Top 10 Cybersecurity Tips for Students

Your actions online can impact the safety and security of you, your friends, your family and the entire FSU community. Here are ten tips to help you—and everyone around you—stay cybersafe.

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Protect your passwords

Create different passwords for different sites and use a combination of letters, numbers and symbols to make them hard to guess. Consider using a password manager, such as LastPass, to remember and store all your passwords for you. And never share your passwords with anyone, including close friends.

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Do not respond to suspicious messages

Be wary of emails that require "immediate action" or ask for personal information. If an email job offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Report any messages that look suspicious to Then delete the message and back away.

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Limit activities on public Wi-Fi

Never use public Wi-Fi to access or enter sensitive information, such as online banking or any site where you need to log in. Use the FSUSecure network on campus and consider using a virtual private network (VPN) to lock down your connection when traveling.

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Avoid oversharing on social media

Sharing too much information, such as indicating when you are on vacation or away from home, can make you an easy target for #burglary. You should regularly check and adjust your privacy settings on your accounts so only friends and people you know see your updates.

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Use 2-factor authentication

If a site or app offers you the ability to set up 2-factor authentication when signing in, do it. This extra layer of security will require you to verify your identity twice before you can access sensitive information, like the experience when signing in to your FSU email or myFSU Portal.

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Keep apps and software up to date

Set up automatic updates for your computer and mobile devices and regularly restart them to give them a chance to complete the update process. Make sure you are also backing up your files in case something happens in the process. Set up automatic backups of your device and store the backup to a cloud service or external hard drive.

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Protect personal information

Sensitive browsing, such as banking, should be done only on a device that belongs to you on a network you trust. Do not use a friend's phone, public computer or coffee shop’s Wi-Fi if you are going to be entering passwords or credit card information, as your data could be copied or stolen.

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Be a savvy online shopper

Always use a secure or private Wi-Fi network to shop online. Look for the lock symbol next to the web address before entering payment information and use a credit card or secure payment site like PayPal—not a debit card—to complete transactions.

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Be alert

Always be alert! Use common sense when clicking links, opening attachments, visiting websites or responding to emails and phone calls. Be conscious of what you plug into your computer, as malware can spread through infected flash drives, external hard drives and cellphones.

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Be a good online citizen

What you do online has the potential to affect everyone—at home, at school and around the world. Always be courteous and conscious of the words you use and practice good online manners.