Kansas State University

search

IT News

Author: Cathy Rodriguez

Beware of scams

K-State often sees an uptick of phishing scams around holidays and spring break, and this one is no exception. We have recently observed stolen credentials being used to target student financial aid, so be especially vigilant about any mail concerning loans and report anything out of the ordinary to the Office of Student Financial Assistance.

Also, cybercriminals are taking advantage of this uncertain time during the spread of the Coronavirus. Remember to be vigilant about communications related to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). Phishing emails are being sent with malicious attachments and links to fraudulent websites enticing you to hand over sensitive information. Also, use caution with social media pleas, texts, or calls related to COVID-19.

Continue reading “Beware of scams”

Cybersecurity Awareness: Protecting electronic payments

Online sales in the United States grew to a record high of nearly 19 percent during the 2019 holiday season.1 At the same time, the convenience of using credit cards and other electronic payment services is compelling consumers to rapidly reduce their use of cash. The 2019 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice report shows that cash is used about 50 percent of the time for in-person transactions under $10 (for things like lunch or coffee).2For larger purchases of $25 or more, cash is used only 10 percent of the time. Cybercriminals are taking advantage of the increase in electronic payments. According to the 2020 Cybersecurity Report from Check Point Research, mobile banking malware attacks increased 50 percent from 2018 to 2019.3 Here are some tips to help you safely use electronic payment sites.

  • Verify websites before entering important information. Clicking on a link may not take you where you expect to go. When shopping, banking, or making payments online, manually type in the website name (e.g., chase.com) instead of clicking on links in an email, social network post, or text message.
  • Look for deceptive emails and texts. Your bank or electronic payment processor won’t ask you to provide personal information or passwords via email, but scammers will. Watch this Consumer Reports video for examples.
  • Ignore phone calls from unknown and unfamiliar numbers. If you receive a phone call from someone who is urgently asking for money, there’s a good chance it’s a scam. Most of these calls can be safely ignored, but if you want to check, search for the organization’s website and find out for yourself. Don’t be rattled by threats over the phone.
  • Look for the lock icon in your browser. The lock icon in the address bar of your web browser shows that the website you’re visiting sends data in encrypted form. Never send money or pay for goods on a site without this important safeguard.
  • Public computers aren’t for private information. The computers in a hotel lobby or a public library may have a virus that records your activity, including any passwords you enter. Shop and make electronic payments only on a computer that you control.
  • Don’t use free Wi-Fi when making an electronic payment. The open nature of free Wi-Fi at cafes, airports, and other public venues makes it possible for others who are on the same Wi-Fi network to spy on your activities. If you cannot wait for another time to do your banking, use a VPN when using free Wi-Fi.
  • Consider getting a credit card just for electronic payments. If you decide to get a credit card or online account just for electronic payments, make sure the credit limit or available balance is low. This can protect you from a large loss due to online fraud.
  • Review your transactions regularly. Online banking allows you to check your account quickly and easily. Take time each day or each week to quickly review electronic payments. If you see charges you don’t recognize, notify your bank or payment application vendor (e.g., Venmo, PayPal, or Apple Pay) as soon as possible.
  • Check your credit reports to help spot fraud. Credit reporting services Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion are required to provide you with a free credit report once per year, so try to check one report every four months.4

Qualtrics demonstration scheduled for February 12

Join Qualtrics representatives on February 12 from 1:30 to 3:00 p.m. in the Flint Hills Room, K-State Student Union for a demonstration of new features in Qualtrics along with a walkthrough of use cases for the student experience journey.

Qualtrics started in higher education 20 years ago, and since then, the company has learned a lot about what Experience Management (XM) in education truly means. The goal is to brief campus users on the future of Experience Management and how to use experience data to drive decision making through role-based dashboards, automated analytics, and closed-loop feedback for faculty, students, parents, and community.

Those wanting to join using Zoom, the meeting URL is qualtrics.zoom.us/j/688042683 .

There will be time at the end of the presentation to discuss individual needs.

February 13: Introduction to Qualtrics training

Qualtrics surveys can be used for event registrations, satisfaction surveys, online forms, academic research, training, and more. Join us for an Introduction to Qualtrics training session from 2-4 p.m. Thursday, February 13, in 306 Calvin Hall. All students, faculty, and staff who use this research suite are welcome to attend.

Topics to be covered:

  • Create and manage surveys
  • Customize the look and feel
  • Collaborate with others
  • Use block options and survey flow
  • Use display and skip logic
  • Distribute a survey
  • Run and analyze reports

Graduate and undergraduate students must work with an advisor/supervisor for access to Qualtrics using this request form.

Registration through HRIS is required. See Using HRIS to register for classes.

Cybersecurity Awareness Training final reminder for 2019

K-State faculty and staff who haven’t completed the state-mandated annual Cybersecurity Awareness Training for 2019 will receive a reminder on Thursday, January 23.

This training introduces basic computer security concepts and good security practices and takes approximately 30 minutes to complete.

