Cyber Security Awareness
We live in a world that is more connected than ever before. Whether we realize it or not, the internet touches almost all aspects or our lives. With all the benefits of the internet there are also dangers, but these dangers can be reduced by being cautious and employing cyber security.
What is cyber security?
Sophisticated systems and hackers rely on unsuspecting and gullible users as targets in their exploitation schemes. Often cyber criminals look to steal or maliciously destroy valuable information or essential services. Examples of attacks include banking or financial fraud, theft of intellectual property (such as research data) or systems shutdowns that have substantial personal, industry or economic consequences.
Cyber security measures are tactics put in place that focus on protecting computers, networks, software, data and the people who use them from unauthorized access, change or destruction.
Why is cyber security important?
A 2014 study by comScore Inc. indicates that Canadians rank first amongst worldwide internet users, averaging 36.7 hours online per week. The United States followed closely behind, averaging 36.2 hours. With so much of our time spent surfing the net either for work or for play, education about how to be safe online should be a top priority.
Due to the nature of the work conducted through Queen’s University, a vast amount of confidential information is collected on computers and servers across campus. As cyberattacks grow in sophistication and frequency, Queen’s ITS has made the security of our data and users a top priority.
Who is responsible for cyber security?
All members of the Queen's community have a responsibility to preserve the integrity and reliability of the University's IT infrastructure, and the confidentiality of valuable or sensitive information. These responsibilities are laid out in the Electronic Information Security Policy Framework documents on the Secretariat and Legal Counsel’s website.
How can I stay safe?
There are a number of things you can do to help protect the university's data as well as your own information.
The following list will help you build a solid internet security foundation:
- Educate yourself - if you haven't done so already take the online safety course on Moodle. The Information Security Awareness Training will give you the tools needed as a first defense against cyber attacks. (Use your NetID to login).
- Create strong passwords - create a strong password for your accounts and never share your passwords with anyone.
- Be social media savvy - understand when and where certain pieces of information should be shared and limit what you post about yourself.
- Secure your mobile devices - your mobile devices often contain sensitive and confidential data; ensure your mobile device is secure from threats.
- Encrypt your information - stronger than a password, any device or hard drive containing university data or information must be encrypted.
For more information to help you stay safe online, visit the Cyber Tips and Tricks page.