Information Security At NCC

NCC Committment to Information Security

Northampton Community College is committed to safeguarding student data and ensuring your information is in your control. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact ITS at helpdesk@northampton.edu.

Helpful Tips

Passwords are the first line of defense

  • Hackers can guess weak passwords such as a pet’s name
  • A breach in one system can lead to breach of another, so use different passwords for bank, social media and here at NCC
  • Don’t use the same password for multiple accounts
  • Make passwords that are easy for you to remember but hard for someone to guess (the longer it is, the better)

Watch for phishing emails

  • Designed to get you to give up your password, or banking information.
  • Often come from an address that appears to be a contact or trusted source
  • Some have malicious links or attachments that could contain a virus.
  • Some purport to be lucrative job offer and ask for personal email address
  • Just delete! If it seems too good to be true it often is!
  • Watch this 2 minute video on Phishing

Run current software on your PC or device

  • Running outdated software and applications can allow devices to be infected
  • This can lead to theft of your data, personal info, and damage to device/PC
  • Keep operating systems patched with latest updates (Windows, MacOS, Linux, Android, etc.)
  • Run anti-virus and keep up to date
  • Don’t download programs from unknown sites

I’ve been hacked, what do I do?

  • If victim of phishing attack or scam, file a complaint with the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center
  • If bank info is compromised, inform your bank and local police
  • If email is unexpected/unsolicited, do not follow links! Just delete it!
  • Scammers stalk social media: use discretion when posting personal info
  • Remain vigilant and learn more at www.staysafeonline.org

External Resources

Are there programs I shouldn’t use?

Do not run any P2P or Torrent programs on the campus network. Do not attempt to install software on a college-owned computer (contact the help desk instead).

What is 2 factor authentication(2FA)?

The college uses 2FA as an additional level of security. Some systems require a username and password, as well as a second method to verify your identity (such as texting a temporary code to your mobile device).

How can I create a secure password?

Pick a strong password by thinking of a sentence and taking 1 st letter of each word.  Then add last 4 number of friends cell.  Ex: I really enjoy playing football.  Password would be Irepf4587. Add a special character for even greater strength, like @ ! & _. To keep track of your passwords, consider using a password manager like LastPass or BitWarden.

How do I know if a website I’m using is secure? Is my data safe in transit?

Always look for the "HTTPS" lock icon next to the URL for the site you are visiting. This ensures that the website you’re using is using encryption to keep your data safe while it is in transit. Learn More