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Best Practices

Passwords

The ITS recommends changing your passwords at least every year but it is best to change every few months.  Creating strong passwords can help protect your computer resources.  Below are some best practices and good habits for creating passwords.

  • Passwords should be at least 8 characters but 10 or more is better.
  • Preferably at least 1 capital and at least 1 number.
  • Don't share passwords with others.
  • Do not use easy to guess passwords such as "password" or something related to your name, partner's name, etc.
  • Do not use a password containing a sequence of letters or numbers.  For example, do not use 'abc123'.
  • Do not use birth dates.
  • Do not use a username in any form.
  • Use uppercase, lowercase, and numbers.  Note that some systems do not work well with "special characters" (e.g. punctuation) while others require such characters.
  • Change passwords every few months.
  • Substitute numbers for letters (Carolina becomes Carol1na or, even better, Carol8na (1 for "i" can be too obvious).  To make this password more effective, add numbers or another word: Carol8a732

Spam Messages

Fradulent email messages occasionally get sent out by comprimised accounts to the entire Chicago-Kent community.  These are usually phishing messages designed to trick you into giving your password by either clicking on a link or replying to a message.  Some safeguards you can take are below.

  • Never reply to e-mails that request personal information.
  • Always go directly to websites that require you to enter your private information - never click on a link in a suspect email.
  • Do not open attachments from unknown senders.
  • Be cautious of websites when requested to download components or applications.
  • Keep up-to-date with the latest Symantec Endpoint Protection updates and Microsoft Windows or Mac updates.

Virus/malware cleaning

The ITS has Symantec Endpoint Protection Antivirus available for faculty, staff and student use.  All faculty and staff computers as well as all public computers in the building have this antivirus installed.  The software will scan in the background, but we recommend you scan your computer regularly to ensure you are free of viruses and malware.  To install this software please contact the Help Desk at helpdesk@kentlaw.iit.edu, 312-906-5300 or create a ticket at www.kentlaw.iit.edu/pchelp.