Two women behind their screens

Photo credit: Anna Logue

General Security Advice

What you should know

Small actions can make a big difference for information security. The information and tips given here will help you to establish basic protection for yourself and the information you are dealing with. For the best possible protection you should also observe our additional security tips.

Security tips

Information security 101

1. Common sense

Use your common sense! When you are requested to do something (disclose your data or information, open links, etc.), it always makes sense to pause and think twice.

2. Strong passwords

Create a secure, unique password with at least 10 characters for each service you use. More information on the creation of secure passwords and the use of a password manager can be found on our subpage.

3. Minimization principle

As little as possible as much as necessary! You are always reducing potential damage, if you stick to the minimization principle when installing programs, granting or using rights or disclosing information and files.

Man and laptop
Photo credit: Anna Logue

Tip:  Minimize your own rights. You should never do your daily work while you are logged in on an administrator’s account.

4. Virus scanner

An updated virus scanner is part of the standard equipment of every computer. Please make sure that you have a virus scanner installed at all times. Caution! An outdated virus scanner does not offer sufficient protection. Please check regularly if there are updates available and scan your system after you installed the updates.

Two employees behind their screens
Photo credit: Anna Logue

Tip: The University IT provides employees of the university with Bitdefender as virus scanner for their work computers.

5. Updates

Attackers use programming errors / bugs in computer programs to infect your system with malware. Therefore it is indispensable that you regularly update all programs installed on your computer and the Windows system itself and that you install the latest security patches.

6. Secure surfing

You should not enter any personal information on unknown or dubious websites. Please check links carefully before clicking.

Women in front of a locked laptop screen
Photo credit: Anna Logue

Tip: Press the Windows key and L at the same time to lock your computer.

Windows + L – lock your screen!

7. Protection against data theft

Please lock your computer if you leave your desk and please lock your office even if you’re leaving for only a short amount of time. Protect confidential data on your computer and on external storage devices by encrypting the data.

8. Data backup

You should regularly back up your data so that you can access your data even in case your computer or an external storage medium is broken. You can find more information on how to back up your system on the website of the University IT.

9. Data destruction

Always dispose of confidential documents which you no longer need in a confidential waste bin. The same applies to external data carriers. There is a separate confidential waste bin for these data carriers. Disposal in a confidential waste bin is the only way to guarantee adequate destruction.

The Information security 101 is also available as PDF for download so that you can put it up in your office for easy reference.

Information materials and downloads