Device Security

Smart phones, tablets and laptops are used on a daily basis at JCU. These devices often contain information vital to the University’s teaching, learning and research initiatives and it is important they are kept secure.

Mobile Device Security

Today’s mobile devices are as powerful and connected as any desktop or laptop computer. Take the same precautions on your mobile device as you do on your computer with regard to messaging and online safety.

DO

  • Keep your mobile security software, web browser, and operating system up to date, this is the best defences against viruses, malware and other online threats.

  • Use a strong passcode to lock your mobile device.

  • Review the privacy policy and understand what data (location, access to your contacts or social networks etc.) an app can access on your device, before you download or install it.

DON’T

  • Conduct sensitive business on your mobile device when connected to public or open Wi-Fi hotspots.

  • Respond to unknown texts, calls or voicemail. Just like with email, requests for personal information or for immediate action, are almost always a scam.

Security Software

No matter how careful you are, there is always the potential for security breaches on your devices. To help minimise the risk to your data good security software is essential.

DO

  • Apply software updates to your operating system and all other programs (preferably letting the computer manage this automatically). If the computer you are using is owned by JCU this service is provided for you.

  • Install and run security software such as anti-virus, anti-spyware or a personal firewall to help protect your computer from viruses, spyware and hackers.

DON’T

  • Ignore prompts from your Operating System or software to install updates.

  • Leave trial or expired software on your computer. Unpatched software can be exploited by hackers to gain access and control of your computer.

Microsoft has a personal firewall built into their Windows Operating System which all Windows users can make use of, there are also links to several free and trial versions of anti-virus and personal firewall software at www.microsoft.com/security

A lot of malicious code is delivered via email, anti-spam does a lot more than just keep junk mail out of your inbox; it may well stop you receiving viruses or other malware.

Anti-spyware tools are similar to anti-virus tools - they run on your computer and attempt to block or remove programs that would capture your personal information (e.g. browsing habits) and provide this to a third parties. Certain types of Spyware (e.g. the kind installed along with shareware) are not considered malicious by anti-virus software and may not be detected. As with all software, these tools are only as good as their most recent update, so ensure that your anti-virus, anti-spam and anti-spyware products have automatic updates enabled and periodically check that their 'definitions' or 'signatures' are up to date. These definitions or signatures should generally be no older than one week old, for reliable protection.

Physical Security

Your personal computer is an essential tool for working and studying at JCU, because it contains important files including emails, passwords and other sensitive information, you should takes steps to physically protect your computer at all times.

DO

  • Lock or log out of your workstation when you are away from it. Locking can be set to occur after a period of inactivity.

  • Visually inspect devices connected to your workstation. Devices could have been installed that have the ability to compromise your security. Pay particular attention to your mouse, keyboard and network connections.

DON’T

  • Leave your Laptop unattended in public areas.

  • Leave your office unlocked when you aren’t in the room, even if you’re just heading to the bathroom. If you leave your door open, you are providing thieves easy access to your belongings.

More Links:

Computer Virus Guide