Office of Cybersecurity Visits ITA Madison

Mon November 28, 2016

The UW-Madison’s Office of Cybersecurity staff visited the Information Technology Academy (ITA) Madison session on Saturday, November 19 in a four-part educational workshop series on cybersecurity.

Chief Information Security Officer Robert Turner introduced the series before handing it over to Stefan Wahe who led nearly 120 ITA Madison students through best practices for passwords and mobile device security.

Wahe impressed on students the importance of knowing what makes a strong password that would protect one’s personal identity, information and reputation. Tips for passwords included using memory tricks to create hard-to-crack passwords, mixed characters, unusual character substitutions, and different passwords for different platforms. For example, the phrase “Jack and Jill Went Down the Hill” could become “J@JwdtH111”, a strong password that is easier to remember. When in doubt, password strength-checkers, such as www.passwordmeter.com, can be used. Wahe also recommended keeping mobile devices safe by locking phones, staying off open networks, and keeping operating systems updated.

Beyond tips on securing their current information, Wahe encouraged the students to think about their future and how a career within the growing cybersecurity profession could fit their skills and passions.

In December 2016 and January 2017, the Office of Cybersecurity will offer three additional sessions on topics such as network security, avoiding social engineering and staying safe abroad. ITA is grateful to work with the Office of Cybersecurity to provide relevant technology instruction and personally helpful information to ITA students.