Session offers students tips on how to protect online information


The Office of Institutional Research sponsored a data privacy information session in DiSepio on March 15 in hopes of making students more aware of the dangers in today’s cyber-world.

“Awareness is the first step,” said John Valkovci, a Visiting Assistant Professor in Computer Science.

“Any time we have an issue in society, making people aware is the first step.”

Kate White-Deater, Director of SFU’s Office of Institutional Research, said there is an on-going national effort to make people more aware of the dangers of cyber-hacks.

Many professionals were in attendance at last week’s event, including Tara Trickett from the National Cyber Forensics Training Alliance.

According to Trickett, fishing emails – when someone sends messages impersonating someone else – are one of the primary ways that hackers steal people’s information.

Valkovci noted that when people order things online with their credit card, it raises their risk of being hacked dramatically.

“People are balancing convenience against privacy,” said Valkovci.

Justin Locke, a Research Analyst with SFU’s Office of Institutional Research, said that statistics suggest that Americans will encounter at least one cyber-security problem during your lifetime.

“Every morning, you wake up and touch how many electronic devices?” said Trickett.

“Every single one of those is a potential access point for a hacker.”