March 5th, 2014
Many of FAU Students and Faculty/Staff are now using Cloud Storage. What is Cloud Storage all about? Well, Cloud Storage is a service provider offering called DaaS - Data as a Service. The Service provider will give you access to your files from an APP or Web Browser and you can move the files from/to the Cloud via the Internet. Current popular free Cloud Storage providers are:
Microsoft OneDrive (formerly SkyDrive) - 7GB free cloud storage and integrated with all Outlook.com users
Google Drive - 5GB free cloud storage and integrated with FAU Owl Apps and other Google Users
Apple iCloud - 5GB free cloud storage and integrated with Apple iPod, iPhone, iPad, etc. users
Dropbox - 2GB free cloud storage and integrated with apps for the MS Windows desktop, ios and android devices
I would never put anything personal or private in the Cloud without encrypting it first. I suggest that you protect your Personal Identifiable Information (PII) and don’t post it or any other sensitive information in these Cloud service environments. Cloud Storage services are great for sharing pictures, music and normal documents but I would never store anything in the Cloud that could be used by the cyber criminals.
February 17th, 2014
What antivirus software do you use? Regardless of whether you use a Mac or a PC, make sure you have antivirus protection on your systems and make sure you keep it updated. Without the appropriate security patches applied, your systems and your applications are vulnerable to attacks or malware exploits. Make it a practice to update your software regularly, on a certain day and at a certain time. My software is set to auto update daily, at 3:00 a.m. I also do a full security scan of my Microsoft Windows Operating system every weekend starting at 1:00 a.m.
So you may ask, what antivirus software do I use on my personal system? I use Microsoft Security Essentials on all my MS Windows systems. MS Security Essentials is a free product and it works well for me. It is basically the same product as the enterprise version Microsoft Forefront security product that we use here at the University minus some of the extra bells and whistles for centralized management and management console features.
And what about you? What do you use as an antivirus product and how often do you keep it updated? There are lots of great products out there. The top-rated “Pay for” security and antivirus products for 2013 were Webroot, McAfee, Trend Micro, and Kaspersky Labs. If you do decide to buy an antivirus product just be sure you keep it updated.
Finally, make sure you also keep your web browsers and plugins up to date with the latest versions and patches. Be cyber wiser! Keep your Antivirus software updated and patched, and set to auto update. For more Cyber-Security information please go to our web site at www.fau.edu/security or contact Larry Thomas, firstname.lastname@example.org, 561-297-3259
January 8th, 2014
BYOD is skyrocketing so we need to ensure that we take our mobile device security just as seriously as our desktop security. First we need to lock the devices with a security code or password as a first line of defense. Next, don’t “jail break” your mobile devices. Jail breaking is when you circumvent the manufacturer’s setup and operating system (OS) and basically do your own thing with the setup and security of the device.
Some common ways that mobile devices get infected is from the download of applications from different App stores. You can easily install an infected application without knowing it. Google and Apple stores aren’t perfect but at least some vetting takes place before apps are placed in these stores. Here are some other measures you can take to help protect your mobile devices:
- Password protect your mobile devices. Use PIN code or passwords.
- Update and patch the OS and applications on your devices to reduce vulnerability.
- Enable encryption if possible to slow down the cyber thieves.
- Don’t store sensitive work-related information on your private mobile devices.
- Stick with the conventional Apps from legitimate stores like Google Play and Apple Store.
- Pay attention to what you install.
- Avoid opening links from sources that you don’t recognize or that appear suspicious.
- Use WI-FI networks that are encrypted like WPA2 encryption.
- Reduce app clutter; if you don’t use it delete it!
“Be Cyber Wiser” and keep your mobile devices’ operating systems (iOS and Android) and their Apps updated!