During October, the U.S. Army observes National Cyber Security Awareness Month -- it is a dedicated period of time to focus on the Army's communications and practices to ensure our networks remain safe and secure.

The cyber threat to our Army and our Nation has become pervasive and increasingly sophisticated. There is an inherent risk to our forces, our Soldiers and our communities. Adversaries constantly probe and attempt to exploit our networks, seeking information that is personal in nature such as personally identifiable information, and operational in nature to access, exploit and impact our military capabilities.

Compliance with information security policy, directives and instructions by users is of the foundation of our defense against adversaries in cyberspace. Success in cyber operations is a team effort and we depend on your awareness of the cyber threat and commitment to right action.

This means you are our first line of defense! Each Soldier, Army civilian and contractor has a vital role in ensuring mission accomplishment, while keeping our Soldiers and systems safe when connecting online. You are accountable for everything you do in cyberspace.

This month, take the time to learn on how to improve cybersecurity in your organizations, recognizing that enhanced security begins with our individual awareness and commitment.

When connecting on line, remember to "Stop, Think and Connect":

Stop: Before using the Internet or tactical communications systems, take time to understand the risks and learn to spot potential problems.

Think: Watch for warning signs and consider how your actions could affect the safety of yourself, your unit, and your family.

Connect: Use the Internet and our mission command networks with greater confidence, knowing all steps were taken to safeguard the team and our efforts.

Remember that all actions in cyberspace can be tracked by third parties and that even actions that seem harmless can expose you, your unit and the mission to the threats from our adversaries and criminals. Reporting misuse and suspected violations to your chain of command is critical to our protection.

The Army team is counting on you to act responsibly and report misuse or suspect activity in cyberspace to your chain of command. By dedicating ourselves to increased online security during National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, it helps is stay Army Strong.

Related Links:

Army Criminal Investigation Command -- "CID cyber tips: Protecting your online identity" article

Department of Homeland Security -- National Cyber Security Awareness Month

Federal Trade Commission (Identity Theft)

Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3), which is and FBI-NW3C Partnership