Get the most out of your computing environment by following personal security practices and suggestions related to passwords and email attachments.
Stay Cyber Secure When Working Remotely
As work routines change, cyber security habits should also change. To stay secure when working remotely, remember the following:
Keep Your Home Computer Cyber Secure
For all personally owned computers and devices:
Strong passwords are just as important on the home computer and devices as they are on work computers and devices. Do not use names, favorite colors, or reuse passwords for home devices.
Stay “click aware.” It is easy to forget cybersecurity best practices when away from the office. The best strategy is to remain vigilant and skeptical of all unsolicited emails, text messages, social media chats, and attachments.
When in doubt—don’t click.
You are the first line of defense against cyber attacks.
Mobile Device Cybersecurity
Mobile device cyber attacks are on the rise, so you need to make sure your mobile device is secure.
Follow these tips on mobile device cybersecurity:
Disable Bluetooth audio discovery. Cybercriminals are on the lookout for Bluetooth signals that they can hack and use to connect to mobile devices.
Turn off auto-connect for wireless connections. Never connect to an open or public Wi-Fi network automatically. In fact, the best practice is to never connect to public Wi-Fi that is not password-protected.
If your mobile device support these features, use fingerprint security or visual face authentication. Enable the highest level of security and authentication possible on your mobile devices. Make sure each mobile device you own is protected by a
password that is unique to the device.
Make sure you have the latest versions of all apps and operating systems. Install all updates. These are typically released to fix known security weaknesses and to protect your device from cyber threats.
Be text message aware, just like you are click aware. Do not respond to text messages from people you do not know. Do not respond to unsolicited text messages from companies or organizations.
Be aware of data leakage. Data leakage is the unauthorized transmission of data from within a vendor or organization to an external destination or recipient. Do not authorize unlimited app permissions and access. Only give apps the minimum
access required. Make certain that you never install apps that aren’t necessary. You should also periodically review the app on your device and remove apps that you no longer use or don't recognize.
Remember: never leave your devices unattended, lock your devices after use, and do not let a stranger use your mobile device.
To Protect Your Password
Please see our Password Tips and Best Practices page for any information regarding password security tips, best password practices, before and after changing your password, and troubleshooting password issues.
Even though a number of methods are used to protect you from becoming infected, new virus threats continue to be an issue, particularly with email attachments. The IUP email server blocks some attachment types (see Email Attachment Filtering) that are known to spread viruses. You should still exercise extreme caution when receiving email with attachments, even from people you know. Most viruses “spoof” or “fake” the sender’s email address, making it look like the message is from someone you know. If you weren’t expecting an attachment, consult with the sender before opening it, or simply delete it. When in doubt, don’t open it.
Other Safety Measures
One other step in keeping your office computer safe is logging off each day, but leaving your PC on so that it receives any necessary security patches or virus updates during the overnight hours.
Also, if you are going to be away from your computer, you can lock it to prevent someone else from using your account. In Windows, you can lock your computer by pressing Ctrl-Alt-Del simultaneously, and click on “Lock Computer.” You can unlock it when
you return by pressing Ctrl-Alt-Del again and entering the password you used to log on to the computer.
You can also use the Windows screen saver to lock your computer automatically after a period of inactivity. To do this:
More Information on PC Security Practices
The US Computer Emergency Response Team offers extremely valuable information regarding PC security practices. Please take a moment to review these US-Cert websites to aid in protecting your PC and yourself.
Cyber Security Tip ST04-002
Cyber Security Tip ST04-003