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UNB launches cyber security awareness campaign to combat increased online threats

Author: Communications

Posted on Sep 30, 2015

Category: UNB Fredericton , UNB Saint John , myUNB , UNB Homepage , In the Media

Faced with increasing online threats and risks, the University of New Brunswick has launched a year-long cyber security awareness campaign to protect students, faculty and staff—as well as those in the community who want to know more about cyber security.

The campaign, which will launch tomorrow, Oct. 1, to correspond with National Cyber Security Awareness Month, includes an updated cyber security website, posters, contests that are designed to increase knowledge about online risks, and steps individuals can take to protect themselves and the university.

 “We’ll be covering topics like phishing and other fraud; mobile security; malware; and many others, including new technologies and new risks,” says Terry Nikkel, associate vice-president for Information Technology Services at UNB.

“We’ll use various channels to reach all our users with helpful tips, tricks, tools, resources, services, and news about IT security: Twitter, Facebook, websites, email, and so on will be prominent in our efforts.”

UNB and higher education institutions across North America are facing increasing cyber security threats from criminals, foreign governments, hacktivists and other malicious actors. UNB alone deals with more than 80 attempts per second to break into its network (or about 50 million a week), hundreds of thousands of attempts to exploit potential vulnerabilities in systems, and thousands of attempts to infect devices with malware or to steal user login information via phishing.

“Our security team deals with more than 300 significant IT security incidents every year, a number that continues to grow,” says Nikkel.

Online attackers frequently target UNB and other universities in order to steal personal information, intellectual property or confidential data. Attackers also seek to use the university infrastructure to launch attacks on other organizations. 

Effectively protecting the university will require the help of the entire community, says David Shipley, director of strategic initiatives at ITS and a member of the IT security team.

“The best defense we have against an increasingly hostile Internet environment is a well-informed, educated and empowered community,” says Shipley.  “It’s our hope that this campaign will increase the number of UNB students, faculty and staff who take advantage of our free online training course.”

UNB’s cyber security awareness campaign is part of a series of cyber security initiatives including new information security and data governance policies and a re-architecture of UNB’s network and IT security systems.

“ITS and the university are investing heavily to ensure a safe computing environment for students, faculty and staff for years to come; we will keep you up to date as these initiatives unfold, and as the IT security environment evolves to meet the needs of tomorrow,” says Nikkel. 

To learn more about UNB’s Cyber Security Awareness campaign, visit www.unb.ca/its/it-security/

 

Media Contact:


David Shipley

Director of Strategic Initiatives

1.506.478.1619

dshipley@unb.ca