R.I. State Police speaks about cyberattack prevention in Oct.

PROVIDENCE – Among events for National Cyber Security Awareness Month in October, some featured members of the R.I. State Police Computer Crimes Unit are speaking on safety, according to a press release.

“The more time you spend online, the greater your exposure to cyberattack and other risks,” said Col. Ann C. Assumpico, superintendent of the R.I. State Police and director of the R.I. Department of Public Safety.

R.I. State Police Capt. John Alfred, commander of the Rhode Island Joint Cyber Task Force and Fusion Center, notes that studies show 1 out of every 3 Americans already has been the victim of a cyberattack. These attacks occur at home, in schools and on the job.

Members of the Computer Crimes Unit spoke at several cybersecurity awareness events over the past month.

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Alfred also offers the following steps individuals can take to improve their cybersecurity:

  • Protecting devices with up-to-date anti-virus, anti-spyware and anti-phishing software. Keep up with updates.
  • Use strong passwords with upper- and lower-case letters, as well as symbols and numbers. Change them often.
  • Don’t reveal personal data online and make sure security and privacy settings on social media ensure you don’t reveal too much.
  • Turn off location sharing unless an app requires it.
  • Don’t open attachments or emails from people you don’t know.

During October, Rep. James R. Langevin hosted cybersecurity awareness events, one at Coventry Senior Center and one at Community College of Rhode Island in Newport, along with Sen. Louis P. DiPalma, D-Little Compton, and North Providence-based Compass IT Compliance hosted a Cybersecurity Symposium at the Meehan Overlook in North Providence.

Susan Shalhoub is a PBN contributing writer.