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Dear Colleagues,


As co-chair of the EDUCAUSE & Internet2 Higher Education Information Security Council (HEISC), and on behalf of my partners in CIO “angst reduction”—HEISC co-chairs Dave Swartz (outgoing) and Michele Norin (incoming)—I am pleased to remind all of you that October marks the annual observance of National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM).


The security and privacy of data, mobile devices, information systems, and campus networks has been an important focus of HEISC for almost a decade now. While much progress has been made, much more work remains to be done as colleges and universities seek to reduce risks and improve cyber security measures, including the raising of awareness of students, faculty, staff, and administrators. To that end, HEISC partners annually in October with the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA), the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and other public/private partners to promote cyber security awareness. 


Below are a few suggestions from HEISC for how you can show your support while creating a culture of cyber safety and security at your institution:

·         Hold cybersecurity awareness events on your campus during October and throughout the year.  For more information, consult HEISC’s National Cyber Security Awareness Month Resource Kit:

·         Participate in the October 4 EDUCAUSE Live! webcast (1-2 pm EDT), “Cybersecurity as a Shared Responsibility: Stop, Think, and Connect”:

·         Conduct a cybersecurity awareness or training session for the staff in your IT organization

·         Share the 2011 student poster and video contest winners: and

·         Get involved in the Stop.Think.Connect. campaign, which offers a free online toolkit containing downloadable materials and links to additional resources:

·         Become a Champion of National Cyber Security Awareness Month, demonstrating that your institution is among the broad number of organizations committed to cyber security:

·         Use National Cyber Security Awareness Month web banners on your website and link directly to

·         Join HEISC at EDUCAUSE 2011 for a number of events in support of NCSAM:


Leadership matters and I hope you will join us doing in our part as CIOs to increase awareness and improve cyber security on each of our campuses and across the higher education community. In the interest of protecting our constituents and institutional reputations as well as the economic and national security of the nation, this month serves to remind us that cyber security awareness is Our Shared Responsibility.



Larry Conrad

Co-Chair, EDUCAUSE & Internet2 Higher Education Information Security Council 

Vice Chancellor for IT and CIO

UNC Chapel Hill




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Message from

One way that we, in part, create this culture, at least at the IT level, is to send our folks, especially developers, and NetOps folks, to Defcon, Blackhat, etc., every year.


It is always a hit with our staff, and has resulted, not doubt, in many security improvements.


Highly recommended.


“You must think like the enemy, to defeat him.”


This of course, does not take the place of education, and constant training, but good systems design, testing, and vigilance are at least equally important.




Scott Helf, DO, MSIT

Chief Technology Officer-COMP

Director, Academic Informatics

Assistant Professor


Department of Academic Informatics

Office of Academic Affairs

College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific

Western University of Health Sciences

309 East 2nd Street

Pomona, CA  91766