Security Awareness

The Office of Information Security (OIS) in the Office of Technology Services (OTS) provides Cybersecurity Awareness resources for Towson University.

National Cybersecurity Awareness Month

Every October, TU's Office of Information Security in the Office of Technology Services joins the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the National Cybersecurity Alliance to celebrate and promote National Cybersecurity Awareness Month (NCSAM). This month long awareness program is a collaborative effort between government and industry to ensure that every American has the security resources they need to be safe online. 

2018 Cybersecurity Event

Mark your calendar and RSVP for this third annual event!

  • Date: Tuesday, October 2
  • Time: 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • Place: West Village Commons, Ballrooms A & B (4th floor). Students, faculty and staff are encouraged to take the shuttle, as parking is limited.

This year's theme is  stop.think.connect.  Join OIS for industry expert presentations, a vendor zone, refreshments and giveaways - including Amazon gift cards and a pair of Ravens tickets!


9:30-10 a.m.
Refreshments, check-in and vendor zone

10-11:30 a.m.
Opening remarks by Dr. David Vanko, Interim Provost & Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs

Keynote presentation by Debora Plunkett, former Director on the National Security Council at The White House and former Director of Information Assurance, National Security Agency. 

Topic: Living in a cyberworld: how cybersecurity impacts everyone’s day-to-day activities

11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
Presentation by Ashlee Benge, Research Engineer at Cisco Talos.

Topic: The threat landscape

12:30-1 p.m.
Lunch break (light lunch will be provided) and vendor zone

1-2 p.m.
Panel Discussion featuring Dr. Joseph Clark, Assistant Professor - Department of Political Science, and Badolato Speaker Series Program Director; Larry Letow, President and COO of LG-Tek and co-founder of the National Cyber Security Hall of Fame; Tim Byrnes, OIS Security Architect. 

2-3 p.m.
Vendor zone, networking, event wrap up


  • The Badolato Speaker Series: The Edward V. Badolato Distinguished Speaker Series brings to campus distinguished leaders in the field of Homeland Security to share their perspective on what needs to be done to combat terrorism and make our nation safer. Learn more at
  • Cisco
  • DSI Disys Solutions, Inc.: Complete IT Solutions & Services. Learn more at 


ATS, Auxiliary Services, The Badolato Speaker Series, The Career Center, Cisco Talos, Computer Information Sciences Department, Dell, Office of Civic Engagement/NY Times Talk Series, Office of Information Security, OTS Client Services, OTS Student Computing Services, Pepsi, Phish Labs

Please check back for updates on speakers, special guests and schedule information.


Highlights from events include: 

  • Speaker Matt Olney, Manager at Cisco Talos, gave a special presentation on the how individuals and small organizations can have a global impact on security.
  • Speaker Daniel Gray, FBI Supervisory Special Agent: The Cyber Security Insider Threat-recognizing and combating cybercrime

  • Presenter James Crumpler '16, NSA employee performed computer security demonstrations

  • TU Professor Michael O’Leary, Ph.D. & the TU Computer Science students performed a live hack

 Report a suspicious or phishing email 

From a desktop or laptop:

  • Click the “Report Phish” button, which appears above the body of the email.
  • You will get prompted with: “Are you sure you want to report this email as a phishing email?”
  • Confirm by clicking the red “Report Phish” button, which sends the potential scam to the OIS security team for review, and deletes the email from your inbox.

From a mobile device:

  • Do not reply to the email.
  • Forward it to 
  • Delete the email from your inbox.

Information Security Awareness Training at Towson

The campus is our first line of defense against insider and outsider threats. Collectively forming our shield protects the University from malicious or unlawful use of our resources by external sources. Through the Office of Information Security, faculty, staff and student workers have access to online training in the SANS Securing the Human security awareness platform to help accomplish this.

Available Training

  • Information Security General Awareness Training: this curriculum is designed to educate how to protect yourself and the university against cyberattacks during everyday activities. Training consists of viewing short security awareness videos, completing the accompanying activities, and viewing OTS policies and web pages. 
  • Modules include: You are the Shield, Passwords, Encryption, Data Security, Personally Identifiable Information, Social Engineering, Email & Phishing, and Hacked. 

How to request training



Security lingo can be confusing. SANS provides a list of common security terms with basic definitions.

Get the latest Cybersecurity info directly from SANS: read the OUCH! Monthly Newsletter and watch a new Awareness Video every month.

Password Security

Cyber criminals have developed sophisticated programs to guess your passwords. To protect yourself, it is important to create a strong password that cannot be easily hacked. Refer to TU's password guidelines when creating a Towson University NetID or other online password.


Learn how to recognize phishing, which is a cybercrime targeting your email. Forward suspicious emails received in your Towson University email inbox to

Security Checks

Do your own security check up using's free security check-ups and tools. Are you putting Towson University at risk? Take the quiz.