Cybersecurity awareness training is an important part of K-State’s strategy to protect our information systems and data. “We ALL have a responsibility to protect the information assets entrusted to us. Everyone at K-State serves a critical role in protecting K-State data”, said Chad Currier, K-State’s chief information security officer.

Everyone at K-State serves a critical role in protecting K-State data

Once you complete the training, your personnel record in HRIS will be updated. It will be listed under the Training Summary as Cybersecurity Awareness, with the course code WIT590.

If you have questions about the security awareness training, contact the IT Help Desk at helpdesk@k-state.edu or 532-7722.

Register for the 2020 Top Hat Info Session today!

What is Top Hat?

Top Hat is a classroom engagement system that has been integrated with K-State’s Canvas. Many instructors are using the platform in their classrooms this spring through the use of quick questions and discussions to increase student participation and engagement and receive real-time feedback. The questions and attendance scores can automatically be tracked and synced into Canvas.

K-State has signed an agreement with Top Hat to provide a lower fee structure for students, who can purchase a $24 semester subscription with access to all courses using Top Hat within the semester.

Who is the Top Hat Info Session for?

This session is for:

  • Instructors who have not yet seen or heard about the platform
  • Instructors who did not have time in the past to take a look at the platform
  • Instructors who are not sure yet of how they can use active learning platform in class
  • Instructors who want to hear from K-State faculty’s experience using the platform

When is the Top Hat Info Session taking place? 

Amanda Laila, the K-State Top Hat Consultant will run the information session on Wednesday, January 15, 1:30-3:30 p.m. in the Big 12 room, K-State Student Union.

Submit your registration.

Participants will learn how to create an active learning environment in the classroom by implementing core Top Hat functionalities in order to boost student engagement, participation and motivation.

Logistics: 
Eligibility: All faculty members (tenured, tenure-track, or term) and staff with a teaching role who have a genuine interest in learning about and building on their current Top Hat knowledge are encouraged to attend. This event is limited to 25 individuals, who will be selected on the first come-first served basis.
Questions?
Would you like a one-on-one Top Hat training?
K-State’s dedicated Top Hat representative is Amanda Laila. Contact Amanda via email at amanda.laila@tophatmonocle.com or book an appointment via her calendar webpage.

Reminder: VPN users need to switch to GlobalProtect by Nov. 14

GlobalProtect logoOn November 14, the AnyConnect VPN will be retired. K-Staters who use AnyConnect as their VPN client need to switch to GlobalProtect.

GlobalProtect is currently available for both Mac and Windows platforms. GlobalProtect will be available later this year for Linux computers, smartphones, and tablets.

Installation instructions

For more information about the VPN visit: https://www.k-state.edu/its/security/secure-data/vpn/

Cybersecurity: Creating a password

Creating a strong password is an essential step to protecting yourself online. Using long and complex passwords is one of the easiest ways to defend yourself from cybercrime. No citizen is immune to cyber risk, but #BeCyberSmart and you can minimize your chances of an incident.

SIMPLE TIPS TO SECURE IT.

Creating a strong password is easier than you think. Follow these simple tips to shake up your password protocol:

  • Use a long passphrase. According to NIST guidance, you should consider using the longest password or passphrase permissible. For example, you can use a passphrase such as a news headline or even the title of the last book you read. Then add in some punctuation and capitalization.
  • Don’t make passwords easy to guess. Do not include personal information in your password such as your name or pets’ names. This information is often easy to find on social media, making it easier for cybercriminals to hack your accounts.
  • Avoid using common words in your password. Substitute letters with numbers and punctuation marks or symbols. For example, @ can replace the letter “A” and an exclamation point (!) can replace the letters “I” or “L.”
  • Get creative. Use phonetic replacements, such as “PH” instead of “F”. Or make deliberate, but obvious misspellings, such as “enjin” instead of “engine.”
  • Keep your passwords on the down-low. Don’t tell anyone your passwords and watch for attackers trying to trick you into revealing your passwords through email or calls. Every time you share or reuse a password, it chips away at your security by opening up more avenues in which it could be misused or stolen.
  • Unique account, unique password. Having different passwords for various accounts helps prevent cyber criminals from gaining access to these accounts and protect you in the event of a breach. It’s important to mix things up—find easy-to- remember ways to customize your standard password for different sites.
  • Double your login protection. Enable multi-factor authentication (MFA) to ensure that the only person who has access to your account is you. Use it for email, banking, social media, and any other service that requires logging in. If MFA is an option, enable it by using a trusted mobile device, such as your smartphone, an authenticator app, or a secure token—a small physical device that can hook onto your key ring.
  • Utilize a password manager to remember all your long passwords. The most secure way to store all of your unique passwords is by using a password manager. With just one master password, a computer can generate and retrieve passwords for every account that you have – protecting your online information, including credit card numbers and their three-digit Card Verification Value (CVV) codes, answers to security questions, and more.

Download the creating a password guide.