Staff and students are the are the first line of defence against cybercrimes.

Cyber attacks are a growing threat to our intellectual property, important data, and the privacy of our students and staff.

Whilst we have deployed controls in place to protect UNSW against cybercriminals, it’s important to understand that cyber ‘savvy’ UNSW staff and students are the first and last line of defence against social engineering and cybersecurity attacks.

Security Services are always your first contact point for any incident or emergency on campus. If you have identified or fallen victim to a potential cyber attack, please contact the IT Service Centre immediately on (02) 9385 1333.

Protecting Yourself

During times of crisis, cybercriminals frequently take advantage of disruption to perpetrate crime. We regularly see attacks specifically targeting crises, such as natural disasters, outbreaks of illness, and conflicts, with emails having content playing on people’s fears and concerns.

It’s very important to not let your guard down, and continue to question contacts (emails, phone calls, SMS) that are unusual and asking you to do things that you might not otherwise do. If you are in doubt, please question such contacts, and not by email back. If you’re not sure, always validate the authenticity of the message or the contact.

Check out more information on IT Security Standards and Policies.

Common Cybersecurity Attacks

Phishing includes emails, calls or texts from cyber criminals that pretend to be from a trusted source. These cyber criminals are after sensitive information such as financial details, confidential information, and passwords.

Spam emails are generally from someone or an organisation trying to market a product to you. Spammers are not generally trying to get sensitive information from you, although they may try to elicit personal information to add to their database for future spam attempts.

Be wary of:

  • Poor spelling and/or grammar

  • Unknown sender address and unrecognised phone numbers

  • Communication that convey a sense or urgency

  • Suspicious attachments

  • Unusual address when hovering over link(s)

Tip: Identifying phishing emails on your mobile device is more challenging. Be extra careful and investigate further when you have access to a computer.

Social engineering is the psychological manipulation of unsuspecting people into performing actions or revealing information that undermines their own security of their associated group.

Social engineering techniques attackers commonly use:

  • Take advantage of people’s curiosity or greed

  • Invent scenario’s to obtain information

  • Give something to get something

  • Follow a person through restricted entrance

  • Invent a scenario through email, text or phone call

Tip: Be mindful of the personal information you share on-line.

Malicious apps are mobile apps that replicate the look or functionality of popular apps to trick users into downloading them, infecting devices and stealing data.

To help identify malicious apps:

  • Check the app icon for slight differences in shape and colour

  • Check the reviews

  • Watch out for low numbers of downloads on apps

  • Be wary of extra symbols and extra words on the stated app name/developer

  • Check the app description name for spelling and grammar errors

Cybersecurity Tips When Working From Home

During COVID-19, with most of our staff and students working from home, UNSW has prepared a guide to make sure you are aware of cyber security threats and remain safe during this time. 

There are three highlight focus areas that we have provided as part of the Cyber Awareness hub:

  • How to secure your work from home workstation and protect your work devices

  • Online cyber security and protecting UNSW data and information when working remotely

  • How to protect yourself from phishing email scams

We have also designed infographics focused on the Work From Home campaign initiatives.

Cyber Security Infographics

Secure Your Workstation

Phishing Campaigns

Data Safety

Tips for Working From Home

Top 3 Cyber Tips