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Shop safely! WVU employees shouldn’t use University credentials for holiday buying

To help faculty, staff and students shop online safely this holiday season, Information Technology Services offers several cybersecurity tips and an important reminder: NEVER use your University email account or Login credentials for personal online shopping. Although WVU’s Acceptable Use of Data and Technology Resources policy, does allow incidental personal use of University-owned computers if it doesn’t interfere with work, users should not expect privacy or confidentiality for such activities.

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Here are some tips for protecting yourself and your finances from cyber-theft. 

  • Lock down your login with strong passwords and two-factor authentication. Use separate personal accounts with separate passwords for banking and shopping. Strong passwords with unique phrases, numbers and special characters help, but that’s not enough. Learn more about two-factor authentication
  • Use only secure Wi-Fi. Logging into email and banking accounts on free, public Wi-Fi puts your information at risk. Make sure your phone has a security feature so no one can use it if you lose it. 
  • Shop only on secure websites. Look for the green lock icon and https:// in the web address before entering your credit card information on. The "s" means the site has security. 
  • Keep a clean machine. Ensure your phone, laptop and tablet have anti-virus protection. Running the most current version of software and apps can help prevent malware and infections. WVU provides free anti-virus software for up to three personal devices at freeav.wvu.edu
  • Use safe payment options. Credit cards are generally the safest payment option and offer protections that debit cards don’t. NEVER give your credit card information to anyone via email or save to your hard drive. 
  • When in doubt, throw it out. Be skeptical with suspicious-looking emails, even those claiming to come from a well-known company or shipping service. Phishing scams aimed at stealing your information are often cleverly designed. Don’t click on email attachments or links without verifying the company’s website is legitimate. 

Learn more about protecting yourself at DefendYourData.wvu.edu. Any suspicious-looking email sent to your WVU account should be forwarded as an attachment to DefendYourData@mail.wvu.edu.