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Information Security

Vassar College is committed to providing a safe, secure computing environment for all students, faculty, and employees. The role of Information Security is to manage the security and integrity of electronic information. We strive to do this by implementing industry best practices and ensuring we are meeting all compliance obligations while supporting Vassar College’s educational and research objectives.

CIS is currently performing a high-level Information Technology Security Risk Assessment under the direction of Carlos Garcia, Vice President of Computing and Information Services, and Emily Harris, Information Security Officer. The outcome of this assessment will guide Vassar College in launching its first comprehensive Information Security Program. Please check back often for updates on this process, which should be completed by the end of the spring semester, 2016.


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Data Security on Instructor Computers

Historically, classroom computers did not require a login. Therefore, whoever used the computer next, would easily have access to the the prior session's data, if it were not closed, exited or deleted. Web browser sessions were regularly left open and logged in. Also, files left on the desktop and other locations, were readily available until deleted automatically by an overnight process. The information security risk was becoming increasingly concerning.

NEW FOR THE FALL SEMESTER 2016: Computer login is now required for all instructor computers in classrooms. As members of the Vassar community, instructors will need to log in to the classroom computers with a Vassar User Name and Password. A guest login is also available, in each classroom, for guest lecturers. All instructors should log off the computer when class is finished. Once logged out, the display is locked and the account is secure, preventing the next person from accessing anything left open or left behind. The next user can only log in to their own account.

As an additional precaution, the display will lock after 2 hours of inactivity. Also, private (incognito) browsing has been implemented as the default browsing method on all public and classroom computers.

Phishing: don’t get caught!

Did you receive a suspicious email, and think it might be phishing, spam, or fraudulent? Head over to The CIS "Catch of the Day" site to see if it has already reported. If not, forward it to catchoftheday@vassar.edu


View the following guides in Service Desk (Vassar username and password required)

Best Practices

View the following guides in Service Desk (Vassar username and password required)

Safe Computing tips and tricks

Information Security Training and Awareness

Vassar College can provide structured training via the SANS Institute Securing the Human online program. If you would like to participate, make a request via the CIS Service Catalog.