Throughout the month of October, the EU holds their annual cybersecurity campaign which focuses on promoting cybersecurity among EU citizens and organisations. This is done through various activities including conferences, workshops, training and webinars. 

This year’s campaign is focusing on social engineering, and has the tagline “Be smarter than a hacker.” We all know that humans are often the weakest link when it comes to cybersecurity, and malicious online actors know this. They are able to exploit human weaknesses, such as ignorance or fear, to gain access to confidential information and more. In fact, 74% of breaches in the last year involved a human element, including social engineering. 

This year’s European Cybersecurity Month programme covers all types of social engineering techniques, from phishing to impersonation scams, and aims to help people to identify the tactics used and prevent themselves becoming victims. For example, they highlight three red flags to look out for that could suggest a scam: unexpected requests, unbelievable offers and a sense of urgency created by the hacker.

They also provide content and information tailored to specific users, including businesses.

Activities take place in countries all across the EU and online, so there are plenty of opportunities to improve your cybersecurity knowledge and skills such as a webinar on manipulation through dark patterns in Austria, a social media awareness campaign around identity theft in Spain, and a webinar around best practice for GDPR in IT in Poland.