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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

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One Step Ahead: Almanac Security Tips - 2014

In each issue, Penn's Journal of Record, The Almanac publishes helpful tips and hints for dealing with information security and privacy matters. This page is a collection of all those published thus far.
New! You can now receive new One-Step-Ahead Security and Privacy Tips automatically!
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Table of Contents (view all)

Heartbleed OpenSSL Vulnerability
Security and Privacy Tips for World Travelers
Filing Taxes Online This Year? Take Steps to Protect Your Information!
If your computer runs Windows XP, you must update it now!
Why Should You Report Security Incidents? And How Do You Report One?
Photo and Video Privacy Issues
The Password is Dead, Long Live the Password!
Data Privacy Month: NSA Surveillance Panel at the National Constitution Center
Protecting Your Finances During This Yearís Holiday Shopping Season
Beware of Phishing E-mails in the Wake of Typhoon Haiyan
No E-mail from Penn Will Ask For Your Username/Password or SSN
The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act: Does It Apply to Your Website?
October: National Cyber Security Awareness Month; Free Secure Disposal of Paper and Electronics
What Basic Rules Protect Student Information at Penn? (September 2013)
Protecting Privacy and Security on Penn + Box

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Tagged with patching , home computing

Tuesday, October 30, 2007 - Almanac Vol. 54, No. 10

Older Computers at Higher Risk for Security Breaches

Your home computer from 2001 may seem to be chugging along fine, doing everything you need it to do, but saving a few bucks by keeping an outdated computer in service could cost you in the long run. Older computers connected to the Internet are at a higher risk for security and privacy breaches than newer systems. Moreover, it is a violation of University policy to put confidential research or administrative data onto a computer that cannot be properly secured.

Here are a few ways in which older computers are vulnerable:

  • Manufacturers like Apple and Microsoft routinely retire operating systems (OSs). After a specific date, they stop releasing security updates for older products, leaving the computers they run on and the data stored on them exposed. Microsoft officially supports, and therefore supplies patches for, Windows XP and Vista; Apple only supports OSs newer than 10.2. Older OSs like Windows 2000, Windows Me, Windows NT, and Windows 98 cannot be patched and are vulnerable to attack. Older versions of applications such as MS Office could pose risks as well.
  • Modern OSs have built-in firewall software, which plays an integral part in protecting your computer and data. Firewalls are activated by default by the manufacturer. A few years ago the technology wasnít even available.
  • More secure versions of web browsers like Firefox and Internet Explorer 7.0 require processor speeds and RAM not available in older computers. They also include pop-up blockers and trusted site lists to keep your web traffic secure.

Older hardware is a time bomb. Itís unreliable, slow, and next to impossible to secure. Isn't it time to treat yourself to an upgrade?


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