Tech Tip

Phishing and Spam Reminder

A particularly tricky, and highly believable, phishing email has been making its way through our campus email filters recently.  What people are receiving are attachments that are fake invoices and banking documents that look real, but they are meant to harm your computer.  The attachments contain malware, programs that can mess up your computer and/or steal confidential information.

So far, Sophos (our Antivirus and Anti-Malware software) has been blocking the malware when a user inadvertently opens an attachment (hopefully it is intercepting all of them).  This has prevented the malware from doing any damage, but we don’t want to put Sophos to the test any more.

If your computer starts acting up with unusual behavior (e.g., strange popups or unusual ads in web pages, etc.), please give the IT Help Desk a call.

How to spot phishing emails and spam

There are a few tell-tale signs you can look for to determine if an email is a phishing attempt and/or spam:

  • You were very likely not expecting an email regarding an end of month statement, an invoice for something recently purchased, or a money transfer.
  • The email is from a bogus email address.  This is not always the case, but if it looks like something just isn’t right, err on the side of not trusting it and call the Help Desk.
  • The source for the download (if there is a link) does not match the sender or even a well-known source.  Sometimes, an email mixes legitimate links (like www.westernunion.com) in with not-legitimate ones (www.somethingyouhaveneverheardofbefore.com), so you have to be sure to read, and pay attention to, the entire email and entire link.
  • There are obvious spelling and/or grammatical errors, but that is not always the case.
  • The email just doesn’t make sense or sounds too good to be true.  Why would anyone just want to wire transfer $5,000 to me from Europe or Africa if I just give them my information?

Tips for sending messages so your recipients do not think your message is spam

  • If you attach a document, make sure you tell your recipient  that you are attaching the document and perhaps offer a brief description of the contents.
  • If sending links, stick to well-known web sites or clarify if the sites are not.

What do I do if I receive a phishing attempt or spam?

  • If you can tell it is spam or a phishing attempt, please forward it to the helpdesk@malone.edu and then you can discard the message. Do not click any of the links.
  • If you are getting a lot of spam, let the IT Help Desk know
  • If you are not sure whether an email message is legitimate, you can contact the help desk or even forward it to helpdesk@malone.edu

What if I opened a phishing attempt that asks my password or to reset my password or clicked on a link?

If you find yourself having given your password out to someone through a phishing attempt or clicked on a link, you should…

  1. Call the help desk immediately and let us know what has happened.
  2. Change your password immediately. You can go to https://userid.malone.edu <–note the malone.edu address indicating that the link is legitimate, or
  3. You can also go to www.malone.edu and use the “Account Management” link located under the Malone Xpress log in page.
  4. Contact us at the IT Help Desk, letting us know that your account might have been compromised, so that we can monitor it for suspicious activity.

Remember that our office will NEVER EVER ASK for your password.

Any emails from help desk to the community will always come from helpdesk@malone.edu

Please contact the IT Help Desk if you have any questions or issues. We can be reached via email at helpdesk@malone.edu , via the web at http://www.malone.edu/helpdesk or by phone at 330.471.8428.

 

 

Picture Directories of the Courses you are teaching

Hello Faculty:

Tired of taking pictures of your class on the first day or painstakingly copying and pasting Phiz pictures into a spreadsheet so that you can learn the names of your new students?  Use a feature of the Phiz (added fall of last year) that allows you to automatically generate a picture directory of the students enrolled in your course!

You can view an automatically generated picture and other information course list from the “My Groups” function of the Phiz. See FAQ241 for a step by step procedure.

Printing Posters or Large Pages


This Tech Tip answers a question that has been asked many times, “What are my options for printing posters or pages larger than the standard letter and legal pages?” Find out the answer HERE.

Malone Wallpaper

Malone Wallpaper and Templates

Want to give your audience a Malone experience in your next presentation?  We have Malone-ified Word and PowerPoint templates, and Wallpaper for your computer desktop, available to download in Malone Xpress.

Here is where to go to get them:

  • Sign in to Malone Xpress
  • Select the Information Technologies tab
  • Under Things to Download, click on the file that you would like to use

 

Setting up Secure Passwords

We invite you to take a quick moment to review the following Tech Tip on the Password Policy for setting up secure passwords.

Strong passwords are the front line protection for all user accounts at Malone.  A poorly chosen password may result in the compromise of Malone University’s entire network. Therefore, the Malone University community–including faculty, staff, students, contractors and vendors with network accounts and/or any form of access that supports or requires a password for any system within Malone’s network–is responsible for taking the appropriate steps as outlined HERE to select and secure their passwords.

Resources for Presentations

Hello Students, Faculty, and Staff:

Learning how to discover, develop, and share ideas and then doing it is what higher education is all about. When we work within the context of Malone’s Mission Statement, that means that we could be changing the lives of the people who surround us. Presenting concepts and ideas in a clear and coherent way is how we “close the loop” in our personal, academic, and professional endeavors.

We hope that what you see below will help you in your quest for delivering content clearly and effectively.

