ONLY YOU CAN PREVENT Badness!

MALWARE, PHISHING, VIRUSES: It’s true, there are bad people out there that will do bad things to your computer and by extension, to you.  And yes, they make it very easy for even the most sophisticated to fall prey to their shenanigans.  But in the end, it all comes down to what YOU DO.

There’s a great resource for this topic at “Staysafeonline.org

Remember the cost of lax security is no security.  Just as the saying of “liberty fails when good people do nothing”… yeah a bad paraphrase … so it is with your computer.  If you do nothing to maintain your system, you will find it will function worse and worse over time. YOU MUST KEEP IT UP TO DATE and you must use restraint to NOT CLICK ON THAT ENTICING STUFF that claims to be from a friend you never knew, or from a system administrator from your bank or elsewhere. Just don’t do it.

NOT SO SMART THINGS: In addition to the above “badness” there is the innocent badness that comes from happy (and sad) people adding software that they don’t NEED to have to their computers.  Yes the same computers that they are relying upon for LAW SCHOOL notes, LAW SCHOOL exams, and maybe even the BAR EXAM! These people are adding variables to their systems that can cause real problems down the line on their computers.  Don’t install a bunch of games, music and video applications, and file sharing applications and expect your system to be reliable. All these additional variables ADD TO YOUR RISK for Badness.  When you find out that Spotify or uTorrent or your Minecraft server were responsible for your crash in your remedies final exam or the loss of your Torts outline, you will not be happy. You will be sad. Sad due to Badness.

The fewer variables you have on your system, the fewer chances you have of badness.

If you HAVE to HAVE a computer for games.  We strongly suggest a second computer.

Using your Phone/Tablet with WiFi at Pepperdine

Many new students don’t realize that if they register their devices as Data Plan Blues“GUEST USER” on the university wireless network they will need to register again the next day.  Guest WiFi network registration expires every 24 hours.

If you register as an authenticated user (enter your wavenet ID and password), your registration will last much longer (up to a year if you are a frequent user on the network).

Note that with the WiFi data, you will save on your device’s data plan limits.

Once the temporary “Guest” registration expires after 24 hours, make sure you select “Current Students, Faculty, and Staff” on the https://wavesconnect.pepperdine.edu site.

NOTE: you cannot re-register a device after it is already registered.  It must time-out first so don’t try to re-register until your Guest access expires.  If you run into trouble, please call the University Help Desk at (310) 506-HELP or 310-506-4357.

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Backup Your Data Right Now

Since I’m passing on good material from other blogs, here’s another. Legal Geekery has a great post entitled Backup Your Computer Right Now. He recommends SugarSync. If you want a personal service, I’d recommend Mozy or DropBox (which I personally use).

Most law students take all of their notes and compile their outlines on laptop computers. However, it seems few law students bother backing up their data. Without backing up, law students are gambling with all of that irreplaceable data. Some people back their data up using a thumb drive which they then keep in their laptop bag. This is insufficient. If you keep your backup data in the same place as your laptop, they could both get stolen or ruined at the same time. Not backing up your data? You’re playing Russian roulette with your data and most likely your grades. Don’t do it.

We recommend that you do more than just use a digital backup.  You should also print out your outlines periodically and yes, USE A SERVICE.

But you don’t need to go out and get your own service. Here at Pepperdine we offer 30 gigs of great online anywhere available storage! You can access it from google.pepperdine.edu

 

More info on Google Drive as well as all the Pepperdine Google Services can be found here: http://community.pepperdine.edu/it/tools/storage/googledrive.htm

Game Systems on the Network (residence halls)

In order to connect your gaming console to the University Network, you must first register the device.

It is very similar to registering your computer or smart phone except you must enter the “media access control” or MAC address manually using a device like your computer or smartphone.

Go to https://wavesconnect.pepperdine.edu 

and select the “Game and DVR Devices” link and follow the instructions.
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Enter your network login ID, your network password and your game system or other device’s MAC address and you’ll soon be in business.  Keep in mind, you have to do this once a year for these kinds of devices.  It’s not permanent.

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If you need help finding your MAC address for your system, check out this resource.

Security: Protecing Your Laptop

sophosbadgeViruses, worms, ad-ware and spyware, and theft, are examples of SEVERE risks to your computer in a public, networked environment. You MUST PERFORM THE STEPS LISTED BELOW if you wish to use your computer at Pepperdine or you could face repercussions including loss of network access, data loss, and system failure.

  1. Maintain up-to-date virus protection software on your computer. The University’s IT department supports Sophos for faculty and staff for students, University IT recommends Microsoft Security Essentials for Windows and Sophos AntiVirus for Macs.
  2. Regularly install all Critical Updates from http://update.microsoft.com. You should begin checking Microsoft Update constantly, starting now. You can also configure your Windows computer to check automatically for updates every time you connect to the Internet.
  3. Keep Adobe Flash & Reader and Java Updated. A great browser-based tool for checking how current your web-related tools are is Qualys Browser Check.
  4. Keep your computer’s operating system and office products up-to-date
  5. Do not install peer-to-peer file-sharing software or other high-risk programs. Attempt to eliminate any programs that might already be installed by running a spyware/adware removal product such as Spybot Search & Destroy or Ad-aware.
  6. Buy and use a computer security cable for your computer to lock it down when it is not attended. (Alarm-equipped cables are NOT recommended.) We highly recommend that you never leave your belongings alone, especially in quiet areas like the Law Library, as the School of Law is open to the public.
  7. Do not click on links in unsolicited email messages
  8. Do not open an email attachment unless you are expecting it or have checked with the sender.