When you are reading e-mail or browsing online, be on the lookout for suspicious links and deceptive web pages, which are major sources of malware. Also be careful of downloadable files since they can introduce malware. And remember that additional browser plugins and unused applications require additional patching to remain secure. Here are some suggestions to make your day-to-day computing more productive, safe, and secure.
- Keep your software up-to-date. Be sure to install antivirus updates and regularly check for and install updates for any applications or browser plugins you may run on your computer. (e.g., Adobe Flash and Java)
- Be more secure! Don’t enter sensitive or personal information into a URL unless you have verified the address and you have ensured its security by checking that it includes HTTPS.
- When in doubt, ignore. Don’t click on pop-up windows or extraneous ads. And, don’t click on links in emails or web sites until you have verified their destinations by hovering your mouse over the link.
- Keep your private information safe. Use a strong, unique password or passphrase for each account, and avoid storing account information on a website. And consider using a digital password wallet such as 1Password or LastPass to secure your passwords.
- Segregate your browsing activities. Consider using separate browsers for sensitive logins and general web browsing.
- Use private networks for sensitive transactions. Avoid checking your bank account, making purchases, or logging in to other websites that include sensitive information when using public Wi-Fi.
Go stealth when browsing. Your browser can store quite a bit of information about your online activities, including cookies, cached pages, and history. To ensure the privacy of personal information online, limit access by going “incognito” and using the browser’s private mode.
Through mid-August, our Middlebury and Monterey campuses have trial access to this database from Al-Manhal, the only provider of full-text searchable databases of scholarly and scientific publications from the Arab and Islamic world. Al-Manhal’s over 13,000 e-books and 300 peer-reviewed journals can be searched through the user-friendly platform linked above. The full-text content is also fully indexed in Summon. (Allow a few days after this post for all Al-Manhal content to be find-able in Summon by Middlebury and MIIS users.)
Let us know what you think – email firstname.lastname@example.org or your liaison.
One feature that has been requested with increasing frequency of late is the ability to log in to Windows laptops over a wireless connection, i.e. without plugging into a network cable the first time. We have been piloting a way to do this with our Circulation loaners and a wireless lab in MBH for several months now with good results.
We will be bringing this feature to standard College-owned Windows 7 laptops starting this Monday, June 6th. After the change takes effect, you may notice the words “Windows will try to connect to MiddleburyCollege” underneath the normal login fields. What this means is that Windows will first use the credentials supplied to connect to the wireless network, and if successful, will then authenticate over the network, allowing you to login with your current username and password, whether or not you have used that device previously.
If the wireless connection should fail for some reason, for example because you are too far away from an access point for a good signal, Windows will check for cached credentials from a previous login as normal.
Please e-mail email@example.com with any questions about this change.
Information Technology Services
The new ACT Team process includes in-progress project presentations. These presentations are meant to inform the community about how things are going, what has been done and what still needs to be done, what is going well and what are the challenges.
In this meeting we will talk about Canvas.
These are open meetings, please feel free to share the invitation with anyone you feel is interested in the topics discussed.
To help raise awareness about community efforts to prevent significant security issues, Middlebury Information Security has launched a ‘Security Scout of the Month’ award.
Highlighting the valuable contributions of community security scouts in an @MiddInfoSec blog post and on Middlebury’s Information Security web site is a great way to show how a cautious and thoughtful approach to computing can protect the College community from cyber risks.
As an example, this past month, an attack against Middlebury’s Banner system was avoided thanks to the contributions of an astute member of our community, Justin Allen, who spotted a targeted phishing attack and raised the awareness around this malicious event.
As Justin Allen describes it:
“I received an email that started out dear account owner which usually gets my attention and as I read down thru the email I noticed that it said I had signed up for a paperless W-2 which I did not and it wanted me to logon to view it. After that I noticed a couple of another things that did not make sense for my Middlebury account one was the sender of the email which wasn’t from the college at all and we all have been told time and time again if the address doesn’t end with middlebury.edu it’s not from the college. Below is a copy of what was sent to me.”
This astute awareness is why Justin is this month’s ‘Security Scout of the Month’.
We are excited to celebrate the hard work and security conscious efforts of our community. Please watch for the next ‘Security Scout of the Month’ and help us recognize these efforts.
If you would like to recognize an individual for their information security contributions or would like to raise an information security concern, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
In January, 2016, the ACTT (formerly CTT) submitted a recommendation for Middlebury to adopt Canvas. We have received budget approval, and will begin the work of moving Middlebury into the Canvas service.
Thank you to all of the faculty and students that participated in the pilot. Your participation and feedback (Midd and MIIS) helped to make a strong recommendation. And thank you to Joe Antonioli, Bob Cole, Bill Koulopoulos, Stacy Reardon, Shel Sax and Heather Stafford for supporting these classes during the pilot.
Also, thank you to all of the schools that provided us with insight and the benefit of their experience with Canvas. We learned a lot from you.
There is a lot of work still to be done to move Canvas from pilot to enterprise, but we do hope that you take a moment to celebrate this milestone and the collective effort to get to this point.