Improving “the look” of Presentations

Malone University Presentation Templates

Especially if you are representing Malone at a conference or to an outside group, you may want to use a ‘Malonified’ PowerPoint or Keynote template. You can download these from the Information Technologies tab of Malone Xpress.

Poster Presentations: Wide-format printing and tools for authoring

There are a thousand different methods for putting together a poster presentation. The Information Technologies and Media Services Help Desk can assist you in the creation of items for your board. You might also choose to create your presentation using a layout program like Adobe InDesign available in several of the computer labs and can be installed on other Malone-owned computers.

When you have completed your file, you will need to PRINT IT. You can print up to 11″x17″ full color prints on campus. We have partnered with a local company called Repros to do larger. Visit FAQ183 to get pricing information and contact information. They can print 24″x36″ or even 36″x48″ posters in less than 24hours turn around time.

Alternatives to PowerPoint

That data projector can show things other than PowerPoint. There is a variety of presentation software out there. Some of them are web-based and others are installable programs. If you are in a classroom that has a SMARTBoard, you may want to checkout SMART Notebook.

The Worst PowerPoints Ever

Winner of the "Worst PowerPoint Slide"

The projector manufacturer InFocus had a contest to find the “Worst PowerPoints” ever. Check out the winners here. My favorite is the winner for worst powerpoint slide. I am happy to say that it was created by an IT department!

Improving the Delivery of Presentations

Use of Kensington Wireless remote

One of the worst things about using PowerPoint is being tethered to the computer in the room when it is time to advance your slide. You can overcome this through the use of a wireless presentation remote.

We like the models from Kensington. They are inexpensive and ultra-reliable. They also stow easily in your satchel, pocket, or purse. We sell these (at cost) through the IT Help Desk or you can purchase them online or at stores. One of the great features is that they are omnidirectional. This means that you can put the remote in your pocket and click to advance your slides without having to take it out or point it at the computer. Don’t forget to grab your receiver when you leave the room!

Backchannel Communication

We and others have written about backchannel communication before. There are tools that can be used to pull these conversations into the foreground. My new favorite tool for live tweeting during an event is Twitterfall. You can give your audience a #hashtag and set up twitterfall to monitor any posts that use that tag. You might also use the freeform text poll in a service like PollEverywhere.com. Read more about that in the next section.

For more information on using Twitter in the face-to-face and online classrooms, take a look at Dunlap and Lowenthal’s article in the Journal of Information Systems Education titled: Tweeting the Night Away: Using Twitter to Enhance Social Presence. This is a link to the journal through EBSCO, if you are off campus, you will need your library barcode off your id to access it. Many thanks to my classmate Adonis Baptista for sharing this with me.

Poll the Audience

Using technology to poll the audience is another popular trend in the classroom. You can use hardware solutions like TurningPoint. There is a 25 user TurningPoint kit available for checkout from the IT Help Desk. You might also use a web service like PollEverywhere.com. You can sign up for a free account for educators to use the service or pay a yearly subscription to gain access to additional features.

Cognitive Loading

It is important to think about the concept of Cognitive Loading when preparing to give a presentation. You should also consider your delivery method when constructing your content. A presentation given as a recording, say on eCollege, should look very different than a presentation given in a live setting. Cognitive loading involves using the two available input channels to the mind, audio and visual, to their maximum capacities.

Live Presentations should have a certain amount of repetition and redundancy built in to assure that your audience receives your message whereas…

Recorded Presentations should have ALL extraneous information and repetition removed. Remember that a recording can be rewound and played again. You might even encourage your audience to rewind (read: give them permission) when they are not sure they understood info given the first time.

For more information on preparing recorded presentations you can check out resources like Mayer’s Multimedia Learning or one of his newer titles that is available from the Malone Stacks. Here are the seven highlights covered in the text:

  1. Multimedia Principle: Students learn better from words and pictures than from words or pictures alone. Make use of both channels, visual and verbal.
  2. Spatial Contiguity Principle: Students learn better when corresponding words and pictures are presented near rather than far from each other on the page or screen.
  3. Temporal Continuity Principle: Students learn better when corresponding words and pictures are presented simultaneously rather than successively.
  4. Coherence Principle: Students learn better when extraneous words, pictures, and sounds are excluded rather than included.
  5. Modality Principle: Students learn better from animation and narration than from animation and on-screen text.
  6. Redundancy Principle: Students learn better from animation and narration than from animation, narration, and on-screen text. Eliminate redundant material.
  7. Individual Differences Principle: Design effects are stronger for low-knowledge learners than for high-knowledge learners and for high-spatial learners than for low-spatial learners.

Forums Available in Malone Xpress

Dear Students, Faculty, & Staff:

There are several forums which are available within the XPress web page. This message contains a brief run down of what they are and who can access them.

What are Xpress forums?
Forums in the XPress system are threaded discussion groups. When you view a forum in XPress, it will show the recent activity in the forum, usually the five or six most recent posts. Clicking the forum label in the blue bar will take you into forum where you can view “Topic” categories and subscribe to the forums. Sign into Malone Xpress to look at the forums.

