Computer Safety

Email Safety

  • Use disposable email addresses (yahoo, hotmail, etc.) when registering for online services or websites. You will cut down on spam to your standard email address.
  • Do not respond to “opt-out” statements in email addresses unless you are comfortable that the sender is a reputable company.
  • Be sure that any mailing lists you subscribe to do not release the names of their members.
  • Avoid publishing your standard email address on blogs and other websites.
  • If you do not recognize the sender of the message and/or the subject line is senseless or offensive, delete the email.
  • Do not open attachments unless you are expecting them. Even if you know the sender, you should be very careful opening attachments. Although an email may look like it is from someone you know it is possible a spammer is spoofing their email address.

Password Protection

  • Strong unique passwords are important as the first line of defense between you and a hacker.
  • Do not use the same password on multiple sites.
  • Strong passwords can help you protect your computer and your identity.
  • Create passwords that are both easy for you to remember and also hard for someone else to discover.
  • Use a password manager to help you maintain strong passwords. Learn more about password managers.

Strong Passwords are:

  • at least 8 characters – the longer the better
  • contain uppercase & lowercase letters
  • contain non-alpha characters ($, %, &, !)
  • contain numbers

Strong Passwords are NOT:

  • variations of your name or login
  • dictionary words
  • names of your pets or family
  • easily discovered numbers such as license number, telephone number, your favorite TV show, etc…
  • all numbers or all lowercase letters

It is easy to create passwords that are both easy to remember and hard to break.
Gc4$/glS is an example of a good, strong password. It has a combination of uppercase and lowercase letters, it contains a number and non-alpha characters. This strong password can be remembered using a mnemonic.

G Gas
c cost
4 four
$ dollars
/ per
g gallon
l last
S Spring

Automatic Locking

Many computers have an automatic lock set by default. You should setup your computer to lock itself after a short period of inactivity to keep unauthorized users from accessing your machine.


To edit your automatic log on mac:
Click the apple icon
Open System preferences
Open Battery > Power Adapter>
Then select the time with the “Turn off display after” Slider to fit your needs. The shorter the time the better for security.


To edit your automatic lock on windows:
Go to your windows search bar.
Open Control Panel
Open Power Options > Change when the computer sleeps
Then edit the times to match your needs. The shorter the time the better for security.

Contact the Help Desk