October is Cyber Security Awareness Month!
This year is the 11th anniversary of National Cyber Security Awareness Month, a collaborative effort created between government and industry to guarantee everyone has the resources needed to stay safe online.
The online world has become a very important part of our everyday life. We work, learn, plan and play online all through the day and the actions that we take, whether we are connected to the Internet or not, often impact the whole online community. The campaign refers to Cybersecurity as “the mechanism that maximized our ability to grow commerce, communications, community and content in a connected world.”
The Internet is a resource that we all share. Everyone has the responsibility of securing the networks they use, as well as their portion of the cyberspace; it is also a shared responsibility to take actions to ensure cyber security and to promote these actions. If we each make an effort to guarantee the safety of the Internet, it will have a positive impact for everyone.
This October, the RIT Information Security Office encourages you to review your online safety practices, take precautions and spread the word! Help others understand the consequences of their actions and behaviors online, so that they too can enjoy the Internet safely. Cyber security is a matter that affects everyone. Do your part to make cyberspace safer!
This year, RIT is again a proud champion of NCSAM, and as a part of our shared responsibility to promote online safety for everyone, we share with you the 2014 National Cyber Security Awareness Campaign STOP.THINK.CONNECT, that is dedicated to promoting cybersecurity practices for everyone.
Practice digital self-defense: protect yourself and everyone else by following these simple tips:
Keep a Clean Machine.
- Keep security software current: Having the latest security software, web browser, and operating system are the best defenses against viruses, malware, and other online threats.
- Automate software updates: Many software programs will automatically connect and update to defend against known risks. Turn on automatic updates if that’s an option available.
- Protect all devices that connect to the Internet: Smart phones, gaming systems, and other web‐enabled devices also need protection from viruses and malware.
- Plug & scan: USB sticks and other external devices can be infected by viruses and malware. Use your security software to scan them.
Protect Your Personal Information.
- Secure your accounts: Ask for protection beyond passwords. Many account providers now offer two-factor authentication, an additional way for you to verify who you are before you conduct business on that site.
- Use a passphrase: Create a passphrase by choosing a short phrase, changing the capitalization of some of the letters, replacing some with numerical and symbolic substitutions and purposefully misspelling or abbreviating some words. For more information on how to create a secure password go to Creating Strong Passwords.
- Unique account, unique password: Separate passwords for every account helps to thwart cybercriminals.
- Write it down and keep it safe: Everyone can forget a password. Use a password safe such as LastPass to store your passwords.
- Own your online presence: When available, set the privacy and security settings on social media to your comfort level for information sharing. It’s ok to limit how and with whom you share information.
Connect with Care.
- When in doubt, throw it out: Links in email, tweets, posts, and online advertising are often the way cybercriminals compromise your computer. If it looks suspicious, even if you know the source, it’s best to delete or if appropriate, mark as junk email.
- Get savvy about Wi‐Fi hotspots: Limit the type of business you conduct and adjust the security settings on your device to limit who can access your machine.
- Protect your $$: When banking and shopping, check to be sure the sites is security enabled. Look for web addresses with “https://” or “shttp://”, which means the site takes extra measures to help secure your information. “Http://” is not secure.
Be Web Wise.
- Stay current. Keep pace with new ways to stay safe online. Check trusted websites for the latest information, and share with friends, family, and colleagues and encourage them to be web wise.
- Think before you act: Be wary of communications that urge you to act immediately, offers something that sounds too good to be true, or asks for personal information.
- Back it up: Protect your valuable work, music, photos, and other digital information by making a digital copy and storing it safely.
Be a Good Online Citizen.
- Safer for me means more secure for all: What you do online has the potential to affect everyone – at home, at work and around the world. Practicing good online habits benefits the global digital community.
- Help the authorities fight cybercrime: Report stolen finances or identities and other cybercrime to http://www.ic3.gov (Internet Crime Complaint Center), the Federal Trade Commission at http://www.onguardonline.gov/file‐complaint.
RIT is a proud champion of NCSAM