January

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Ringing in the New Year


Doorbells used to be those little buttons outside your house that would let you know someone is at your door. Then the era of IOT ("Internet of Things) happened. In fact, this year instead of a Christmas sweater, you may have received a doorbell with a camera in it.
 
 The convenience of seeing who is at the door from your phone comes with 
a reminder that if you can see out...someone might be able to see in. Like any IOT device that is connected to your home network, your camera could provide a point of entry for bad actors.
 
 Devices like Amazon "Ring" and Google "Nest" can be convenient, but don't forget to change the password and security settings when you install them. All the cameras on the CLU campus are setup with this security. We recommend you follow these best practices at home.

  

CCPA - California Consumer Protection Act


On January 1st, California rolled out a new consumer protection law called the CCPA or California Consumer Protection Act. You may remember back in 2018 the EU established a law called the GDPR or General Data Protection Regulation.
 
 Does the CCPA apply to Non-Profits? No. The CCPA applies to “businesses.” The Act defines that term to include any legal entity (e.g., corporations, associations, partnerships, etc.) that is “organized or operated for the profit or financial benefit of its shareholders or other owners.” This accords with the fact that non-profits are exempt from many of the data privacy and security regulations within the United States – in particular they are largely exempt from enforcement by the Federal Trade Commission, and, therefore, are exempt from compliance with the rules, regulations, and guidance of the Federal Trade Commission to the extent that such rules, regulations, or guidance are not incorporated in state laws that do apply to the non-profit.

 
 
Some of the consumer remedies available are:
 
 You can tell companies not to track you further than 3/4 of a mile from your home. This means no more targeted ads wherever you travel.
 
 Allows consumers to sue businesses if their email and password are stolen as a result of the company's negligence.
 
 Provides severe penalties for any qualifying organization breaking the law governing the sale of children's private data.
 
 For more information about the CCPA go to:
 https://oag.ca.gov/privacy/ccpa
 
 To lodge a complaint go to:
 https://oag.ca.gov/contact/consumer-complaint-against-business-or-company

  

Google Chrome Phishing Protection


Last year Google announced a tool that compares your credentials to a database of 4 billion credentials to determine if your data has been hacked. The Google database is constantly updated and will notify you if your username and password show up anywhere on the list of breaches. This particularly applies to people who reuse their credentials across sites. Of course we know better, but a recent Google poll of 3,000 users showed that 65% of respondents reuse their password across multiple accounts. ITS recommends that you change your personal passwords on the same 90 day schedule that we do on campus. To install the "Password Checkup Extension" Go to the Chrome web store at "chrome.google.com/webstore" and search for "Password Checkup Extension".

How Much Time are we spending on mobile?


I'm not a big mobile user. Sure, I use it to check email and to see if I need an umbrella, but most of the heavy lifting I do on a PC. However, I wonder about the long term trends in mobile use and the side effects (besides walking into solid objects). Here are some statistics you might find surprising.

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There is scuttlebutt out there that attributes any number of ills to constant mobile use, but it is just that. There really haven't been any serious studies to determine the adverse effects if any. One thing for certain is that we can see an obvious trend in mobile use for better or worse.
 
 According to the same Zenith report the average user checks their phone an average of 30 times a day at work. I guess we all have to decide if mobile is increasing our efficiency or decreasing it.

This Month's Links


Jokes from the bulletin board


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