Since most people have their cell phones just about permanently attached these days, it’s easy to forget that we need to keep them secure.

The February edition of the IT Risk Bulletin, a joint effort of UAB, the University of Alabama, UAB Health System and the University of Alabama-Huntsville, provides dos and don’ts for phone and mobile device security.

Dos

• Enable security access.

• ONLY give your number out to people you know and trust.

• Use caller ID to block names and numbers of individuals you do not want to contact you.

• Delete emails that contain confidential or internal use information from your phone.

Don’ts

• Do NOT store confidential information on the phone, such as PIN numbers and credit card numbers.

• Do NOT take pictures or videos of anyone with your phone, or allow them to be taken of you, without permission.

• Never reply to text messages from people you don’t know and avoid in-person meetings with someone you know only through text messaging.

For more dos and don'ts and to see past issues of the bulletin, click here.

Work to repair telephone cables damaged during installation of a manhole last week is complete.

The damage caused an interruption of service to the Burleson Building and Building 912.

Crews worked after hours over the weekend to repair the damage.
Interested in a subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud software but need some lessons in how best to use the applications?

Adobe Creative Cloud subscriptions are available at a discounted rate through UAB IT. UAB’s Organizational Learning and Development office is offering several classes beginning this month to teach everything from the basics to more advanced techniques in Adobe Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator and Acrobat.

The Adobe Creative Cloud course descriptions can be found in the Computer Skills Course Catalog. Just click on the “Adobe Creative Cloud Classes” link in the Table of Contents.

The training will give users a chance to learn about existing features and new ways to use them, as well as learn about new features now available in Creative Cloud.

“This is a new, more comprehensive curriculum to match the software for new and experienced users alike,” said Michael Maner, manager of computer skills training for UAB Organizational Learning and Development.

To find the class schedule, search for “Adobe” in the online class schedule.

The courses are free for all UAB employees and UAB affiliates, who can sign up for courses through the Faculty and Staff Learning System.

Courses currently available include:

• What You Need to Know to Get Started with Adobe Photoshop CC; Beyond the Basics in Adobe Photoshop CC; Create Professional Layouts with Adobe InDesign CC; Creating Visually Compelling and Flexible Graphics Using Adobe Illustrator CC; and Create and Modify PDF Documents in Adobe Acrobat XI.

Classes available in the near future are Adobe InDesign CC Advanced Layout Techniques and Beyond the Basics in Adobe Illustrator CC.

Courses are for UAB employees only.

UAB IT is working to restore service to telephone cables damaged during installation of a manhole this morning.

The damage caused an interruption of service to the Burleson Building and Building 912, but service should be restored by the end of the day.

Full repairs to the damaged cable will be done after hours this weekend.
UAB IT is aware of problems with Outlook email and with web applications including IRAP and WAM and is working to resolve them quickly.
An e-mail sent to UAB accounts with the subject line “Your Email Account” appears to be a phishing attempt designed to steal personal information. The body of the e-mail includes the words "Security info replacement."

UAB IT is taking steps to prevent the further dissemination of e-mails from this sender, but reminds UAB employees remain vigilant to potential phishing scams.


The email asks users to click a link and enter their account information. UAB IT will never ask for account information in an e-mail.

spam
To report suspected spam to AskIT, please follow the instructions here

Follow these additional tips to avoid being a phishing victim:

• Do NOT click links in messages that ask you to log in. Type a trusted Web address in your browser or Google for the Web site if you don’t know the address.

• Never type personal, sensitive information (such as passwords or account numbers) on Web sites without verifying the Web site’s authenticity and security — look for an “https” in the address bar.

• Verify the address. Malicious Web sites may look identical to a legitimate site, but the address may use a variation in spelling or a different domain (.com vs. .edu).

• Misspellings and grammatical errors can be a dead giveaway in phishing emails and subject lines.

• If you are unsure whether a request is legitimate, contact the company directly. Do NOT use contact information provided in the request. 

• Don’t open attachments. They may contain viruses or malware that can infect your computer.

• Protect your password. Information security and IT officials at both the university and UAB Hospital will never ask users for passwords or any other sensitive information.

• Report suspicious activity. If you have any questions or you receive a suspicious email that you want to report, university employees and students can call the AskIT Help Desk at 205-996-5555.  Hospital employees can call the HSIS Help Desk at 205-934-8888.




