Vulnerability is the Issue – Vigilance is the Key!



Security Awareness Week (SAW) held from February 8 to 12, is a great opportunity to promote security at work.

Vigilance is the Key… You may have seen these words or heard them several times over the past year. It’s the Director General Defence Security’s (DGDS) motto, used in many of its presentations, briefings and promotional material.

But what does Vigilance mean exactly?
Vigilance is “the action or state of keeping a careful watch for possible danger or difficulties”. As a Defence Team member, this means being security-conscious and aware of your surroundings at all times. In other words, when we’re vigilant, we can better detect vulnerabilities and take precautions to avoid them.

Let’s face it, the world we live in has changed, and Canada must adapt to this new reality. Whether we refer to the recent terrorist events in Burkina Faso or the cyber-attack on the Pentagon last summer or our own insider threat, Canada, as much as any other country, is vulnerable to numerous forms of attacks. We have no choice but to do everything in our power to ensure Defence remains secure and resilient; from daily actions to wider defence strategies.

Security is not meant to make life more complicated. It’s meant to protect you, your loved ones and our country. When tempted to cut corners with security procedures to save time or impress your boss, think twice. Remember that your actions could seriously compromise the security of the organization, the safety of its people, and beyond.

Although SAW is only one week, everyone must foster a security minded culture every day! For more information and resources, contact your unit security supervisor/ information system security officer, or go to the DGDS and Defence Team Websites – links below.

Five quick security tips to make you more security conscious:

  1. Not a security practitioner? You still have security responsibilities.
    • Security is everyone’s business!
    • Be familiar with the National Defence Security Orders and Directives. They will
      help you better understand what your roles and responsibilities are when it comes to
  2. Leaving your workstation? A clean desk approach is the way to go.
    • Lock your screen: Windows Command + L or Control+Alt+Del+Enter.
    • Store sensitive information and personal valuables in its appropriate secure
  3. Don’t be a target…ever!
    • Hide your building pass when leaving your place of work.
    • Protect your digital identity.
    • Do not reveal too many details about yourself and
      your work on social media.
  4. Shh! Tighten your lips in public.
    • While on the bus, in a taxi or in any public places, be careful not to let
      sensitive information slip other people may be listening to your conversation.
    • Even when inside DND/CAF facilities, be mindful of what you reveal in public
      as other people may not have the need-to-know.
  5. See something? Say something.
    • Challenge unknown individuals in your work area. You may approach them
      with a question like: “May I help you?”
    • Report suspicious activities, security violations, and breaches to your chain of
      command or security services.

Security: Vulnerability is the Issue – Vigilance is the Key!

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