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Humboldt State University
Letter from Humboldt

February 2015

Putting the Arcata Community Forest on the map

Putting the Arcata Community Forest on the map.

In this issue

Staying Safe Online Parent Receptions Overheard on the Network Latest News from Campus Show You Care with a Gift Package Diploma Display Forever Humboldt Featured Photo Upcoming Events

Staying Safe Online

Whether it’s to study or connect with their family and peers, college students are online a lot. But as Internet use has increased, so have cybercrimes. We chatted with Information Security Officer Josh Callahan—who leads cybersecurity efforts at HSU—for some tips on how students can protect their identity and personal information when they’re online.

Know the Facts

Universities have always attracted hackers, but mobile devices and wireless Internet have made them bigger targets in recent years. For instance, did you know the number of cyberattacks in the U.S. increased 48 percent between 2013 and 2014?

At HSU, one of the most common types of attacks is the phishing scam. In this type of scheme, scammers send a legitimate looking email to steal someone’s personal or financial information. “There are two rounds,” Callahan says. “First, they try to get your username and password. The second phase is using your account to send out a batch of emails that usually ask for financial information, like your bank account.”

Don’t Take the Bait

One of the best ways to protect yourself from a cyberattack is to recognize what one looks like, says Callahan. And when it comes to phishing scams, they often look alike.

  • Look for spelling and grammatical errors
    Major misspellings, grammatical errors, and strange language typically indicate a scam. That’s because so many attacks originate in countries outside the United States. Also be wary of emails that are generically addressed—for example, using “HSU customer” instead of your student’s name.
  • If it’s threatening or urgent, don’t open it
    Emails that are threatening—“if you don’t do this your account will be deleted”—are also typically spam. The same goes for emails saying you must act quickly.
  • Don’t download or click on links
    If an email asks you to download something—for instance a security update—don’t do it. Chances are, you’ll be downloading software that will damage or disable your computer.

Report Suspicious Emails

If you come across something suspicious, Callahan recommends using the “Report Spam” tool in Gmail and Outlook. These accounts have an option that allows you to flag suspicious emails for further investigation. He also encourages students to report any suspicious emails to If you believe you’ve already been the target of a cyberattack, contact the Technology Help Desk at (707) 826-4357.

For more tips on how your student can stay safe online, visit

Parent Reception

Thanks to all the parents who attended the parent receptions this fall, and a special thanks to all of you who helped host them. We’re still looking for volunteers to organize parties this spring. Connect with other HSU parents, share your experiences, and more. If you’re interested, contact the Forever Humboldt office at (707) 826-3132 or

Overheard on the Network

“Does HSU send out a 1098-T to parents? If so when are they sent out? Is it available to parents on the website also?”

» Join the conversation
» Parents & Family network
» Parents & Family website

Latest News from Campus

In First Trip Outside Pakistan, Student Learns about HSU and Education

New Desalination Technology Could Answer State Drought Woes

School of Business Makes Big Changes, Gets Stamp of Approval

New Library Collection Features HSU Authors

Show You Care with A Gift Package

Make your student feel special with a gift package. HSU has teamed up with to deliver care packages directly to your student for final exams, holidays and when they simply need some extra motivation. Filled with all the goodies you know they’ll love, there’s a package for every student and every occasion.

» Order at

Diploma Display

Is your student graduating soon? Display their achievement with a customized diploma frame. Diploma Display offers handcrafted frames made from hardwood molding in a beautiful cherry color. Your student’s diploma frame is exclusively designed for HSU and comes with a 100 percent money-back guarantee. Visit Diploma Display for more information.

Forever Humboldt

We know that alumni are hardly alone as passionate supporters of the university, so we’ve created Forever Humboldt, a new incarnation of the Alumni Association. It’s free for all Humboldt alumni, students, parents & families, faculty, and staff. Join today to stay connected, show your pride, and support HSU.

Visit to register for free, receive email updates, get a membership card, and more.

Featured Photo

sA little rain didn’t get in the way of hydrology research
A little rain didn’t get in the way of hydrology research.

» For more HSU photos, visit Flickr

Upcoming Events

March 6-7
Social Justice Summit

March 12
Citations & Plagiarism Workshop

March 16-20
Spring Break

March 27
Finance and Footprints Reception

March 31
Cesar Chavez Holiday

May 16

» More events on the HSU Events Calendar

» Important campus phone numbers
» Send us your ideas and comments on the newsletter.

Humboldt State University
1 Harpst Street Arcata, CA 95521

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