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Communication and Technology Services

CaTS Quarterly Fall 2014

Those Pesky Passwords

Your password is more than just a key to your computer or BOCES network account. It is a gateway to all of your important information, including potentially sensitive employee or student data.
  If your account or password is used by someone other than you, it allows that person to access your files or sensitive data, change your account information and send emails or perform other functions as if they were you.

Similarly, at home where many of you maintain accounts or pay bills online, if your password falls into the wrong hands, it can be used to access your bank or credit card accounts, engage in financial transactions, or other potentially harmful activities.

The best way to prevent this is to use strong passwords and avoid giving others access to your accounts.
  People often use passwords with simple combinations such as 123456, password, qwerty, or abc123.  In other cases, people simply use their own name, a child’s name, pet’s name or their birth date -- information that can be easily found online, such as on a Facebook or other popular sites.

How to Create Secure Passwords:

Cyber criminals have developed programs that automate the ability to guess your passwords. To protect yourself, passwords must be difficult for others to guess but at the same time easy for you to remember.  Here are some recommendations:

·         Passwords should have at least eight characters and include upper case and lowercase letters, numbers and symbols.

·         Avoid words and proper names, regardless of language. Hackers use programs that try every word in a dictionary.

·         Better yet, use passphrases.  A phrase or combination of different words will work just as effectively – not to mention, make it easier for you to remember.

·         Don't use personal information -- name, children's name, birthdates, etc. that  someone might already know or easily obtain.

·         Change passwords regularly. If you believe your system, or an online account has been compromised, change your password immediately.

·         Use different passwords for each account you have.


Protecting Your Passwords:

·         DO NOT write down your passwords.  If you need to remember your passwords, write down a hint to a password, but never the password itself.  Store the hint in a safe place away from your computer.

·         Never share your password with anyone – attackers may try to trick you via phone calls or email messages into sharing your password.

·         Do not reveal your password on surveys, questionnaires or security forms.

·         Decline the “Remember Password” feature in browsers.

·         Avoid using sites that require passwords when using a public computer or when connecting your device to a public Wi-Fi network..

·         At work, follow your organization’s password policy.

A Closer Look at CaTS Services

Ensemble Video is a simple yet powerful tool that allows you to share videos with small groups or the world. Bridging the gap between a public service like YouTube or Vimeo and often clunky solutions like Windows media server, Ensemble Video provides users the ability to completely customize their video publishing with no technical expertise.

Monroe 2-Orleans BOCES has been offering Ensemble Video to our component districts for several years, but it is also available for all internal departments via the Instructional Media Library. Ensemble gives users the ability to upload video in dozens of formats (.wmv, .avi, .mp4, .m4v etc.) and then publish that video wherever they choose. Ensemble Video works seamlessly with School World, Teacher Pages, Blogs, Wikis, Moodle or just about any place you can input html code.

If you have ever watched
BOCES Boss Undercover you have watched an Ensemble published video, but that’s not all BOCES staff has done with Ensemble. Teachers are using it to record and publish math lessons as well as collect and publish student video projects. Instructional technology staff utilize it for trainings and demos, and the School Library System has an extensive collection of How-To videos in their Ensemble library.

For more information on how you can use Ensemble Video please contact Joshua Perks in the Instructional Media Library (  or 349-9096) or visit the Media Library page at .

Did You Know?

Our BOCES email server processed more than 13 million emails this past school year.  Take a look at the breakdown.

3 million – number of emails sent by and between BOCES staff
4 million – number of emails received from people outside BOCES, including junkmail that goes to your inbox or junkmail folder
6 million – number of emails (junkmail) that were blocked by the BOCES email server

And you thought you got a lot of junkmail. 

How Do I?

Each of our BOCES buildings has been equipped with Xerox copiers that you can print to over the network from most computers.  This is a nice option for those higher volume print requests or for staff who do not have access to a printer nearby.  You may be reluctant to print to a public copier down the hall for fear that someone else may accidentally pick up your copies or you have sensitive information that you don’t want sitting there for others to see. 

Fear not.  You can actually send a secure print request to the copier that will stay in the queue and print only after you have swiped your ID badge at the copier to release it.  Here’s how it works:

Go to the print command in your document and choose the appropriate Xerox copier in your menu of available printers.  Next, click on Printer Properties, Preferences or Print Options depending on what program you are using.  When the Xerox dialog box comes up, under “Job Type” switch the type from Normal Print to Secure Print.  (see first image below) When you are done selecting any additional printing/finishing options, click OK and then click on Print to send your request.

When you’re ready, go to the Xerox copier you sent your print request to and login by swiping your ID badge.  Push the Job Status button to the left of the touch screen.  Your print request should appear under the Secure Print Jobs tab on the screen.  Using the touch screen, tap your queued print request and then tap “Release” in the pop-up menu that appears. (see second image below)   It’s as simple as that.  Don’t forget to logout of the copier when you’re done.   For questions about network printing please contact Tech Support at 349-9011.

For larger print jobs or custom orders please keep in mind we have a full service print shop available to meet your needs.  To learn more please call 349-9074.