Author: arm14012

Wireless Risk, Patch Your Personal Devices

The most commonly used security standard for Wi-Fi networks has been compromised.  A recent Key Reinstallation Attack (KRACK) breaks the handshake that encrypts the connection, and cyber criminals could target nearby Wi-Fi networks. There have been no reports yet of this vulnerability being actively exploited. However, UITS recommends that you take action to protect your devices and data.

The intended targets of this attack are end-user devices.  UITS-supported clients will be patched by UITS, and we strongly encourage that you install security updates on personal devices that connect to a Wi-Fi network as soon as they are available.  Microsoft has patched their operating systems, and Apple will be releasing fixes shortly.  Those with Android smartphones should check with their phone manufacturer or mobile carrier for updates.  Other devices, such as individual wireless routers, should be updated with vendor provided patches.

Please note: You are safe if your connection has other protection, such as HTTPS or VPN.

For more information or assistance, contact the UITS Help Center at

9-6-17 Phishing Scam Alert

The following phishing scam from a email address is circulating:

We will be Shutting Down your Account due to suspicious Activity and Login from a Different IP with your Account which have made us take this decision to safeguard your Account. To avoid Shutting Down of this Account you will be Required to CLICK THIS LINK now and Submit Details as you have just 24Hrs to confirm your Account.

System Administrator.

If you receive this message:

  1. Do not click on any links, and do not provide your information. UITS and other University organizations will not send unsolicited requests for UConn credentials or other personal information.
  2. Forward the message to
  3. Delete it from you inbox.

If you clicked on the links:

  1. Change your NetID password immediately.
  2. Set up or change your “secret questions and answers” for your NetID account.

For more a more in-depth discussion of how you can spot phishing scams and protect yourself, please see “Phishing attacks and how to avoid being scammed”.

Contact the UITS Help Center at 860-486-4357 is you need assistance.

6-28-17 Petya Ransomware Threat

A new ransomware threat, Petya, is being reported. Ransomware is a type of malware that encrypts the files on your computer and holds the information hostage in an attempt to extort payment for its release.

Similar to the WannaCry threat, Petya exploits the Microsoft Vulnerability MS17-10: Security Update for Microsoft Windows SMB Server. In addition, once it initially infects a computer, it then installs a tool to acquire usernames and passwords on the infected machine and uses the credentials in an attempt to connect to and infect other computers. For more information about Petya, read the post by Symantec “Petya ransomware outbreak: Here’s what you need to know.

UITS recommends that you run Windows updates on all Windows computers to ensure your computer is patched.  For information on how to check the status of your updates and download, if needed, the latest security patches plus additional tips on how to protect your computer and data from ransonware, view the UITS Ransomware Guide.

5-15-17 Protect your computer from ransomware

The recent cyberattack involving ransomware has been infecting computers and critical systems worldwide since Friday. The main ransomware programs, WannaCrypt and WannaCry, and their variants are infecting computers by exploiting a vulnerability in the Microsoft Windows operating system.  The malicious software then encrypts the contents of a computer and holds the information hostage until a payment is received.  University Information Technology Services (UITS) has been scanning our wired and wireless networks to identify potential weaknesses and has been actively engaged with our IT community to patch vulnerabilities.

You should ensure that your work and personal computers that run Microsoft Windows are up-to-date on all security patches. Visit Protect Your Computer from Ransomware for information about how to update your Windows operating system to address this specific vulnerability.

8-26-16 Firewall changes

UITS will implement firewall changes on September 13th that will impact the university wireless network.

 The industry best practice of network segmentation is an implementation choice that collects like activities onto independent networks with distinct security policies and operating practices.  To improve the network security posture at the institution, UITS has been developing a Server Inventory and Data Protection Initiative whereby we propose to formally separate network clients from network servers.  Restricting generic clients (e.g., phones, tablets, and laptops) to networks designed for their normal use will make it practical to improve security by implementing more extensive access and operating controls.  Unlike our wired networks, the university wireless networks are already client-only by design and practice, and we can enhance security there without disrupting supported activities.  We have shared this plan with our IT Technical Partners group and have also engaged other IT staff to inventory the assets connected to our wireless networks.  However, if you know of any use cases in your area that are inconsistent with this adjustment to infrastructure posture, we ask that you contact Ian Rogers in the UITS Security Office ( so that we can identify and pursue suitable alternatives.

2-17-16 Phishing Attack

Members of the UConn community were targeted by a phishing attack that appeared to come from the UITS Support Center. It asked recipients to click on a link to re-validate their email account. This is a scam and an effort to steal your personal information.  These messages should be disregarded and deleted.

A phishing scam is designed to steal your personal information, such as your bank account numbers, passwords, and other confidential information. They can use this information to steal your money and your identity. Here are some tips on how to protect yourself:

  • Be extremely wary of following links or answering questions from contacts that you did not initiate.
  • Be suspicious of urgent requests that can only be prevented by entering your personal information. These include messages asking you to verify your account information.
  • Do not click on links in a suspicious email. To check the address, hover your mouse over the link without clicking to see if the address matches the link in the message.
  • Do not open attachments from senders that you do not recognize or that just do not seem right.

Please note that UITS and other university organizations will not send an unsolicited request for UConn credentials or other personal information. If you have questions about the validity of a request, contact the UITS Help Center at 860-486-4357 or