Current Students and Staff

// University News

Top tips for staying safe online

IT Services have collated some key messages for staff and students at the University with guidance on how to ensure you can avoid the dangers of the internet, both at work and in your personal life as part of Safer Internet Day (11 February).

Creating a strong password

Make sure you use strong and different passwords for various accounts and services you use to prevent hackers accessing your data.

Know the tell-tale signs of a phishing email

Several signs to look out for include poor spelling or grammar, a suspicious link, making a purchase, requests for private information such as your PIN number or password, and often a claim that might just be too good to be true (e.g. ‘Congratulations, you have won a free holiday’)

Stay safe when you browse the internet

Check the website you’re browsing has a padlock to ensure it is secure and look out for websites with ‘https’ at the front of their URL, as all traffic is encrypted compared to those with just ‘http’.

Don’t click on random popups and remember just because you are browsing a website in private mode, it does not make it more secure.

Sharing and streaming content

Be careful when streaming or sharing content, as it may not be from a legitimate source. It is also important you ensure you are not downloading illegal content from the internet, such as films and music. By doing so, not only are you committing a criminal offence, but it may also download a virus or ransomware to your device.

Think before you share on social media

Although social media is a great platform to connect with both friends, colleagues and new people, it can also be a dangerous place for users to take advantage of you.

Criminals may create a fake profile to befriend you in order to obtain personal information which cannot be found publicly. Your posts can also be used to guess your passwords (such as your date of birth, or the names of your children).

For more guidance about staying safe online – as well as other IT Security tips such as keeping your devices safe – visit the dedicated webpage. Staff members are encouraged to undertake the Information Security course to gain an overview of the key issues concerning information security and how it can be managed effectively. It takes around an hour to complete and can be accessed through LEARN

The team has also created a playlist of short videos about cyber security which is available to view online.

If you are concerned about your online security, please contact IT Services by emailing or calling 01509 222333.