42.8 F
Washington D.C.
Wednesday, December 6, 2023

Cybersecurity Awareness Month: Join Us to Confront Today’s Threats

I’ve been tracking how ransomware and other cyber attacks have threatened our critical infrastructure numerous times this year alone.

I am proud to welcome all of our esteemed readers and supporters to Cybersecurity Awareness Month. On this 20th anniversary of 9/11 I am all too aware of the need to protect data, information, and other digital assets. Since that life-altering day, cyber has evolved to be one of the foremost threats to our nation. Read more on where we are in our “State of Cybersecurity” in our 9/11 Commemoration.

I was honored to be asked to lead Homeland Security Today’s efforts to help our community share information and exchange best practices in cybersecurity. As the previous CIO of the Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction Office at the Department of Homeland Security, I’ve been tracking how ransomware and other cyber attacks have threatened our critical infrastructure numerous times this year alone – oil pipelines, water systems, hospitals, and so much more have been attacked successfully and put on the defensive.

It’s time to turn the tables. And it will take all of us to do it.

Over the pandemic we’ve seen that our government seamlessly moved the workforce to a remote operating environment. And with that, new challenges arise for protecting remote systems, mobile devices, and even insider threats.

What we at Homeland Security Today are asking you this year is to help us get ahead of these threats. As a practitioner, expert, leader in our community your ideas and contributions will be what sets us apart and moves us away from constantly playing defense.

We have a unique and exciting opportunity to share what we’ve learned and pivot to face the next challenges facing our enterprises.

During Cybersecurity Awareness Month, I invite you to contribute your experiences, best practices, your advice and your counsel to others in our community so that no matter where they sit – federal, state, tribal, local CIOs, CISOs, administrators, programmers, etc. – all can avoid simple mistakes, or better yet plug a vulnerability or recognize, stop, and thwart an attack.

I look forward to reading your submissions for Cybersecurity Awareness Month this year. Although HSToday focuses much of our editorial attention to cyber during October, I believe you all know what we do throughout the year and invite your continued contributions.

Thank you for considering this and I hope to see your advice and expertise as part of this ongoing mission.

Antonio Villafana

Former Chief Information Officer
Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction
U.S. Department of Homeland Security, 2016-2019

Antonio Villafana
Antonio Villafana
Antonio Villafana most recently served as the Chief Information Officer (CIO) for the DHS Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction (CWMD) Office. Prior to this role, Mr. Villafana served as Deputy Executive Director, for the Enterprise Business Management Office (EBMO) within the DHS Office of the Chief Information Officer. Mr. Villafana provided executive leadership support to the DHS CIO. He also served as Chief Enterprise Architect for the DHS Intelligence Enterprise at the Office of Intelligence and Analysis (I&A). Mr. Villafana’s IT Leadership and strategic thinking was instrumental in the establishment of the Southwest Border (SWB) Border Intelligence Fusion Section (BIFS). Before joining I&A, Antonio served at the Federal Emergency Management Agency as an IT Delivery Manager for a $1 billion Enterprise Application Development contract. Mr. Villafana serves on the Government Technology & Services Coalition FITGovSummit Board of Directors and is a Strategic Advisor to GTSC. He served 10 years with the U.S. Army as a Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical (NBC) specialist and participated in Operation Uphold Democracy (Haiti), Operation Restore Hope (Somalia), and Hurricane Andrew Relief. Antonio graduated from Jacksonville State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science.

Related Articles

- Advertisement -

Latest Articles

Verified by MonsterInsights