Keeping Your E-Mail Account Safe
We have seen an increase in the number of e-mail accounts that have been “hijacked” by viruses and malicious sites on the web. When an e-mail account is hijacked by a virus or malicious web site, it is used to send out thousands of spam messages! When Information Technology is notified of this, we immediately suspend the compromised e-mail account from sending messages until the issue is resolved, usually up to 5 business days from when the issue is detected. During the time that the e-mail account is suspended, a loss of e-mail may occur.
How will I know if my e-mail account has been compromised?
Our spam system notifies us of any e-mail accounts that appear to have been compromised. The Help Desk will then notify you directly. We will change your password immediately and your account will be suspended from sending e-mail until all computers you use to access e-mail have been scanned for viruses and are reported as virus-free. We will send a technician to your office to clean your on-campus computer of viruses and will ask you to run virus scans on any off-campus computer you have used to access your e-mail account. You may also bring your off-campus computer to our Face-to-Face support area for assistance with virus removal (visit www.ccsu.edu/its to make an appointment). Please be aware that during the time that the e-mail account is suspended, a loss of e-mail may occur.
How can I prevent my e-mail account from being compromised?
Here are some ways to stay safe on the Internet and keep your e-mail account from being compromised:
- First and most important, do not share your BlueNet account username and password with anyone or enter your BlueNet account information on ANY unknown web site. We will never ask for your password, especially via an e-mail message!
- Choose strong passwords that cannot be easily guessed, change your password often, and don’t write them down or store them on the computer!
- Install an anti-virus software and keep it up to date. We offer McAfee Anti-Virus + Anti-Spyware for free (visit www.ccsu.edu/its/downloads to get a copy for your off-campus computer).
- Do not open e-mail attachments or respond to e-mail messages from unknown senders.
- Do not install free software from the Internet without verifying that it is legitimate – many “free” software packages come loaded with spyware and adware.
- Beware of clicking on messages from pop-up windows on the Internet. Many disguise themselves as legitimate security warnings, but are actually viruses, adware, or spyware.
- Do not navigate to unsafe web sites. On campus, we use McAfee site advisor to help you determine which sites are safe. We highly recommend you install this free add-on at home as well (visit www.siteadvisor.coom).
- Be sure to run Windows updates and software updates, including any security patches.
The best way to protect your account from being compromised is to stay cautious, especially on the Internet. If there are other people using the same computer you use to access your CCSU e-mail account, please share these tips with them so they can also help keep your e-mail account safe.