IT director gives tech advice for cybersecurity month


Tristan Comba

Information security director John Williams encourages students and faculty to be cognizant when using technology.

Tristan Comba, Contributor

One of the most common mistakes students make when using email is clicking on links from unfamiliar senders, AACC’s director of information security said Tuesday. 

“So they’ll read an email that they shouldn’t,” John Williams said. “They’ll forward it to someone else. They’ll click on a link.”

Williams added, “The biggest piece of advice that I can give is to be smart and realize what you’re doing,”

October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month. Williams will have information tables at AACC’s three campuses.

In addition, a lecture about cybersecurity threats in the digital world, will be at 3 p.m. on Oct. 19 in the Health and Life Sciences building. A second presentation about cybersecurity resources will be in the same building at 6 p.m. on Oct. 26.

“We’re trying to get everybody aware a little more,” Williams said.

Williams advised students to create a different password for every online account, like at banks, school and social media.

“The other [mistake] is sharing passwords or using passwords multiple places or making an insecure password or a weak password,” Williams said. 

“One of the biggest issues is users knowing what to do and doing it safely and securely.” 

Williams recommended students password protect all devices including phones, tablets and laptops. He also said each of those devices should have anti-malware protection.

First-year nursing student Abigail Hernandez said she had to create a new Instagram account after hers got hacked. 

She advised other students to “make very long and complicated passwords that only you personally would know” and “be aware of what you’re clicking ‘yes’ to.”