Security Corner - Physical Security

Making sure your computer or phone does not fall into the wrong hands is the easiest and most basic form of security that anyone can perform.  This involves everything from making sure your device doesn’t get lost or stolen to making sure that the data on your computer isn’t accessed by unauthorized persons.  In some cases, unauthorized access to your computer or devices can give access to Pomona network resources and data those with malicious intent.  If you think that your computer or device has been physically compromised, change your password immediately and contact the ITS Service Desk at 909-621-8061.

Here are a few quick tips for keeping things physically secure:

Do NOT give your password to anyone or write it down in an easy-to-find location.
With your password, anyone can log in, access information that you have access to, and view your documents.  They do not have to be at your computer.  Even if you think you have nothing to keep private, your password also gives anyone who has it access to the Pomona network.

Lock your workstation
If you walk away from your computer and leave it unlocked, anyone can sit down and access your data and the Pomona network.  Always lock your computer (control-alt-del then Lock on Windows; Macintoshes can put their computer to sleep or create a screen saver that requires a password to unlock).

Make sure that your mobile devices require a passcode
Mobile phones and devices have the option to require passcodes; make sure that this feature is enabled and that your passcode is not easy to guess (like 1111 or 1234).  If you have Apple iOS devices, you should also turn on Find My iPhone for extra security.

Lock your door when you are not there.  Put laptops away in locked drawers.
While break in’s and “drive by” thefts are not common at The Claremont Colleges, they do occur.  If you are going to step away, lock your door.  If you are going to be out for a while, lock your laptop away in a locked drawer or take it with you.

Make sure your devices are encrypted
If your devices are lost or stolen and fall into the wrong hands, encrypted disks will make sure that thieves will not be able to access your data.

NEVER EVER leave laptops or mobile devices in an unattended vehicle
Not even if the vehicle is locked or the laptop is stashed away.  Not even for a little while. Laptops are frequently stolen out of locked vehicles.