Information Technology Services
Information Technology Services

Cyber Tips and Tricks banner

cyber tips and tricks iconCyber Tips and Tricks

  1. Keep your computer, software, browser and browser apps up-to-date.
    • Automatically accept updates from trusted sources (i.e. Windows Updates).
  2. Scan for viruses, spyware and adware.
    • ITS provides faculty and staff with free antivirus software for Mac and Windows computers. Download from MyQueen'sU
    • Keep it up-to-date and scan your files regularly.
  3. Never save your password in a browser or application.
    • Browsers often save passwords in plain text format. Anyone using the computer can locate your password.
    • Always log out of applications when you are finished.
    • When using a computer at a public site, close the browser and log off of the computer before leaving.
  4. Never leave your computer unattended.
    • It takes less than 10 seconds to steal a laptop.
    • Lock your computer or log off whenever you are not using it. Even if you trust an individual not to walk away with your device, they could become mischievous with access to your social media!
  5. Do not use the Administrator account for your everyday activities.
    • The administrator account has full control over your computer including permission to install software. User Account Control (UAC) limits the user's rights even if they are a member of the Administrators group. This prevents malicious apps or malware from making unauthorized changes to your computer.
    • If you do get a virus, it is limited to your user account not the entire computer.
    • When you need to be the administrator
      • Log in as the Administrator, or
      • Right mouse click on the app you wish to run and choose Run as Administrator, where you will be prompted to provide the Administrator's credentials to continue.
  6. Protect your personal information.
    • Your NetID is your network identity at Queen's. The key to your identity is your password. Always use a strong password and do not share it with anyone!
    • If you must write your password down, do not record it alongside your NetID and do not store it in an easily accessible location.
    • Do not send it to yourself in an email.
    • If anyone asks for NetID or PIN, just say no! ITS will never ask for your password.
  7. Limit the amount of information you post on the internet about yourself, your family, and your friends.
    • Remember that your personal information is accessible to everyone in the public domain.
    • Use privacy settings to avoid sharing information with people you do not know.
  8. Be aware of phishing attempts to gain access to your personal and/or financial information.
    • Phishing is a form of identity theft where the victims are lured into giving away sensitive information, usually through email. Messages are designed to look like they are coming from Queen's, your bank or another business that you use online.
    • Usually there is an urgent matter appeal, such as failure to log in will have your account closed. These emails request you to click a link and log in to validate your account.
    • If in doubt do not enter your credentials. Instead, contact the business directly, log into their webpage directly (not through the email link), or phone them.
  9. If the data is important, make a copy.
  10. Check your browser's security levels to see what you are allowing.
    • When downloading files, always choose where to save the file(s).
    • Block pop-ups in your browser - you can customize this setting to allow pop-ups from trusted sites like your bank and Queen's University.
    • Check which apps are installed in your browser and know what permissions they have to your information.
  11. When purchasing or banking online, make sure the website is secure.


Last Updated: January 11, 2018