October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month. The MUSC Information Security Office wants to raise awareness around campus of good cyber habits. Strong passwords, detecting phishing emails, and not oversharing sensitive information are critical to protecting MUSC data. Higher Education is targeted by malicious actors for many reasons including theft of research, destruction of research, and access to University compute resources.
Here are 5 habits you can start using IMMEDIATELY to reduce your cyber risk:
- Enable Multi-factor authentication (MFA) for your cloud-based services. If you have ever checked your email from off-campus, you have used MUSC’s MFA. Many online services like online banking, personal email, social media are setup to allow you to take advantage of MFA. Take a minute to check out the settings on your accounts and see if you can use MFA. If a cyber-criminal gets your password (which can easily happen through phishing or a data breach), MFA will stop access to your account until you can change your password.
- Make sure your technology is patched. This includes your phone, your computers, you home media devices like Apple TV, your IOT devices (like your smart toaster, yeah that’s a real thing), etc. Patches are released by vendors to close security holes that are found. If you are not patching, you are leaving your devices (and the network they are on) exposed to risk.
- Uninstall unused or unneeded software. The more software you have installed on your phone, tablet, or computer the larger the attack surface. If you don’t need them, get rid of them. Plus you free up system resources for the new Candy Crush that’s about to drop.
- Verify the security and privacy settings on your social media accounts. You may be sharing information with your ‘community’ beyond what you actually think you are sharing
- Check out the information security office’s weekly Podcast #InfosecICU