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Information Resources and Technology


Tips to protect your SacLink account and information

Information about keeping your account secure and your information safe.
  1. How do I keep my information safe?
  2. What makes a strong password?
  3. What's the difference between a password and a pass phrase?
  4. What university policies help ensure account security?
  5. Who can I give my password to?
  6. If I am using a lab computer and I log out, will my personal or account information be saved?
  7. What is phishing?

How do I keep my information safe?

Since your SacLink account provides access to so many campus services, it's vital to keep your account secure.

Protect your password 
Never share your account information with anyone else : Do not share your password or post it anywhere.
Use a strong password or passphrase 
Do not use dictionary words or family or department names. Change your passwords often.
Protect confidential information 
By law, most student information is confidential. To be safe, be cautious with any private data and store as little confidential information on your computer or in unlocked areas as possible.
Update system patches, security fixes, and anti-virus software 
Make sure home and office Windows machines have the latest patches and security fixes and update anti-virus software. Set your computers to have updates downloaded automatically.
Use secure and supported applications 
Insecure applications such as certain BitTorrent clients can cause trouble for your computer and leave the university open to network attack.
Don't open suspicious email attachments
Many viruses and worms are spread through email files.
Backup your data 
Protect your important information by making sure your data is backed up regularly, either remotely, or by doing it yourself.
Screen Lock 
Use a password protected screen saver to "lock" your computer when unattended, and turn off your computer at night (unless it is backed up at night and must be left on).
    • Tip: If need to step away from your computer, you can easily lock your screen by pressing:
      • Windows Key + L (Windows PC)
      • Control + Shift + Eject (Mac OS)

What makes a strong password?

Passwords must have the following:

  • Use at least 12 characters for your password.
  • Not contain your SacLink Username or any part of your full name.
  • Not use an old password.
  • Ensure your password contains characters that can be typed on a standard English (US) keyboard.

What's the difference between a password and a pass phrase?

A password is used as a key to access personal information. Many believe that passwords should be based off of words when in fact, this leaves your account open to being compromised. One technique used to create a stronger password is to use a passphrase instead. Passphrases allow for stronger versions of a password. Passphrases are similar to acronyms, often including special characters and numbers.

For example, "Waiting For Graduation" could be translated to "W41TIN4GR4D!" The phrase should be something meaningful to you, and only you, so it can be easily remembered. Such techniques help maintain a higher level of security. For more information and suggestions on creating a strong password, or how to use the passphrase technique, see our article Passphrase vs Password.

What university policies help ensure account security?

The Board of Trustees of the California State University (CSU) is responsible for protecting the confidentiality, integrity and availability of CSU information assets. Unauthorized modification, deletion, or disclosure of information assets can compromise the mission of the CSU, violate individual privacy rights, and possibly constitute a criminal act. Policy details can be found at CSU Information Security Policies and Standards.

Who can I give my password to?

No one, your password should be kept private. No one from Information Resources & Technology, Admissions, or the Registrar's office or any other university office will ever ask for your password. If you think your password has been stolen or used without your consent, report the incident to and immediately change your password.

If I am using a lab computer and I log out, will my personal or account information be saved?

If you log off of a lab computer or loaned laptop your information will not be saved. However, if you simply exit a web browser or close your application, without logging off, then your information might be accessible by the next person. Always make sure you log off, restart, or turn off any lab or loaned computer you use.

What is phishing?

Phishing is when an internet fraudster impersonates an organization and tricks you into giving out your personal information. Don't reply to any email that asks for your personal or financial information. Don't click on links within them either – even if the message seems to be from an organization you trust. It isn't. Sacramento State will never ask you to send sensitive information (personal security question answers, passwords, or personal information) through insecure channels such as email.

Phishing Emails are usually disguised as legitimate messages. Phishing can lead to personal information being stolen, including saved passwords and bank account information.

If you receive a suspicious email from a sender you do not recognize, please do the following:

  1. Save the email as a file.
  2. Forward the email file to

For more information about this process, please see our article, Phishing Information. If you believe that you are a victim of phishing please contact the Service Desk] at 916-278-7337 or by submiting a help ticket.

Accounts & Access - KB0010458 by Long Lim | Published:2014-06-26 | Updated:2018-03-26 13:05:28 | Views::297

Version 1.4.2 (release notes)