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County Council focuses on cyber security


Proclamation promotes awareness in the month of October


The Metropolitan King County Council today proclaimed October as Cyber Security Awareness Month in King County and urged citizens to take steps to protect their electronic records.

The proclamation is in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the National Cyber Security Alliance declaration of October as National Cyber Security Awareness Month.

“As we become increasingly dependent on electronic data systems, thieves are becoming increasingly sophisticated in identity theft and online fraud,” said Councilmember Kathy Lambert, who serves on the Cyber Security Task Force for the National Association of Counties. “As stewards of a large number of public records, King County is working on leading the way in assuring the security of our digital data.”

In addition to internal cyber security efforts, King County is promoting the national “Stop.Think.Connect.” campaign with tips to help businesses, organizations and individuals to keep their online data safe and secure. The campaign offers simple tips for using strong passwords and privacy settings online, and advice such as not opening e-mail attachments or links from suspicious sources.

“Technology can protect us from a lot of the bad stuff out there, but this awareness campaign is about our actions online” said King County Chief Information Security and Privacy Officer Ralph Johnson. “If we give out our passwords, place too much personal information on social media pages, or open malicious email attachments - we risk exposing ourselves to the bad guys that want to steal information for a multitude of harmful purposes.”

To reinforce the importance of cyber security this month’s campaign includes the option of taking an online pledge. After the pledge is submitted, participants can print a certificate to display and to remember the key points of online security. Employees of the Department of Information Technology (KCIT) will take the pledge as a group, on October 22, at their all-staff meeting in the Microsoft Auditorium at the downtown public library.

“KCIT employees know the importance of online security,” said King County CIO Bill Kehoe. “But this is a great refresher for anyone who works or plays online. The Internet is a world-wide resource, and we all have to work together to protect our resources.” 


WHEREAS, King County recognizes the vital role that the Internet and information technology play in the lives of their employees and residents; and

WHEREAS, critical community sectors are increasingly reliant on information systems to support financial services, energy, telecommunications, transportation, utilities, health care, and emergency response systems; and

WHEREAS, internet users and the nation’s information infrastructure face an increasing threat of malicious cyber attack, loss of privacy from spyware and adware, and financial and personal privacy losses from electronic identity theft and fraud; and

WHEREAS, that National Association of Counties has established Cyber Security Awareness as a principal focus and encourages county governments to enhance their cyber security efforts and encourage citizens to adopt secure online practices; and

WHEREAS, the “Stop.Think.Connect.” campaign is a national public-private coalition of businesses, nonprofits, and government organizations helping all citizens stay safer and more secure online; and

WHEREAS, maintaining the security of cyberspace is a shared responsibility in which each of us has a critical role, and awareness of computer security essentials will improve the security of King County’s information infrastructure and economy; and

WHEREAS, the King County Department of Information Technology is hosting a Cyber Security Community Conversation on October 22, promoting the Cyber Security Pledge, and distributing cyber security information to county employees; and

WHEREAS, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the National Cyber Security Alliance have declared October as National Cyber Security Awareness Month;

NOW, THEREFORE, we, the Metropolitan King County Council, hereby proclaim the month of October 2012 as


in King County and encourage all employees and citizens to learn about cyber security and put that knowledge into practice in their homes, schools, workplaces, and businesses.

DATED this fifteenth day of October, 2012. 

More information is available at:,

Members of the King County Council join King County Department of Information Technology Director Bill Kehoe (Center)  shortly after the Council declared October Cyber Security Awareness Month in King County.
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