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October is Cyber Security Awareness Month

October 01, 2021

Cyber Security Awareness Month, an internationally recognized campaign that takes place each October, helps communities learn about the importance of information security.

SFU aims to promote a culture of security throughout the University and do our utmost to ensure the online safety and security of our community members. Protection and mitigation from cyber security risks and continually improving our information security is a matter of survival.

Over the next month, SFU IT Services will shine a spotlight on a few key areas that will help us all stay safely connected.

Week 1 - Multi-factor Authorization (MFA). What is it and why do you need it?

Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) is an extra layer of protection that can be added to your SFU account to drastically increase its security. By using MFA, your digital identity, data, and access to systems are still protected even if your password is compromised.

This is one of many cyber security tools we can use to stay safely connected. 

Did you know?

  • On average, there are 4,000,000+ logins per month to SFU web applications protected by CAS.
  • Each month, SFU detects and remediates 200+ unauthorized logins from stolen, phished, or guessed credentials.
  • It only takes one compromised account to put digital identities, sensitive data, and infrastructure at high risk.

You can learn more about MFA and how to opt-in here.

Week 2 - Changing your password.

With the incremental rise in cyber security incidents globally, including more than a double increase in those aimed toward higher education institutions, it's never a bad idea to refresh your passwords. 

As part of the overarching IT security strategy and continued work to improve our systems, SFU encourages our community members to change their SFU Computing ID password regularly. 

Did you know?

  • The practice of regularly changing your SFU computing ID password is a key action you can take to help support the safety of SFU’s systems and data.
  • By changing your password and taking part in other security initiatives such as Multi-Factor Identification (MFA), we can enhance our ability to counter cyberattacks and better protect the SFU community. 

Learn more about the importance of this initiative.

Week 3 - Don't click that Link!

While SFU employs proactive security and technological safeguards, you can also help protect your personal information.

Be aware of current online ploys or phishing scams that try to get you to provide personal and/or financial information. Do not respond to unsolicited emails or click unfamiliar links.

Did you know?

  • Extortion phishing are scams that threaten to get you to provide sensitive information or money. Extortion emails will often contain some of your personal information, usually a password. The message will state that they have more of your confidential information and will expose it online or use it unless you pay. 

Remember, SFU will never ask for your password via email, phone, text, or social media.

For more information on how to identify and avoid these emails, visit the IT Services Phishing Scams page.

Week 4 - Take care of what you share online.

Are you about to share something online to your followers?

Whether it’s a fun night out or that new apartment, look at it from all angles. Who will see this post? Is this sensitive personal information? If so, reconsider sharing it. Remember to keep your private information private.

Did you know?

  • Many smartphones automatically attach the exact location where a photo was taken. Be sure to turn off geotagging in your camera’s settings to be proactive about what information you are sharing with social media sites.

Learn more about how to take care of what you share online.

Cyber Security Awareness Month Resources