Monday, October 28, 2019

October is National Cybersecurity Month!

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Own IT. Secure IT. Protect IT. Keep IT up! - October 31 2019

Today is the last day of National Cybersecurity Awareness Month. Don’t be sad. Instead, have fun and learn more! Check IT out:

Terms of Service...hmm what did I just agree to? - October 29 2019

How many free online services do you use on a daily basis? Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, TikTok, Google to name a few? Ever wonder how these companies actually make money? Remember that “terms of service” you thoroughly read and agreed to when signing up for that free service? Yeah, me neither. No one reads the terms of service, but it clearly states how your data is going to be used. Usually, the terms of service states that the company can use your personal data for whatever purpose they see fit. Typically they use your data to sell targeted ads or sell your data to other companies. Learn how to protect your privacy.

VPN 101 - October 25 2019

Use Macalester’s virtual private network (VPN) to improve your security when you connect to public wifi at the airport, coffee shop, hotel or wherever. Our VPN can provide a secure internet connection to keep your data, and the data you have access to, safe. VPN is available for all faculty, staff, and students. Learn more about VPN.

Automatically Backup Your Smartphone and Computer - October 23 2019

If your hard drive dies, your device is lost or hacked, you won’t have any way to get your personal data back. A little planning and preparation will save you time and frustration down the road. Backups provide a safety net in case something happens to your personal device. More about backups.

Encryption. What’s All the Fuss About? - October 17 2019

Encryption is one of the most important security measures in use today. It is used to securely log in to websites, shop online, and protect your devices if they get lost or stolen by encoding the data so it is not readable without a decryption key. There’s more to learn about encryption.

How to Spot an Email Phishing Scam - October 14 2019

Phishing is an attempt to gain personal information by tricking you into thinking that the email came from someone you know. Because most of the email you receive is legitimate, it’s easy to get phished. It’s so common that if you haven’t already been phished, you probably will be at some point. Knowing how to spot a phishing email will help keep your data—and the data you have access to—safe. Main characteristics of a phishing email:
  • Request for immediate response
  • Attachment to download
  • Link to login screen
  • Ask to provide personal info
If you think you were phished, mark the message as spam and contact the ITS Help Desk. Check out How to Spot an Email Phishing Scam for more useful tips.

Run Software Updates - October 10 2019

When your device prompts you to update an application or its operating system, make time to do this ASAP. Failure to act can leave your device and its data vulnerable to hackers. 

Help secure your digital life by regularly installing software updates on your computer, tablet, or smartphone. System vulnerabilities are found on a daily basis and patches are routinely released by developers. Regularly running updates significantly improves your computer's security and lowers your chances of having your system hacked.

Better yet, set your devices to automatically run updates, so you won’t forget.

Keep Your Smartphone Secure - October 8 2019

Smartphones allow you to stay connected no matter where you are. Your whole digital personal and work life may be stored on your phone, so protecting it and your privacy is critical. Smartphones are high value targets for both thieves and cyber criminals. If your mobile device is not running iOS or Android, it is most likely end of life and no longer secure. Check out the FCC’s Ten Steps to Smartphone Security for Apple iOS and Ten Steps to Smartphone Security for Android.

Who Else Knows Your Password? - October 3 2019

Ever wonder if any of your online accounts have been compromised or if your credentials are no longer secure? Well, chances are that one of your accounts has been exposed and its information is on the internet. Using the same password across multiple services only compounds the issue. Check if your account has been compromised.

Passwords Are the Bane of Online Existence - October 1 2019

Welcome to Cybersecurity Awareness Month! Every site or service needs a password and it has to meet what seems like an obtuse level of requirements. On top of that, you need to remember it at a moments notice in order to get your personal or professional work done. This leads to password reuse and endless "I forgot my password" loops. If your social media password is the same as your bank, or your Macalester account, you are at risk of exposing your own data and are putting Macalester at risk. Learn how to simplify your digital life by using a password manager.

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