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Cybersecurity Awareness month brings attention to scams

More than a quarter (26%) of Canadians responded that they have been a victim of an email phishing scam, according to a survey prepared for the federal government. 

Phishing scams can take several forms from emailing, texting, calling, or leaving a voicemail but all are trying to fool a victim to get their personal or corporate information. Hackers will use it to gain access to online accounts and more for fraudulent purposes. 

When you receive an unexpected call or email asking for personal or company information, you should think critically about the request,” says Kevin Macnaughton, team leader security in IT Services. “While the person may appear to be helpful or in need, often they’re trying to manipulate you and falling for it can cause significant monetary loss to you and the University.” 

IT Services’ top five tips for spotting, and ultimately avoiding phishing are: 

  1. Consider the request in detail.  
  • Is it an unusual or unexpected ask from the sender?  
  • Is there an odd sense of urgency? 
  • Does it ask you to open an attachment you were not expecting?  
  • Does the message ask you to log in or supply personal information to a website? 
  1. Examine the sender’s name and email address carefully. Does is come from a public email like “” or another free email service when it should be coming from a business or corporation. 
  1. Review the message.  Does it have spelling errors, bad grammar, odd formatting, or missing signature?  
  1. Check any links in the message.  
  • When you hover over them, are the web addresses suspicious?  
  • Do any of the characters appear to be lookalikes instead of the correct letters? 
  1. For call scams, beware of a request to access your computer. Do they want to connect with you via remote desktop or ask that you share your log-in information to an online account? 

If you answer YES to any of the questions above, do not react to the message. Instead, if you think the message may be legitimate, contact the sender through a different communication channel to verify it. Otherwise, report the message or call to or contact the IT Service Desk at 519-253-3000 ext. 4440.  

Find examples of phishing messages on the Cybersecurity Awareness website. 

To showcase the global cybersecurity efforts, we are sharing the Irish campaign, "Stop.Think.Connect.” 

Led by IT Services, Cybersecurity Awareness Month efforts highlight cybersecurity issues relevant to the UWindsor community. More information can be found at 


man employing security systems on computer

The recent return to campus has many employees now working from two locations and creates complexities and potential cybersecurity risks.

“Each person's situation may pose a unique challenge. Those working on a dedicated campus computer would have different considerations than someone who is commuting back and forth with a laptop,” says Kevin Macnaughton, team leader security in Information Technology Services.

“We want people to remain mindful of the cybersecurity risk that each scenario poses and be a human firewall to stop a threat before it has devasting effects.”

Remember these tips to keep cybersecure:

  • Use remote desktop to maintain the continuity of your digital work environment by accessing an on-campus computer from home, providing protection for the University’s network.
  • To protect from potential theft when travelling to and from campus with your laptop, be sure not to leave your device unattended or visible.
  • Use the VPN to connect to the Internet when working off-campus. It allows your data to be encrypted over a wired or Wi-Fi network.

For more cybersecurity best practices while working at two locations, see the Working from Home and Campus web page.

To showcase the global cybersecurity efforts, IT Services is sharing the Canadian government’s campaign, with its focus of “This year, life happens online.”

Led by IT Services, Cybersecurity Awareness Month efforts highlight cybersecurity issues relevant to the UWindsor community. More information can be found at

man cowering near insecure computer

The University of Windsor will mark Cybersecurity Awareness Month 2021 with its own digital campaign focused on themes relevant to the campus community whether working or learning in-person or remotely.

Cybersecurity Awareness Month, held each October, is an internationally recognized effort to inform the public of the importance of cybersecurity. The campaign aims to help Canadians better understand online security, and to supply simple steps to protect themselves, their families, their devices, and their workplaces.

“We are using the opportunity to remind and assist our faculty, staff, and students about cybersecurity best practices on campus and at home,” says Kevin Macnaughton, team leader security in Information Technology Services. “We hope to help them better identify the ever-changing phishing tactics, advise on securing their mobile devices or workstations, and highlight the global campaigns taking place.”

Key cybersecurity themes will be shared via DailyNews and UWindsor social media channels starting next week and run through to the end of October. More information is available at

Tech Talk logo

Take control and automate your work flows with Power Automate. This app allows you to optimize your work and reduce repetitive tasks by combining processes with apps you already use.

See Information Technology Services team member Jonathan North walk through scheduling a meeting using a list item from Microsoft Lists to trigger a workflow in a short 124-second Tech Talk video.

Tech Talk is a presentation of IT Services. More Tech Talks are available at

Tech Talk logo

Do you find yourself copying information from Microsoft Forms to Microsoft Lists?

A recently added Tech Talk video shows you the process of transferring information from form fields into a list with the help of Power Automate. Watch Information Technology Services team member Jonathan North walk through the steps in this short 123-second Tech Talk video.

For more information about Microsoft Lists, click on the link in the Comments section below the video. Also, find IT Services’ collection of Tech Talk videos and gain useful tips and tricks on how to work more efficiently.