Protecting Your Data

Policy on Data Security

Please review the TTU Policy on Data Security in order to understand the types of sensitive information you may be dealing with.

Desktop Machines in Offices

Your first line of security is a strong and long password phrase and a locked office whenever you leave it. When you leave your desk, lock the screen by holding down CTRL-ALT-DEL and clicking Lock Computer or if your machine is not in the domain, press the Windows logo key + L.

Most Windows XP machines in campus offices are tied to the TTU Domain (that means you log into your machine with your full email address and your Exchange server email password). Please do not use encryption programs on these computers until Information Technology Services enables encryption in the TTU Domain. You will receive instructions when this becomes available on how to do this. When this is enabled, ITS will be able to recover encrypted files, if needed, when an individual has forgotten their encryption password or has left the university. In the meantime, you can organize information on your computer so that confidential information resides in particular folders which are the ones that will be encrypted when this capability becomes available.

Flash Drives

First determine if you really need sensitive information on your flash drive. Second, no flash drive should be the sole location for any important data. Flash drives should serve only as a backup or means of transporting data when you are away from the office. If you lose or destroy your flash drive, the data should exist in another location, such as your office desktop computer. For any flash drive with encryption capabilities, you still need to choose a strong and long password phrase.

In order to protect sensitive data that may need to be placed on Flash Drives, Information Technology Services is STRONGLY recommending the use of Ironkey (https://www.ironkey.com/) flash drives. This product incorporates strong encryption in a physically secure drive using the Cryptochip. In addition, if an attempt is made to break into the drive, a full erase of all the data occurs via an overwriting process. This product can be purchased from many vendors including the manufacturer, Amazon, and others (see details).

Laptops

Your first line of security is a strong and long password phrase and a locked and secure location whenever you leave it. In the same way as for office desktop systems, Information Technology Services will be recommending encryption procedures for laptops in the near future.

Emailing sensitive data ON CAMPUS

From time to time it may be necessary to email sensitive data from one office to another.

  • First create a folder to keep the file in and copy the file to that folder.
  • Then right-click on the folder and select Send To - Compressed (zipped) Folder

  • This will create a second folder with a "zipper" on it.
  • Then double-click the compressed folder with the "zipper".
  • On the File menu, click Add a Password.
  • In the Password box, type a password. Be sure this is a long and strong password phrase.
  • In the Confirm Password box, type the password again.
  • Then use the zipped folder as the email attachment.
  • Call the recipient to share the password with them, so that they may open the file.
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