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Securing Your Data and Workspace

Follow these practices to secure your workstation and the data on your computer.

Physically secure your equipment and workstation.

  • Close and lock doors of unoccupied spaces, even if gone momentarily.
  • Install barriers, including door and window locks, tamper-resistant hinges, alarm systems, and other anti-theft devices.
  • Install fasteners to protect equipment against earthquake damage.
  • Identify UCSD equipment with inventory stickers or other markings.
  • Maintain strict key control by using codes and ID cards to access spaces.
  • Discard empty boxes immediately after installing new equipment. Don't leave them outside an office or room.

Back up important data on your computer.

  • Follow safe password practices and never share your password.
  • Manage data in a way that reflects its sensitivity. Avoid storing sensitive data on your computer whenever practical. Be aware of data that is sensitive and legally protected, whether displayed on a screen, downloaded, or printed.
  • Back up data on your machine regularly and store it in a secure location separate from your computer. For example, save data to a shared drive and periodically check that it is readable.
  • Do not overwrite backup media unless you are sure that you have a more recent, readable backup.
  • Place your computer screen where others can't easily see its display.
  • Use a "hot corner" or minimize windows displaying sensitive data.

Maintain security with these additional practices.

  • Be sure that someone can access your computer and files if you can't for any reason. (Ask your computer systems support person to identify an appropriate mechanism.)
  • Update software regularly, including anti-virus and security patches.
  • Don't waste bandwidth by unnecessarily running file-sharing programs, Internet radio, streaming video, and other processes that use large amounts of memory.
  • Educate your co-workers if they fail to follow good security practices, and notify your supervisor of any potential problems.
  • Register your computer and use your assigned IP address.
  • Don’t steal or illegally copy software.

If you suspect a computer security breach

Follow these steps if you suspect a security incident on a computer that may have personally identifiable information or student data:

  1. Disconnect the computer from the network.
  2. Leave the computer power on.
  3. Do not use the computer in any way, even to see if it has sensitive information.
  4. Call the ITS Service Desk, (858) 246-4357 and ask to speak to the Computer Incident Response Team (CIRT) representative. The CIRT representative will return your call.
For more information, contact IT Services Security at