I am not in XPress everyday? How can I check for new content in the forums?
You can subscribe to the different forums in Xpress via email. Use the “Subscribe” button to subscribe to the topic areas in which you are interested or subscribe to the whole forum. You can subscribe to forums via email.

We encourage you all to go and check out the forums and utilize them for your own purposes. If you have questions about using forums or are interested in having a topic category created in any of the fourms to which you have access, please contact the Help Desk. We can be reached via email at helpdesk AT malone DOT edu , via the web at http://www.malone.edu/helpdesk or by phone at 330.471.8428.

Below is a description of each forum and its target audience.

Home Tab Forum
Where is it? On the home tab, which is the first page you see when you sign into the XPress page, is the Home Forum.
Who can see it? Who can post? Students, Faculty, and Staff can view and are encouraged to post items to these forums.
What is it for? This forum currently has two “Topic” categories. The first is the Lenten Readings which Campus Ministries has started. The second is an “Open Discussion” topic which can be used for general conversation.
Why you should check it out? We’ve just posted the video recording of the MidEast forum from March 1st to the “Open Discussions” topic. Also the Lenten readings are a great way for the Malone community to come together.

Faculty Forum
Where is it? On the “faculty” tab the second portlet in the center column is the “forums” portlet. (A portlet is a box or function within Xpress).
Who can see it? Who can post? This forum is available ONLY to faculty.
What is it for? This forum currently has two “Topic” categories. The first is the “Academic Governance and Curriculum Review Proposal” topic. The second is an “Open Discussion” topic which can be used for general conversation.
Why you should check it out? Discussions have taken place, in faculty development sessions and in other circles, about ways in which we can share “best practices” or materials which are of common interest to faculty.

Staff Forum
Where is it? On the “staff” tab the second portlet in the center column is the “forums” portlet. (A portlet is a box or function within Xpress).
Who can see it? Who can post? This forum is available only to Staff.
What is it for? This forum currently has only one “Topic” category which is “Open Discussion”.
Why you should check it out? This is a place for staff to share content or continue discussion with one another.

Fake iTunes Receipts Hit Malone.edu E-mail Addresses Today

Be on the lookout fake iTunes e-mails that look real.  Many Malone University e-mail users are getting hit with receipts for purchases that appear to be made on their iTunes accounts.  We immediately knew this was a scam when one of our faculty members called us to report the e-mail and the person stated, “I don’t even have an iTunes account.”

This is a very well-executed Phishing email. See our previous information we’ve posted about phishing here. One of the few clues on this message was when you float your mouse over the links in the emails, none of the addresses are apple.com. Be careful – don’t click on them!

Here’s a sample of what people are receiving minus the Apple logo and other iTunes branding.

———————————————————————————–
Subject: Your receipt #748330064242
Billed To:
@malone.edu
Order Number: 1034619
Receipt Date: 01/10/10
Order Total: $803.99
Billed To: Store Credit
Item Number Description Unit Price
1 Whatever You Like [Digital 45]
Write a Review  Report a Problem
$961.99
Subtotal: $143.99
Tax: $0.00
Order Total: $238.99
Please retain for your records.
Please See Below For Terms And Conditions Pertaining To This Order.
Apple Inc.
You can find the iTunes Store Terms of Sale and Sales Policies by launching your iTunes application and clicking on Terms of Sale or Sales Policies
Answers to frequently asked questions regarding the iTunes Store can be found

Item Number Description Unit Price

1 Whatever You Like [Digital 45]  Write a Review  Report a Problem $961.99

Subtotal: $143.99Tax: $0.00

Order Total: $238.99

Please retain for your records.Please See Below For Terms And Conditions Pertaining To This Order.
Apple Inc.You can find the iTunes Store Terms of Sale and Sales Policies by launching your iTunes application and clicking on Terms of Sale or Sales Policies
Answers to frequently asked questions regarding the iTunes Store can be found

——————————————————————————————-

These fakes look surprisingly real.  Remember not to click on any of the hyperlinks in these e-mails as they may harm your computer. If you are ever in doubt about an e-mail of this nature, just go to your iTunes account through the iTunes Store and look at the recent transactions on your account.  There you will find if you were really charged the amounts in question. It is safe practice to check with the true source, iTunes in this case, before becoming alarmed.

Remember you can follow the Malone IT Help Desk– maloneit on Twitter for campus technology updates.

If you have further questions the Help Desk can be reached via email at helpdesk@malone.edu , via the web at http://www.malone.edu/helpdesk or by phone at 330.471.8428.

Tech Tip of the Week 2/22/2010

Malone Faculty and Staff:

This week’s Frequently Asked Question (FAQ) of the week can be found here: What are the guidelines for sending mass emails out to Malone “faculty,” “staff” and “community” lists?

Three different distribution lists have been formed in order to send mass emails to Faculty and/or Staff and the Malone community as a whole.  Specific guidelines have been put in place to ensure the correct use of the distribution lists.  Read more…..

All Help Desk FAQs can be viewed here http://helpdesk.malone.edu/helpdesk/WebObjects/Helpdesk.woa/wa/FaqActions/viewAll.

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