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International Cybersecurity Awareness Month Keep your Online Accounts and Devices Safe at Home and at Work

With the growing demand for online convenience, the need for strong account and network security is very important. Since March, many people have had to move away from their secured network environments at work to their home offices. Not surprisingly, cyber criminals have been taking full advantage of the situation. That is why for October 2020, International Cyber Security Awareness Month, the Chapman University Information Security team will be sharing some best practices on securing your online devices at home and at work.

There is a general rule of thumb that if the device connects to the internet, it can be accessed anywhere and by anyone online. We have all heard the horror stories of hackers maliciously accessing home network devices such as baby monitors and web cameras.

Choose Strong Passwords or Passphrases

These incidents are intrusive, terrifying and avoidable. How, you ask? The answer is very simple: create strong and encrypted passwords or passphrases for your home network accounts. Having a strong password or passphrase will make it more difficult for cyber attackers to access your account information, but this is not always enough.

Use Two-Factor Authentication

Enrolling in a multi-factor authentication program is another great way to safeguard your data and devices. Multi-factor authentication can help stop cyber criminals from accessing your account information in the event your username and password are compromised. This system requires users to authenticate their login attempt via a six digit code sent via text message, phone call or authenticator app.

To help safe-guard University users’ information and sensitive student and financial data, Chapman is now requiring all students, faculty and staff to enroll their Chapman accounts in Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) by January 15, 2021. Although the required enrollment date for 2FA is not until next year, we will be actively encouraging all users to enroll as soon as possible. The self-enrollment process is easy and only takes a few minutes to complete. Once enrolled, you will not have to worry about your Chapman account being compromised. However, you should continue exercising extreme caution when working online.

Learn more about 2FA services at Chapman.

You can also go straight to the self-enrollment page. Please be aware that once enrolled, you will be signed out of your Chapman account on all desktop and mobile devices. We recommend that if you are using a mobile device for checking Chapman University email, that you download and use the Outlook 365 mail app for the best reliability and security.

Need Support?

If you would like assistance with enrolling your account, IS&T is here to help! Our Service Desk team is ready to help guide you through enrolling your account. This process can be done over the phone and only takes a couple minutes to complete. Our Service Desk team can be reached at : Servicedesk@chapman.edu or at (714) 997-6600.

Additional articles reinforcing the benefit of using 2FA:

UCSF ransomware attack: University had data protection but it wasn’t used on affected systems

Cyber swindlers take University of Utah for nearly $500K in ransomware attack

9 times cyberattacks disrupted education this year

UK University suffers cyberattack, ransomware gang claims responsibility

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