Many people think of the word “infrastructure” and automatically think of a bridge or a road and then push it out of their minds and go about their daily life. But the reality is that our daily lives and the services we rely on are built upon a foundation of critical infrastructure that ranges from the power and water in our homes, to the banks and financial services we use and the transportation networks we travel. Critical infrastructure is what keeps our stores open, emergency services at the ready, and commerce flowing.
While we often take critical infrastructure for granted, it faces a number of constant and evolving threats, including severe weather, terrorism, and cyber attacks. Enhancing the security and resilience of the nation’s critical infrastructure requires a concerted national effort, which is why President Obama has again designated November as Critical Infrastructure Security and Resilience Month. This is a nationwide effort, led by DHS, to raise awareness and reaffirm our commitment to keeping the Nation’s critical infrastructure secure and resilient.
It’s no coincidence that Critical Infrastructure Security and Resilience Month comes on the heels of National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, as much of the nation’s physical infrastructure is intertwined with cyber networks and systems. Safeguarding both the physical and cyber aspects of critical infrastructure is a national priority that requires cooperation at all levels of government and private industry. Managing risks to critical infrastructure involves preparing for all hazards, reinforcing the resilience of our assets and networks, and remaining vigilant and informed. This is a mission to which DHS is committed.
Whether it’s an individual or family thinking about how they prepare for a disruption of critical infrastructure, or a business or industry that needs to take steps to ensure the services they provide are resilient to disruptions, November is a time to remember how much we rely on our nation’s critical infrastructure and ensure that we are as robust as possible.
We all need to play a role in keeping infrastructure strong, secure, and resilient. We can do our part at home, at work, and in our communities by familiarizing ourselves with emergency plans, preparing for disruptions, incorporating basic cyber safety practices, and making sure that if we see something, we say something and report suspicious activities to the appropriate law enforcement.
I encourage you to join us in recognizing the importance of the critical infrastructure that underpins our society and to do your part to help keep it secure and resilient.
To learn more, visit www.dhs.gov/critical-infrastructure-security-and-resilience-month.