Protecting your safety and privacy online

Over 236 million online attacks which include data theft and cybercrime, occurs in an average year which includes financial and identify theft. 

Protecting your Safety and Privacy online

A lot of your academic and personal information will be saved and shared online.  This includes social media accounts, online banking, shopping and your assignments or dissertations.   Making your online accounts secure makes it harder for online criminals to steal your data, infect your devices with a virus that corrupts your academic work and protects your money.  You also need to make sure that you always lock your devices.  For example, if you leave your laptop unattended in the library and the screen isn’t locked, not only could the device be stolen but someone could also delete your work and/or change your password so you can’t get back into your device.  Locking the screen protects your work and personal information you may have stored.  

Creating a strong password

This is very important to your protection online.  Hackers, (people who use computers to gain unauthorised access to data) use automated tools to ‘guess’ passwords.  Using a password that is a set of numbers, name of a place or family pet name are very easy to guess.  If you use the same password for most of your accounts, once your password has been ‘guessed’ this gives someone access to all your accounts.

A strong password is also needed for your university IT account.  You will store the majority of your work online, if you password is guessed then you could find that your academic work is lost or affected by a virus.  This can have a signficant impact especially if you have your dissertation, lab results or assignments on your device with no back up.  

University IT Services has good guidance for choosing strong passwords

Watch this video to find out how to keep your information, academic work and devices safe.