Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center Recognizes State and Local Governments in Best of the Web Contest

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Annual competition highlights outstanding websites that promote cyber security awareness.

Congratulations to the finalists and winners for their efforts in creating and maintaining websites that promote cyber security and help educate users.

Today the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center (MS-ISAC) announced the finalists and winners of its annual Best of the Web Contest. The contest, held in conjunction with national Cyber Security Awareness Month, aims to recognize state and local governments that use their websites to promote cyber security.

The MS-ISAC’s Education and Awareness Workgroup reviewed and judged cyber security websites for all 50 state governments and a number of local governments based upon several criteria including cyber security content, usability, accessibility, and appearance. The goal of the contest is to recognize commendable sites and highlight them as best practices for others to consider when developing or re-designing their own sites.

The MS-ISAC is pleased to announce that West Virginia was selected as the winner in the State Government category and the City of Seattle was selected as the winner in the Local Government category.

West Virginia’s site includes awareness videos containing real-life scenarios of potential cyber risks; Family Links for kids, parents and teachers; and an online incident reporting process for government agencies.

Seattle’s site includes guidance for securing laptops, creating strong passwords, protecting home computers, wireless security, and videos and weekly tips for users.

William Pelgrin, Founder and Chair of the MS-ISAC said: “Providing resources for users about online risks and how to protect themselves is an important layer in a multi-tier approach to strengthening our overall cyber security. Congratulations to the finalists and winners for their efforts in creating and maintaining websites that promote cyber security and help educate users.”

Jim Richards, Chief information Security Officer, State of West Virginia said: “West Virginia has made a commitment to making its web presence user-friendly and meaningful to West Virginians. The Office of Information Security and Controls has made a concerted effort to maintain relevant and current content on its site that may inform site visitors to help them understand more about how they can reduce risk around their online activities.”

Michael Hamilton, Chief Information Security Officer, City of Seattle said: “The City of Seattle is honored to have been recognized for a second year as the outstanding security website in the local government category. Seattle fully supports the goals of the Multi-State ISAC in identifying and disseminating timely information to the community and region, and are very appreciative of this recognition – especially as it comes from that organization.”

The following were finalists in the State Government category:

The following were finalists in the Local Government category:

Richard Reasner, Acting Director of the Office of Michigan Cyber Security said: “Cyber awareness is vital to mitigating the threats that have evolved in cyber space. Michigan is committed to partnering with MS-ISAC and others to make cyber space safe for everyone.”

Doug Young, Chief Information Officer, State of Missouri said: “The State of Missouri is proud to be one of the top seven states recognized by the MS-ISAC as having one of the leading Best of the Web security sites. Missouri is committed to providing assessable online government services and remaining transparent to our citizens. Likewise, protecting the safety and security of highly valuable information has become an increasingly critical mission. Our security team has worked diligently in serving as a guardian of protected government data. Via our portal and our Twitter account, our team has taken this vigilance one step further by promoting proactive cyber security awareness, tips and education to the general public.”

Thomas Smith, Director of the New York State Office of Cyber Security said: “The Office of Cyber Security is proud to have been selected as one of seven finalists in the MS-ISAC’s Best of the Web contest. It is clear from many of the notable cyber attacks of the past year, ranging from breaches at governmental agencies and defense contractors to the compromised social media accounts of celebrities and national media outlets, that individual users play a critical role as the first line of defense against such attacks. We believe that providing comprehensive, accessible information and awareness materials through our web site is one of the most efficient means for us to educate those individual users about staying safe online.”

Stu Davis, Chief Information Officer, State of Ohio said: “Ohio is honored to be selected as one of the finalists by the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center (MS-ISAC) for our Cyber Security Awareness site. Everyone–-Ohio government agencies, businesses and citizens–-has a role in security and privacy. Providing cyber security awareness to our staff and citizens is an integral component of protecting our information infrastructure and a priority for our overall cyber security strategy. Our cyber security website gives people the useful resources needed to prevent and respond to the increasing threats we face every day.”

James MacDougall, Chief Information Security Officer, State of South Carolina said: “As we face new threats each day, one of the most important defenses we have as a state is the ability to work together and safely share information and resources. This Web site plays a key role in these efforts and has proven invaluable as a means of communication. To be recognized is a tremendous honor and I applaud the entire security staff for this well-deserved recognition.”

Kris Rowley, Chief Information Security Officer, State of Vermont said: "The State of Vermont is again honored to be recognized by the MS-ISAC as having a top security web site. Cyber security is one of the fastest growing areas of risks to our state and nation. It is imperative that we teach our citizenry, from children to seniors, the importance of cyber security. Our website is dedicated to promoting cyber security and information sharing. Cyber security is one area where everyone, doing their part, makes an impact on the security of our state and nation."

David Villanueva, Chief Information Security Officer, County of Sacramento said: “Sacramento County uses rigorous safeguards to protect its network, but it is vital that employees are also informed about their responsibility and the steps to protect county data and assets.”

About the MS-ISAC

The MS-ISAC, a division of the national not-for-profit Center for Internet Security, is the focal point for cyber threat prevention, protection, response and recovery for the nation's state, local, territorial and tribal governments. The MS-ISAC 24x7 cyber security operations center provides real-time network monitoring, early cyber threat warnings and advisories, vulnerability identification and mitigation, and incident response. The MS-ISAC coordinates closely with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security through its National Cyber Security Division.


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