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Security :: Information Security Office

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Keeping Campus Information Secure

Humboldt State University's Information Security Team works with the campus community to secure system and network resources and to protect the confidentiality of student, faculty, and staff information.

We collaborate with other ITS teams to manage account access control, establish policies, procedures and guidelines, and track, coordinate and mitigate responses to security incidents.


Possible fall-out from Anthem Blue Cross & Blue Shield breach

At this point, we do not know whether HSU employees' their personal information was exposed in the recent highly publicized attack on Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield's servers. What we do know is that some Anthem customers are being targeted by scammers, and that these targets may include HSU employees, regardless of whether HSU data was exposed as part of the breach.

Here are a few key points to remember in protecting yourself against possible scams:

  • If your information is affected, Anthem will notify you by postal mail, not by phone or email.

  • Always be vigilant about clicking on links or opening attachments in emails. If you're unsure, call the sender to determine the legitimacy of the communication.

More information here: http://www.ibj.com/articles/51707-anthem-warns-about-scam-emails-after-massive-hack

Take care when using anonymizing services

Anonymizing services like TOR, cyber Ghost, and others are becoming increasingly popular as we live more and more of our lives online. While you may have many reasons to be concerned about your online activity being tracked, you also incur some real risks when you use such services to access your HSU accounts.

Logging into a password-protected online resource that's tied to your real name through an anonymizing service undermines your anonymity. No matter whether that resource is HSU, another government agency, or a commercial Internet service, have no doubt that a valid law enforcement request for the identity of the person who logged in from a given internet address at a given time will be answered.

Anonymizing services also have an impact on how we combat phishing attacks. When a known compromised account logs in to the HSU networks from a given IP address, we watch for other user names logging in from that IP address and lock those accounts. The criminals behind phishing scams are starting to use anonymizing proxy services, and so there is a strong risk you'll get caught up in that whole mess and end up with a locked account.

If you want use these services at home on your personal devices, that's fine. But please don't mix them with your school or work activities - you'll actually undermine the anonymity you're trying to preserve and put yourself at risk.

Compromised accounts 

The HSU Information Security Team has a new procedure to streamline the restoration of compromised accounts. If you find that your account has been locked, contact the Technology Help Desk at 707-826-HELP (4357). They will help regain access to your account and reset your password and security questions if necessary. 

To unlock your Gmail account, you're required to take a short online training course Your account will be unlocked about an hour after the course has been completed. 

Phishing & Spam - Don't be a Victim

We urge you to not click on any links, graphics, or ads in emails you weren't expecting or otherwise don't recognize. If you do so by accident, please reset your HSU password and security questions immediately and report the message as spam or phishing. Here's how to do this in Gmail:

Graphic of Gmail how to add email to phishing filter

If you use Outlook as your email client, click on the Junk button in the toolbar (it’s usually towards the left) and choose Block Sender. 

If you discover you are the inadvertent sender of those emails, this usually means that your account has already been compromised. Please contact the Technology Help Desk at (707) 826-HELP (4357) immediately.

Here’s a list of the most recent spams and phishes we’ve seen. 


October 2014 - Emails reported:

  • Eureka Police Department press release 10/29/2014 warns of email scam requesting cash donations for kidney transplants using local church email address and administrative assistant names.
  • Email reported 10/8/2014: Subject: Security Information...Due to the strengthening our security system and improving your mailing experience, We have detected your mail settings...

September 2014 - Emails and phone scams reported:

August 2014 - Emails reported: 

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