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Cyber security is everyone's business

Published October 18, 2017

by Benjamin Blanchet

Learning how to steer clear of cyber threats is more important than ever. 

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Benjamin Blanchet (UB student, Class of 2018) is an English major with an interest in journalism. After graduating from UB, he hopes to attend grad school and pursue a career writing about music and the arts. An Albany, NY native, Benjamin enjoys biking and reading in his spare time.

UB’s Information Security Office offers helpful tips for keeping your personal information safe.

According to Dr.  Catherine J. Ullman, UB Senior Information Security Analyst, “If you’re a student, when you login to HUB, your credentials give you access to your social security number appear in clear text. UB staff can access their W2 forms online, which contains their social security number.”

“Whatever we talk about in terms of security at work, we try to make it clear that it should be the same as at home. We want you to be safe in both places.”

One easy outlet for scammers to get a foot in the door is email. Dr. Ullman advises customers to view incoming messages with a critical eye.

“We tell people to be skeptical and suspicious any time they get an email they aren’t absolutely expecting,” Dr. Ullman said.

“If you get an email from your bank, and it’s a legitimate bank you do business with – call the bank. Even if it’s a business you do work with in some capacity, ‘bad guys’ can certainly set up phony messages that look like they’re coming from the right place.”

Phony messages like these are a fact of life and they happen regularly at UB. You can find a comprehensive list of examples on the UBIT website.

The bottom line: the more cyber aware we all are, the more cyber secure we’ll all be.