What's Happening - October 2016

Cyber Security at Illinois

Posted on 10/20/2016

In the Information Technology industry, the month of October is known as National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM). This, of course, is not the only month of the year that our dedicated IT teams innovate, regulate and monitor our University System against malicious cyber threats. Across all three campuses, unique campaigns have been developed for the month of October to educate students, staff and faculty.  

On the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign campus, Chief Privacy and Security Officer, Joe Barnes gave a presentation on Illini Secure. Illini Secure is a new program aimed to protect data stored on network connected local devices, campus servers and cloud services. Barnes confirmed that an on-going IT Security assessment will take place over the next five years in order to determine precisely what kind, how much, and where data is being stored across these resources. Once this information is collected, Barnes and his colleagues will most appropriately know how to defend the aforementioned data against potential attacks. For more information about Cyber Security at Illinois, visit http://cybersecurity.illinois.edu.  

The University of Illinois at Chicago campus reports an increase in phishing at a complex level that hasn’t been seen previously. To combat the number of successful attacks, their NCSAM campaign revolves around educating UIC individuals on how to identify email and webpage phishing attacks. Phishing scams are most successful when using posing as an entity that the user is already familiar with. Without an individual being able to identify miniscule signals, they may willingly give out personal data to a “bad actor” or untrustworthy source. Visit http://security.uic.edu/awareness/ncsam-2016/ to learn more about UIC’s awareness campaign and see if you can spot the real email message or login webpage.  

The University of Illinois at Springfield is recognizing that protection is “Our Shared Responsibility". Using growing social media platforms, UIS is continually sharing tips, tricks, and articles to help individuals protect themselves at home, work and school against cyber-attacks. Data and files shared between multiple networks have the risk of transporting undetected mal- or ransomware. This malicious software is often only detected once data has been compromised or taken hostage by the malware owner. For good tips on staying safe online, visit http://www.uis.edu/informationtechnologyservices/security/cybersecurity/.  

The University of Illinois System takes great pride in the exceptional work done by scholars, staff and faculty alike. Our various IT divisions work diligently to ensure that the extensive research and data stored within the University networks are as secure as possible. By educating those who most frequently trust our networks and servers with their information, we can continue to maximize our cybersecurity.

See the feature archive for previous monthly updates.