Category Archives: Middlebury Community Interest

Improved Filtering of SPAM and Phishing Email

ITS has begun enabling new, proactive anti-spam and anti-phishing email filters intended to improve the filtering of unsolicited and unwanted messages, by leveraging external reputation-based lists of email servers that have been flagged for sending spam and/or malicious email.

We’ve had the new filters in “Tag” mode since October 2014, so we’re confident that they are accurate and we’ll be closely monitoring incoming mail queues during the days after the change. Still, there is a possibility that someone trying to sending you email will have their message blocked, if their email servers have been flagged for sending spam and/or malicious email. The sender, in such cases, will receive an email advising them that their message could not be delivered.

If you encounter such as scenario, (i.e. a legitimate sender is trying to email you, but the message is being blocked by Middlebury’s email servers), or you have noticed legitimate messages recently having been incorrectly tagged as [SPAM?], please contact the ITS Help Desk at and we will help you identify and resolve the issue.

General questions about this change may be directed to

Windows 10: What’s Happening?


With Microsoft offering free Windows 10 upgrades to current owners of Windows 7 and 8, Information Technology Services (ITS) has received questions about this new operating system and our plans for the future.  ITS currently recommends that individuals do not install Windows 10 if they are prompted to do so on a college-owned machine.  Until thorough testing of Windows 10 functionality with College resources has been completed, ITS will continue to install and support Windows 7 on college-owned computers.  Windows 10 will be made available on campus computers later on, after any significant issues are resolved and important supporting documentation has been updated.

As we put Windows 10 through its paces, our observations, known issues, and training resources will be gathered for convenient access.  Visit http://go/win10 for the latest information.

Interested in a peek at what lies ahead?  Check out this brief course, Windows 10 New Features (~ 40 minutes).

Course Hub Upgrades, Tuesday (MIIS) and Thursday (Midd)

This week we will be upgrading the Course Hub sites from Drupal 6 to Drupal 7 before the beginning of the fall semesters. These upgrades will cause the Course Hub sites to be offline for approximately 2-3 hours while the database and configuration are upgraded.

The planned schedule is as follows:

  • Tuesday, August 18th from 8am – 11am EDT (5am – 8am PDT) –
  • Thursday, August 20th from 7am – 10am EDT (4am – 7am PDT) –

During these upgrades, direct access to Moodle, WordPress, SANSSpace, or other curricular tools will still work however new course spaces will not be able to be provisioned until the upgrades complete.

Bombay Print Server Retires Monday, August 3

Middlebury College is retiring the Bombay print server on August 3, 2015, as it is incompatible with our current 64-bit operating systems.  Bombay has been replaced by a new print server named Walnut that has all of the same print queues on it.

ITS has worked with the majority of people who were connecting to the old server but if you have been away from campus you may experience an interruption in printing services until you move from Bombay to Walnut printers.   If needed, refer to the steps below to restore printing.  If you have any questions or need further assistance, please contact the Helpdesk at 802.443.2200 or via email to

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Security Notice: Typosquatting

Middlebury Information Security received information that fraudulent emails are being sent from a malicious domain, “”, to businesses that might provide equipment and supplies to Middlebury College.

The suspicious emails are crafted such that they appear to come from actual Middlebury College employees, though the contact information provided includes incorrect telephone numbers and email addresses.

Note that suspected bad actors are using a typosquatting technique – there are two R’s in “”, and Middlebury’s domain name ends in .edu, rather than .org.   Those details, however, are perhaps an easy thing to miss, especially at a quick glance.     ​

Efforts are underway to takedown the domain, and to suspend the domain holder’s email service.

Please contact with questions.

Security Notification: Ransomware Delivered Through Phishing Attacks

A year ago the Internet saw a rash of malware known as ransomware. This malicious form of cyber attack is known for infecting a computer and encrypting a drive. The victim is then unable to recover their data until paying a ransom to the attacker. Middlebury, like many other institutions was not immune to this form of attack.

A week ago the FBI announced a new variant on a common form of these attacks known as CryptoWall. This form of ransomware is known to have four methods of infecting a computer.

  • Phishing: the attacker may lure a victim into downloading an infected attachment through a phishing campaign and thereby compromising the drive on their system.
  • Phishing: the attacker lures the victim into clicking on a link to a malicious web site where the victim unknowingly downloads the malicious software onto their system and compromises their drive.
  • Infected ad: the attacker posts and infected ad on a website which a user might click thereby causing the download of malicious software.
  • Compromised website: the attacker compromises a website so when a user visits the website they unknowingly download malicious software and compromise their system.

According to the FBI, by far the most common method of attack is phishing, particularly with attachments in the message.

What you can do to protect yourself:

  • Never open attachments or click links in emails that you do not recognize or trust.
  • Know what a phishing attack is and how to spot one. visit or
  • If you think you have fallen for a phish change your password. then call x2200
  • If you believe you system is compromised, unplug it from the power and the network. Shut it down immediately. Do not worry about saving your work. then call x2200.
  • Backup your data routinely. If you save your data to Middfiles or your home directory it will be backed up automatically.
  • Never disable your antivirus software.
  • Send any suspect emails to
  • Only download software from known vendor sites.
  • Don’t click on ads in web sites. Visit vendor websites directly.