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Beware of “smishing,” the text-based form of phishing

It's Cybersecurity Awareness Month, and a good time to become aware of "smishing," which is a word blend of "SMS" (short message services, also known as texting) and "phishing." When cybercriminals "phish," they send fraudulent emails that aim to trick the recipient into opening a malware attachment or clicking on a malicious link, and they “smish” when they try to engage potential victims in the same way via text messages.

See Yourself in Cyber: October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month

National Cybersecurity Awareness Month is held every October to raise awareness about staying safe and secure online. The theme for 2022 is “See Yourself in Cyber,” which means that you should do your part to protect cyberspace, no matter what role you play.

Take these simple steps to improve your online security and protect your personal information, connected devices, and university data:

It’s back to school and IET is sharing messages focused on the student tech experience

UC Davis students are heading back to school, and the Information & Educational Technology (IET) communications team has prepared a slate of 13 messages to orient them to technology on campus. The short messages promoting IET services and security awareness are intended to keep students informed throughout the academic year.

The messaging to students will appear on social media and on digital screens in Memorial Union, the Student Community Center, Shields Library, the residence halls, and in IET's computer labs.

Registration for SITT 2022 is open

The Summer Institute on Teaching and Technology (SITT) returns for 2022 on Sept. 8 and 9. Join Academic Technology Services (ATS) on the mornings of Sept. 8 and 9 for live presentations by UC Davis faculty. You are invited now to browse the on-demand faculty talks and interviews on the SITT website.

Don’t forget that Botrock is ready to help, 24/7

In early 2021, Information & Educational Technology (IET) introduced Botrock to UC Davis. She’s the helpful and tech-savvy chatbot that makes her home on the Service Hub as well as other websites.

Not only can Botrock answer your tech questions directly in her chat box, but she has other skills too, like providing links to Knowledge Base articles and AggieVideos for more comprehensive help, as well as opening support tickets. As Botrock matures, she will gain more knowledge and skills, and will be able to help even more.

Report phishing messages directly from Outlook or DavisMail

If you receive a suspicious email that you think might be phishing, there’s a way that you can immediately report it within your email program. You no longer have to forward potential phishing messages to the UC Davis Information Security Office because you can do it yourself from Outlook or Gmail (DavisMail).

This Knowledge Base article provides instructions for reporting messages from the email program you use at UC Davis. Reporting emails like this helps stop malicious emails from reaching other people on campus.

Act now to protect against potential cyberattacks

In response to the risk of Russian cyberattacks increasing due to the war in Ukraine, the White House has published a list of recommendations for organizations in the U.S. to prepare for security threats.

Tax season is here: Avoid the “Dirty Dozen” Tax Scams

UC Davis' Information Security Office wants campus affiliates to review the Internal Revenue Service annual “Dirty Dozen” list of tax scams. The IRS emphasizes that they “continue to see scam artists use the pandemic to steal money and information from honest taxpayers in a time of crisis.” The IRS estimates that identity thieves have stolen billions via tax fraud. Don’t become another victim!

Be on the alert for: 

External Email Tagging will be added to Office 365 in December

Email attacks often begin with messages from an external email system. As part of UC Davis’s effort to reduce phishing and other email scams, Information & Educational Technology (IET) will begin tagging emails that originate from outside the University.