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Cornell University

Recognize and Prevent Cybercrime

Steps to protect yourself from cybercrime

This article applies to: National Cybersecurity Awareness Month

Learn how to protect yourself online and help guide others in the right direction. Stay #CyberAware and #BeCyberSmart. Your digital footprint matters.

Online attackers often impersonate trusted individuals to trick people into revealing their passwords, releasing other sensitive information, or infecting their devices. If you or someone you know receives a suspicious or unusual email from a supposedly trusted source, Stop.Think.Connect. Try contacting the sender or business offline by calling, visiting, or some other means to verify the information directly.

Share with care. Before you share information online, think about how you'd feel if it ended up somewhere you didn’t intend. When browsing new websites, take an informed, critical approach to help you decide whether they are definitely what they claim to be.

Use strong passwords or passphrases. Passphrases are complex, hard to guess, and easy to remember. To learn more, read this illustrated example. Also, remember that LastPass secure password management is free to all current Cornell students, faculty, and staff.

Keep your devices and apps up to date. Manufacturers and software developers often patch security holes in their products, but they only work if you apply them. Stay current with notifications for your computer and mobile devices informing you of updates waiting to install, and act as soon as they're available.


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At Cornell we value your privacy. To view
our university's privacy practices, including
information use and third parties, visit University Privacy.