districts; colleges and universities; nonprofits; government organizations and individuals. For more information on how to become a Data Privacy Day 2016 Champion, visit

NCSA's Recommended Privacy Resources
NSCA offers a library of consumer-friendly resources designed to educate the public about protecting their personal information and managing their privacy. Check out the following:

  • The DHS Stop.Think.Connect. Campaign has numerous resources for online safety and security. Visit to view their Social Media Guide and learn ways to keep your information safe and private.
  • How to Get Involved in Data Privacy Day 2016 Infographic: There are many effective ways to get involved in DPD 2016 and NCSA's privacy awareness campaign. To learn more about the day and what you can do to make a difference take a look at our infographic: 
  • Check your privacy settings: Want to view or change your privacy/security settings, but don't know where to find them? NCSA has an easy to use resource with direct links to update your privacy settings on popular devices and online services.
  • Stay #CyberAware While On The Go: Safety Tips for Mobile Devices:
  • Consumer Federation of America's website is easy-to-use, with information about identity theft from CFA and other sources. You can take a quiz to test your ID theft savvy, learn how to protect yourself, and find information about what to do if you become a victim of ID theft. Advice for businesses about data security is also provided. The "Latest News" section keeps you informed about identity theft-related issues.
  • Social networks are designed to help us communicate with friends and family, but some information should remain private and doesn't belong on social media. Here are three helpful tips from the Identity Theft Resource Center on how to protect your privacy while using social media:
  • Mobile applications are changing the way we live. However, many mobile apps collect far more information than you may realize and can put your privacy in danger. The Identity Theft Resource Center has put together some helpful tips on how to protect your privacy while using mobile apps.
  • iKeepSafe's comprehensive privacy matrix provides parents and educators with suggested learning activities and discussion guides for all age groups to help students learn about the consequences of exposing their personal information and to understand the importance of respecting the privacy of others. Because these issues often don't have clear right and wrong answers, it is best to provide students with age-appropriate information and then allow them to determine what best suits their values and comfort levels. 

Data Privacy Day Events
#ChatSTC Twitter Chat: Privacy is Good for Business
Virtual (Twitter Chat)
Jan 20, 2016 at 3 p.m. EST/noon PST
This chat will share tips on how businesses can be #PrivacyAware, better address consumer privacy concerns and practice data stewardship. Use #ChatSTC to join! 

#ChatSTC Twitter Chat: Be #PrivacyAware This Data Privacy Day 
Virtual (Twitter Chat)
Jan 27, 2016 at 3 p.m.EST/noon PST
Join this #ChatSTC to get ready for Data Privacy Day. Get tips for protecting your personal information and owning your online presence, and learn how you can take action in support of the #PrivacyAware effort.

Data Privacy Day Launch – The State of Privacy 
The Pew Charitable Trusts, 901 E Street NW, Americas Room, Washington, DC 
Please note that the event will be streamed live online. Here is the link to join in: 
Jan. 28, 2016 from 10:30 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. (EST)
In 2015, there were pivotal changes regarding privacy in the U.S. and abroad. As the state of privacy continues to evolve rapidly, there is increased awareness and changing expectations from consumers and businesses. In honor of Data Privacy Day and in partnership with the Computers, Privacy and Data Protection Conference, NCSA will host leaders in data privacy from both sides of the Atlantic to initiate a practical and solutions-focused dialogue addressing the current and future state of privacy.   
Registration and additional information here.

Data Privacy Day, Los Angeles
Morrison & Forester, 707 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA
Jan. 28 from 9:00 a.m.6:00 p.m. (PST)
Join Morrison & Foerster, the International Association of Privacy Professionals and the National Cyber Security Alliance for Data Privacy Day in Los Angeles. DPD Los Angeles will bring together privacy luminaries to discuss the fundamental issues facing businesses today. Privacy professionals will examine these questions and provide practical, actionable answers on many critical topics. For example, would you know how to detect a cyber intrusion? Listen and learn from a panel of IT professionals who can explain the anatomy of a hack in plain English. Have you practiced a tabletop exercise yet? Review the steps of an incident response plan with some of the most renowned cybersecurity experts in the industry. Finally, discover new updates in the cybersecurity regulatory landscape; learn how to deal with cloud providers; and identify how your privacy team can improve your company's competitiveness. Registration is available here:

About The National Cyber Security Alliance
The National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) is the nation's leading nonprofit, public-private partnership promoting cybersecurity and privacy education and awareness. NCSA works with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and NCSA's Board of Directors, which include representatives from ADP; AT&T; Bank of America; BlackBerry; Cisco; Comcast Corporation; ESET; Facebook; Google; Intel; Logical Operations; Microsoft; PayPal; PKWARE; RSA, the Security Division of EMC; Raytheon; Symantec; Verizon; and Visa. NCSA' s core efforts include National Cyber Security Awareness Month (October), Data Privacy Day (January 28), and STOP. THINK. CONNECT., the global online safety awareness and education campaign led by NCSA and the Anti Phishing Working Group, with federal government leadership from DHS. For more information on NCSA, please visit

About NCSA's Privacy Awareness Campaign
The National Cyber Security Alliance's (NCSA) privacy awareness campaign is an integral component of STOP. THINK. CONNECT. ‒ the global online safety, security and privacy campaign. Data Privacy Day is the signature event for the campaign and is officially organized by NCSA in North America. Data Privacy Day began in the United States and Canada in January 2008 as an extension of the Data Protection Day celebration in Europe.  Cisco, ESET and TRUSTe are Leading Sponsors of the 2016 privacy awareness campaign. Intel is a Contributing Sponsor. Lockheed Martin and Passcode are Participating Sponsors. Supporting Sponsors include CPDP2016ExpressVPNMozillaPrivacy RefPrivacy SalonPRIVATIZE ME and PRIVATE WiFi. The hashtag for NCSA's privacy campaign efforts is #Privacy Aware.


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SOURCE National Cyber Security Alliance