University updates to heightened online security

By Colin Bird

If you’re afraid someone might be watching when you log onto that local cafe’s WiFi, we have good news for you!

The updates on the university’s network security program begin tomorrow.

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For years the school has been offering students and faculty a program called Virtual Private Network… also know as VPN. CITES spokesperson Brian Mertz says VPN offers people stability in insecure locations.

“Let’s say you’re in a coffee shop in Tokyo and you’re not sure who else is watching that traffic in the coffee shop, you can use that VPN and it encrypts your traffic and sends it back to the campus and only you and the University will be able to see that traffic,” Mertz said.

The school is updating VPN from its older CISCO-based system to one that will be available on your computer without downloading or logging onto the program. Brian says the new system has a stronger defense against hackers.

“It’s really difficult for someone to pick up your Internet traffic when you’re using the VPN in. I guess I would say for the few click it takes to install and turn on the VPN it could really make a big difference in keeping your identity safe,” Mertz said.

By logging onto the network you are allowing the University to potentially see your trafficking content.

However Mertz says the school would only look if you were downloading viruses or poking your head in restricted areas of the network. Mertz says the network may be the most secure way to ever cruise the Internet.