Use strong and unique passwords
Many devices and accounts now require a password for security purposes. The stronger the passwords you use, the harder it is for hackers to crack them and take control of your devices or accounts.
Your UDelNet password, which protects your email and other University-related accounts, must conform to the following rules:
- Must be between 12 and 30 characters in length.
- Must not consist of a single word or name.
- Must contain at least one character from three of the four following character sets:
- Uppercase letters
- Lowercase letters
- Special characters, including punctuation marks and symbols (excludes the "space" character).
- Must not be an obvious University-related phrase (e.g., "BlueHens2020" would be rejected).
Weak passwords make it easy for hackers to break into computers and accounts. Passwords containing your birth date, name, or common sequences or phrases like "12345678," "Qwerty12," and "P@ssw0rd" are easy for a hacker to crack. And at the University, a password like "BlueHen2020" is easy for a hacker to guess. By using weak passwords, you put your device and accounts at risk.
The easiest way to make a strong password is to take a phrase or short sentence you can remember and transform it into a strong passphrase. For example, you could create a passphrase from a lyric: "Hello from the other side" could become "Hi_From:Side2".
Don't reuse passwords, particularly your UDelNet password. If you reuse your UDelNet password at a commercial site that gets hacked, you could be exposing your information or the University's systems to those very same hackers. Each of your important accounts, including your UDelNet account, should be protected by a strong password unique to that account.
For improved security, the University requires that all UDelNet passwords be changed at least once every 15 months.
NEVER share your UDelNet password with anyone. It is an integral part of your individual identity at the University and online. If you share your account or password with someone, that person could accidentally or intentionally expose your password or misuse your account, which puts you and the University at risk.
For example, if your parents need access to some of your confidential information, do not share your password with them. Instead, invite them to view your information using UD Parent/Guardian Secure Services.
Finally, enable two-factor authentication (2FA) to protect your UDelNet account (and other accounts). 2FA helps keep your account and information safe by requiring a second factor, such as a secret code, in addition to your password when you log in. Even if a hacker steals or cracks your password, he or she can't access your account without that second factor. Many online banking and shopping accounts also have their own 2FA settings that you can enable for further protection.
Tips for password security
- Smarter = safer. A strong password or passphrase should be easy to remember, but hard to guess.
- Don't reuse passwords. If one of your accounts gets hacked, the hackers will try that password on your other accounts, too.
- Don't share passwords. Even a parent or friend could accidentally expose your passwords and compromise your account.
- Enable two-factor authentication (2FA). 2FA is an extra safeguard that protects your account, even if your password is stolen or cracked.
Your responsibilities as a student
As a student at the University, you're responsible for protecting yourself, your information, and your devices as well as the University's IT resources as you use them.
- Use IT resources appropriately
- Take responsibility for your device's activity
- Protect and clean your computer
- Use strong and unique passwords
- Protect yourself from phishing and other fraud
- Understand copyright laws and file sharing
- Protect your online reputation
- Understand the consequences for violating the rules