Enjoy Cyber Monday Safely with Tips from OIT

  • December 2nd, 2019

While Buddy the Elf spreads Christmas cheer, OIT eases cybersecurity fears. This holiday season, follow these tips from the UA Office of Information Technology to practice cybersecurity during the jolliest time of the year.

Who’s the real Santa?

holiday cyber security tipsIn December, OIT sees many phishing emails that pose as UPS Inc., U.S. Postal Service and FedEx attempting to lure recipients into clicking a malicious link to “track their package.” Remember the red flags of phishing: look at the from email address of a message, and hover before you click on any links or attachments. Package tracking messages should derive from the original merchant. Know the real delivery service, just like Buddy knows the real Santa.

Add DUO, your second level of defense, to new devices.

Will you make the nice list and receive a new phone? Download the DUO mobile app and receive push notifications to access myBama, Webmail and other UA applications. Consider DUO as your elfish backup in a snowball fight. OIT has step-by-by step guides to install and activate DUO mobile on your new smartphone. Visit oit.ua.edu/duo to learn more.

Use personal devices and personal email addresses for online shopping.

Use a personal Gmail, Yahoo or other personal account for online shopping. Do not open up your ua.edu email address or University-owned device to unnecessary threats. You can also better secure your personal accounts with two-factor authentication. Google two-step verification is a practice similar to DUO that adds a second layer of security to your Gmail account. Activate two-factor on your personal email account today.

Buddy the Elf, what’s your Social Security number?

Phone phishing scams are on the rise. Do not fall for scam calls with callers asking for sensitive data and posing as the IRS. If the IRS is actually trying to contact you, they will mail a letter to you. Many service providers offer applications such as AT&T’s Call Protect to clearly label spam risk calls. Answer calls only from individuals you know and avoid unknown numbers. Stay smart and safe online this holiday season.

What more should I know? 

The IT Service Desk will be closed Dec. 23, 2019, through Jan. 1, 2020.

For more information, visit oit.ua.edu/security.

The University of Alabama, the state’s oldest and largest public institution of higher education, is a student-centered research university that draws the best and brightest to an academic community committed to providing a premier undergraduate and graduate education. UA is dedicated to achieving excellence in scholarship, collaboration and intellectual engagement; providing public outreach and service to the state of Alabama and the nation; and nurturing a campus environment that fosters collegiality, respect and inclusivity.