Secure Computing Tips

"Lock" Your Computer - It is a natural habit to lock your home when you leave for work, or lock your vehicle when you go into a store, but we don't always think about locking our computers. In today's environment, this habit must be developed and it is easy to do. When you leave your computer, simply press Ctrl/Alt/Delete and then press Enter. When you return to the computer, press Ctrl/Alt/Delete and type your password to resume.

Another method is to turn on the "lock" feature on your screen saver. This way, it will occur automatically after a set time just in case you forget. To set this feature, go to Start=>Control Panel=>Display. Select the Personalization and then Screen Saver. Make two changes: fill in the number of minutes before the screen saver activates; then check the box to "on resume, password protect". When you return to the computer, press Ctrl-Alt-Delete and type your password to resume.

Password - Your password should be at least eight characters long and contain characters from at least three of the following four categories:

  • English lowercase letter (e.g. a, b, c),
  • English uppercase letter (e.g. A, B, C),
  • Number (e.g. 1, 2, 3),
  • Special character (e.g. @, #, *).

Passwords should not be the same as your BearID, and should not be a word found in a dictionary. Please review all policies on password protection here.

Away from the Office - Employees are often in possession of items (laptop computers, keys, ID cards, etc.) that provide access to important, and sometimes confidential, University resources. All employees should make sure to follow these best practices:

  • Be sure that purses, wallets, keys, flash drives, CDs, and laptops are not visible in an unattended vehicle.
  • Lock unattended vehicles if purses, wallets, keys, flash drives, CDs, or laptops are inside.
  • Immediately report any loss of University property or personal property with University access (e.g. ID card) to one's supervisor.

Computer Repair - Who is fixing your computer? Computer technicians from ITS are assigned to a repair based on the type of problem you are experiencing. Different people work in the networking, hardware and software areas of ITS. We also have student workers that assist our full-time staff. Please follow these guidelines when a technician arrives:

1. Check the ID badge when a technician arrives. All ITS staff and student workers carry a picture ID card with them.
2. Call the Help Desk if you have any questions about the technician.
3. If you are not expecting a technician, verify who they are and determine what they are there to do. Call the Help Desk to verify their answers.

Printing Documents - Please follow these guidelines when printing documents to a departmental printer.

1. Make sure that all documents are collected from the printer as soon as possible.
2. Shred any documents to be discarded if they contain information that would be considered private or confidential, such as names, addresses, employee IDS, student grades, information of a financial nature.

Updated February 27, 2014