Cyber Security Awareness Month

October has everything from the stunning beauty of fall colored landscapes to the haunting traditions of Halloween.  One can probably say the same things about the Internet.  It can be a wonderful resource, but can quickly become a source of nightmares when it comes to identity theft and other online exploits.

October has been designated as National Cyber Security Awareness Month by President Obama and is sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security.  As our society becomes more and more “connected” the potential for criminal activity grows exponentially.  We all need to have an awareness of this fact and be educated on how to protect ourselves.

How does this affect us here at Bucknell?  It just so happens that higher ed institutions are PRIMARY targets for cyber crime.  Why?  Well, for one thing we are very “connected” having fast and easy access to the Internet.  We also have a large population of young men and women on their own for the first time.  New bank accounts.  New credit cards.  Many post personal details about their lives online on a daily basis.

According to the Better Business Bureau, college students account for 25% of all identity theft victims.  What’s even more disturbing is they go an average of 132 DAYS before they realize it!  In that amount of time a lot of damage can be done.

We invite you to view our National Cyber Security Month feature on the Library and IT website:

http://www.bucknell.edu/script/lit/initiatives/

Throughout the rest of October we will be highlighting tips, resources, and offering advice there and in the Message center about how we all can better protect ourselves online.  After all, would you rather describe your online experiences  “… like the strength and beauty of a majestic oak in autumn…” or “…like a hollowed out jack-o-lantern with the guts scraped out quickly decaying…”?

Be safe out there.  😉

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