Macs and Windows Vulnerable to Ransomware

Infected ECU computers will be wiped

Unless you’ve been stranded on a desert island for the last few weeks, you know that ransomware is a global threat affecting vulnerable Windows and Mac computers. Yes, even the Macintosh OS can be infected by this insidious malware that locks your system, encrypts your data and infects the network to which you are connected. While this threat may seem scary and overwhelming, there are ways to circumvent being a victim. Read on to get started.

How Does Ransomware Work?

The user clicks on a malicious link or document that triggers the ransomware code. If the computer’s software is unpatched and unprotected, the worm finds its way in and looks for files to encrypt. After encrypting your files, it then moves on to the network to find other Mac or Windows targets.

If the ransomware cannot encrypt anything or access the network, it can go dormant until triggered.

Even if you pay the ransom, and the files are decrypted, the thieves may have left a way to reinfect your system at a later date in order to extort more money from you.

What Happens if Your ECU Computer Becomes Infected?

If your ECU computer becomes infected with ransomware, ITCS cannot recover your data. The hard drive will be wiped and all data will be lost.

How Can You Protect Yourself?

Following these tips for your ECU or personal computer will go a long way toward protecting your system from ransomware.

  1. Do not store ECU data on your computer.
  2. Create and manage a backup for data that is stored on the system.
  3. Do not open spam emails or emails from unknown senders.
  4. Do not download or open attachments from suspicious emails.
  5. Do not click links in suspicious emails.
  6. Keep your operating system up to date.
  7. Keep Symantec EndPoint Protection up to date. It is also available for your personal computer from the ECU Download Center.
  8. Turn off administrative privileges on your computer account. Use a separate account with higher level privileges if needed.
  9. Remove outdated plugins in your web browsers.

While not completely fool-proof, these actions go a long way toward keeping your data safe from hackers.

Need more help or have questions? Contact the IT Help Desk at 252.328.9866 | 800.340.7081.

“On Premises” WebEx Transitions to WebEx Cloud June 30, 2017

WebEx serves as a feature-rich web conferencing tool for ECU users. On Friday, June 30, 2017, ITCS finalizes the transition from our current “on premises” version to the new WebEx Cloud. After this transition on June 30, the on premises WebEx version will no longer be available.

WebEx Cloud continues the convenience of Outlook scheduling, desktop sharing, audio or video calling, and adds several NEW features:

You Can Transition Now

WebEx Cloud is now live, so you may wish to start using the new interface. Also, after June 30, any scheduled meetings or recordings stored on the WebEx “on premises” server will no longer be available, so you will need to manually move these items as soon as possible.

Get Started with These Four Tasks

Complete these four tasks before the June 30 transition:

Explore your virtual personal meeting room

  1. From webex.com, click the log In link under the ECU logo. Your personal meeting room opens.
  2. Click the floating arrow at the top to open the menus.
  3. Choose the My WebEx tab to access your profile, preferences and support.

Install WebEx Cloud productivity tools

  1. First, uninstall the current WebEx productivity tools on your computer (this is important).
  2. Click the Meeting Center tab.
  3. From the Support drop-down, choose Downloads.

Reschedule meetings

Manually reschedule any meetings in the current WebEx version to WebEx Cloud as they will be unavailable after Friday, June 30.

Download recordings

Download any recorded meetings from WebEx on premises to Piratedrive or OneDrive storage as they will be unavailable after June 30. Both Piratedrive and OneDrive are approved for storage of FERPA information with Piratedrive approved for other sensitive information as well.

  1. Log in to the on premises WebEx: ecuwebex.edu.edu.
  2. Click the Recordings.
  3. Click the drop-down menu beside a recording. Choose Download.
  4. The recording downloads to your computer.
  5. Save recordings to your ECU online storage, then remove recordings from your computer.

Have questions or a problem? Submit a WebEx Teleconference Support service request.

To learn more about WebEx Cloud, visit the WebEx Meeting Center Help Central website.

Video and Web Conferencing

ECU supports several solutions for online meetings, including dedicated conference rooms and classrooms for groups or software that connects two or more individuals through a desktop, laptop or mobile device. Most tools include video, audio, whiteboard and screen sharing.

Here’s what you need to know

Dedicated hardware

High-definition cameras, multiple audio inputs, desktop computers and other equipment permanently set up in dedicated conference rooms or classrooms.

Desktop conferencing

Two or more individuals meet online through a software program or app installed on a desktop, laptop or mobile device. Most conferencing software also allows users to dial in to a meeting using a VoIP telephone for an audio connection. Available device hardware such as webcams and microphones determine how users connect.

Conference room/classroom

Equipped with dedicated AV equipment to connect two or more participant groups.
Find an ECU conference room through the Classroom Technology database.
Schedule a classroom or conference room by emailing the team at videoconferencing@ecu.edu. Techs set up the room and provide support, as needed.

Sensitive information

A conferencing tool, whether hardware or software, must be approved for use with certain types of information. Your solution may depend on whether or not meeting topics include HIPAA, FERPA or other sensitive information. To learn more, visit the sensitive data website.