Logging onto a public WiFi network might be convenient, but it can also be dangerous. Learn tips to protect yourself in to the latest issue of the IT Risk Bulletin.

The January issue of the bulletin, a joint effort of the of UAB, the University of Alabama, UAB Health System and the University of Alabama-Huntsville, provides dos and don'ts for joining a WiFi network.

Among the tips:

Dos
  • Before joining a network, ask an employee the official name of the business' WiFi. Be sure you are connected to the right WiFi spot and not a rogue location.
  • Select a secure WiFi network that requries a password to connect. A secure connection is indicated by an icon that looks like a lock.
  • Stay up-to-date with your antivirus software, applications and your system's security patches, especially before traveling.

Don'ts
  • Do NOT conenct to an unknown WiFi network.
  • Do NOT pay bills, access bank accounts or make purchases over public WiFi.
  • In Windows 7, do NOT select anything other than Public Network when setting a network location. Public Network blocks file and print sharing and turns off network discovery. This can be disabled in Mac OS X.

For more dos and don'ts and to see past issues of the bulletin, click here.
UAB IT will host a special collection to allow the University community to destroy old CDs, floppy disks and other digital media.

University staff and faculty can drop off digital media at the AskIT office at Cudworth Hall (CEC225) by noon on Thursday, Jan. 22.

Shred-It will be on site to dispose of the materials in a secure manner, in accordance with the UAB Records Retention Policy and Destruction of University Records Procedures.

Shred-It will be on site to collect the items after noon on Jan. 22.
With students back on campus after a long winter break, here’s a reminder about the various services UAB IT offers.

For more information about how to get started with services, visit the Student Quicklinks and Contacts page.

BlazerID and Password

If you need to change your BlazerID password, you can visit BlazerID Central at uab.edu/blazerid. Student passwords expire after 180 days, but you will receive multiple advance notifications of a pending password expiration date. Sign up for the Identity feature at BlazerID Central so that you can reset an expired password yourself.

BlazerNet

Using your BlazerID and password, log into BlazerNet, UAB's student portal, uab.edu/blazernet. From there you will be able to link to class registration, grades, financial aid and other academic resources.

Help Desk

For support with all things IT contact AskIT, UAB's IT help desk. Many self-help articles and FAQs are available on the AskIT Web site. To access the FAQs, open a ticket or chat with an agent visit uab.edu/askit,or call AskIT at 205-996-5555Hours of operation vary and are posted on the Web site.

Wireless Networks

Stay connected on campus by accessing the UAB WiFi network using your BlazerID and password: uab.edu/it/wireless. Dorm WiFi access is maintained by Apogee ResNet, not UAB IT. For information about how to contact Apogee, click here.

Thomas Anthony, director of the UAB Big Data Lab, will present an overview of the lab and its associated platforms and technology at the February meeting of the IEEE Computer Society. Thomas Anthony

Anthony will speak Thursday, Feb. 12, at the IEEE meeting, which begins at 6:30 p.m. at the Business & Engineering Complex, Room 154.

Anthony's talk will provide information about new computing technologies such as MapReduce, Hadoop, Pig and Spark, which are being used in business analytics and insights.

UAB Big Data Lab

The mission of the UAB Big Data Lab is to make infrastructure and software supporting state-of-the-art tools such as MapReduce, Hadoop, Pig and Spark available; to support a broad base of data analysis applications across UAB’s medical and other research centers; to provide core capability for the leveraging of genomic, microbiome and pathological images in the support of personalized medicine; to provide big data analytics services to a campus-wide community of researchers; to pursue cutting-edge research within the data science space in collaboration with advanced industrial collaborators; to establish an innovation incubator for big data analytics research, support and skill-building at UAB.

Thomas Anthony

Anthony is director of the Big Data Research and Analytics Lab in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at UAB. His research interests include big data analytics for brain mapping using magnetic resonance imaging, high-performance and high-throughput computation for scientific applications and simulation of wireless sensor networks. He has extensive expertise in scientific computing systems development and management.

His current projects are funded by pilot grants from the Michael J. Fox Foundation and the National Institute of Health for the detection of Parkinson’s Disease using imaging and by a compute allocation grant from the National Institute for Computational Sciences at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory. He is also part of Research Computing at UAB IT, which is tasked with developing and maintaining the high performance computing system at UAB. He also teaches courses in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.