Category Archives: Safe Computing

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Major side-channel discovery wins NSA contest

By | December 2, 2020

The National Security Agency recently recognized a major breakthrough in the field of side-channel attacks as the winner of the 2020 Best Scientific Cybersecurity Paper competition. Daniel Genkin, assistant professor of electrical engineering and computer science, worked on the paper with collaborators from around the world. The winning paper, describing an exploit called Spectre, broke open a new… Read More »

Shop online safely

As the holidays approach and the pandemic continues, you are highly likely to be doing more online shopping. Protect yourself from scams and data theft with these tips from ITS Information Assurance. Shop with trustworthy sites and sellers. Stick to businesses you know and trust, and compare descriptions and prices from multiple sellers to help spot scams. Be… Read More »

Support for Sophos Antivirus on UM-owned machines to end December 2020

Support for Sophos Antivirus installed on U-M machines will end on December 31, 2020. Enhanced Endpoint Protection powered by CrowdStrike replaces Sophos. The Sophos product will continue to work, but will not be updated, and quickly will become deprecated. If you are responsible for managing university Macs, please ensure that you transition them to CrowdStrike Falcon for endpoint… Read More »

New tool automates popular system security technique

By | November 18, 2020

Working with researchers from the University of Texas at Austin, Xinyu Wang, assistant professor of electrical engineering and computer science, co-authored an award-winning paper that demonstrates how to automatically build sandboxing policies to keep a computer system safe. Sandboxing is a software management strategy that isolates applications from critical system resources and other programs. One common sandbox approach… Read More »

Password tip: Use a unique password for every site and service

Here is an important password tip: Do not reuse your UMICH (Level-1) password. Try to set a unique password for each site and online service you use (or use a password manager), and never use your UMICH password for non-university accounts or services. Reusing passwords puts you at risk. There have been a number of data breaches outside… Read More »

Cybersecurity Month wrap-up by the numbers

As shown above, highlights of Cybersecurity month include: 9 virtual training sessions covering topics like privacy and data use, using Duo two-factor authentication, data classification, and more 4 virtual drop-in Q&A sessions with security analysts 1000+ people sent and received email with Virtru enhanced email security                                                                            22K+ MiWorkspace and MiServer managed systems have CrowdStrike Falcon installed for enhanced… Read More »

Collaboration on new HIPAA course for the Shared Services Center

Staff in the Shared Services Center (SSC) play an important role in properly handling sensitive institutional data, including data regulated by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). This past summer, the SSC decided it was time to update their HIPAA training, which they require annually of their staff.  The SSC noticed that Information and Technology Services… Read More »

How to protect your online calls from ‘Zoom-bombing’

By | October 19, 2020

The Michigan Daily recently spoke to experts on campus — including Ravi Pendse, vice president for information technology and chief information officer, and Kyle Lindsey and Hanah Stiverson, two doctoral students who are working on a book with Professor Lisa Nakamura about Zoom-bombing — to compile a list of tips to ensure calls for classes or clubs remain… Read More »

SUMIT Reimagined goes online

Security at University of Michigan IT (SUMIT) 2020, ITS’s free annual event hosted during National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, goes online for SUMIT Reimagined. This series of informational events where members of the U‑M community can get help from IT experts on a variety of topics is entirely virtual this year. Check out a few of the events below and see… Read More »

Recording classes: (Some) rules of the road

By | September 14, 2020

U-M classes are overwhelming being taught remotely this semester. This means that some instructors may, for a variety of reasons, wish to record their classes. The Safe Computing website has guidelines for instructors who plan to record class activities. Recordings where students can be identified—from in-person sessions or remote instruction via Zoom, BlueJeans, or any other videoconferencing application—are:… Read More »

Course aims to train future leader against cyber crime

By | September 11, 2020

In the course “Cybersecurity for Future Leaders” (EECS 498 / PUBPOL 475), students will gain a better understanding of the science, technology, public policy, and national security considerations behind cybersecurity in order to protect the very tenets of democracy. Election security will be one of the course’s six focus areas this fall 2020. The course is taught from… Read More »

A new email security tool — Virtru!

Make your U-M Gmail even more secure Information and Technology Services (ITS) is happy to announce that effective immediately, students, staff, and faculty have access to a new email security tool — Virtru. (Note: Michigan Medicine provides a similar capability for their email service). With Virtru, you can send end-to-end encrypted email to any address, prevent a forwarded email… Read More »

Do your part to deflect ransomware

Ransomware is on the rise and you have an important role to play in protecting U-M!!! Cybercriminals and other threat actors continue to ratchet up ransomware attacks on universities, healthcare providers, and other organizations. This summer Michigan State University and the University of California San Francisco, among others, have reported recent attacks.  Ransomware attempts often begin with a… Read More »

New UMICH password strength requirements

Next time you change or reset your UMICH (Level-1) password, you will need to meet new password strength requirements. Existing passwords are not affected by the new requirements and can remain as is. The new requirements align with current best practices and National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) guidelines for passwords. Given the sophistication of attempted attacks… Read More »

Duo for U-M VPN now available

You can now use Duo two-factor protection with the U-M Virtual Private Network (VPN). With faculty, staff, and students already benefiting from Duo two-factor authentication at Weblogin, ITS is working to further extend this protection to other university services. Try it now on your personal computer Visit ITS: Getting Started With VPN and choose your operating system to… Read More »

Check systems for signs of compromise

Has a system you are responsible for been compromised? How would you know? What should you do? Almost all IT professionals at some time in their career have faced these questions. Information Assurance (IA) offers guidance for checking your systems for signs of compromise, or simply suspicious activity.  Start by checking system and software logs for the following… Read More »