There are several methods of Data Protection the RIIT Group recommends to safeguard your data and computer from hackers to minimize attacks/exposure and to recover your data in the event of an attack.
We are constantly being inundated with emails containing viruses, spyware, Trojans at an increasing rate everyday. As part of your defense against these threats, we strongly recommend installing a reputable antivirus software on your computer. All Smeal machines have Symantec Endpoint Protection installed as part of our setup process. As Smeal faculty/staff, you are able to install that same software on your home machine. Please check https://downloads.its.psu.edu under Virus/Detection Spyware Tools and choose Symantec AntiVirus. Please note, you must regularly run LiveUpdate in order to obtain the latest definition files. In addition, we’ve included some tips below that should help in keeping your office or home computer virus-free.
If you suspect that your computer is infected by a virus/worm, please remove it from the network immediately, by disconnecting the blue network cable from your computer and call the RIIT Group as soon as possible at 865-0366.
Some helpful tips:
File backup is crucial to protecting your data in the event of a hard disk failure or inadvertent file deletion. Penn State offers a centralized backup system (Tivoli Storage Manager or TSM) that works over the network to backup what you want, when you want and all in an automated process that works over the network. It is very inexpensive, $.03 per gigabyte, per month and is stored in secure tape libraries with failsafe backup systems by central IT. The college is in the process of setting up a required TSM account for all academic departments within Smeal and to be subsidized by the Dean’s Office. More information on this will follow.
Internet Privacy and Security (IPAS) at Penn State
The Information Privacy and Security (IPAS) project is a University-wide mission to enhance the data security practices at Penn State.
Data Classification Scheme
The primary project goal of the Data Classification Scheme is to assure the privacy of critical information and to comply with internal policies and external regulations affecting Penn State.
There are two phases to the IPAS Project:
The Information Privacy and Security (IPAS) Project is sponsored by the Office of Security Operations and Services, a unit of ITS, and the Privacy Office, a unit of the Corporate Controller Office.
The Smeal College has been tasked with ensuring that all machines on the PSU network and any machine used for PSU work is scanned to help mitigate the risk of personally identifiable information or PII loss. Scanning is done via a client-server application that scans systems for SSNs, credit cards, and bank account information. Overall, the results can be used to help identify and remove or protect such Personally Identifiable Information (PII), which could have a significant impact on areas such as eDiscovery and regulatory compliance reporting.
You may already have or soon will be receiving your scanning reports. They will be accompanied by instructions that will aid you in removing any PII found on your machine. They will be accompanied by a certification form where you can sign off that you have removed all PII to the best of your knowledge
In the case of a compromised machine (i.e. hacked, virus infected and sending out info on the network, etc.) the PSU security office will inform us and ask us to run a more intensive scan on the computer. If any PII is found on the machine, we may be asked to provide the hard drive to the security office for forensic analysis. In most cases, it results in notifications that have to be made to the SSN holders whose PII may have been compromised. This can be very harmful to the University and to the College in terms of reputation and in monetary terms as well. Thus, it is imperative that you remove any existing PII from your computers.