Viruses and Spyware

"Viruses" are small computer programs designed to spread between computers and interfere with normal operations of your computer.  A virus may disguise itself as something you want or need, like an email from a friend.  It may also be undetectable and spread to other users without your knowledge.

"Spyware" is a different type of program which may display unwanted advertisements, track websites you visit, or disclose personal information to others.  Again these programs may run silently or interfere with normal operations of your computer.

What we're doing to help protect you:

  • Wentworth has chosen Sophos Endpoint Protection to protect our faculty and staff computers as well as machines issued to students through our Laptop Program. Sophos is a world leader with a 25-year history in enterprise IT security and control. Trusted by 100 million users and endorsed by industry analysts, Sophos provides the best defense against today's blended threats.
  • Viruses detected on our network are automatically reported to Network Operations, which helps us respond to threats and outbreaks more quickly.
  • Sophos checks for updated virus definitions every 30 minutes, significantly more frequently than other antivirus products.

How can I protect myself?

  • Know what you are installing. Just because an advertisement on a website says you need to install something, doesn't mean you should.  
  • Trust your instincts. Advertisements often pose as antivirus tools and claim your computer is infected. If you click something and immediately are asked for your credit card, you're probably about to fall for a scam. 
  • Be wary of hidden threats. Want to watch a video but need to download a new plug-in first? Most reputable sites use technology your web browser already has.
  • Update your web browser. Modern browsers have enhanced technology which can warn you of known infected sites, prevent automatic downloads, and protect your personal information.
  • Ask a friend. Have a friend who's tech savvy?  It probably won't hurt to wait a few minutes before you click download and ask someone else's opinion.  Of course you can also contact the Tech Spot.
  • If you aren't expecting it... don't open it! Viruses often spread via email attachments. If you get an attachment and aren't expecting it, it's safer to just delete it. Even if it's from a trusted friend, call to make sure they really sent the message.
  • Run antivirus software. Running antivirus is a simple way to detect things you might not notice. 

Additional information on Sophos Endpoint Protection is available from the developer.