Student Affairs IT

Home Computer Security


Keep your computer up-to-date with security patches


Windows and Mac OS are both able to auto-update.  We recommend you enable/turn on that functionality and promptly restart your computer after updates are installed, as required.   In addition, it is just as important to keep your helper applications, such as Acrobat, Flash and Java up-to-date.  Those programs are the main target for malware makers and so we also recommend you allow those programs to self-update.


One tool we use to help us update our PCs at work is called Secunia and there is a free version for home use as well.   This kind of program can help you keep tabs on the status of your software. You can learn more here:


Install an Anti-Virus/Anti-Malware product to protect your computer


Both Mac and PC users are advised to install Anti-Virus/Anti-Malware tools to protect their computer.   The UO has a site license for McAfee Antivirus that you can install for free, even on your personal use computers. You can find it at  There are also a variety of other great free Antivirus tools, such as Microsoft Security Essentials for PC, or Sophos for Mac or PC.


Upgrade any computers using Windows XP


Microsoft is ending support for Windows XP on April 8, 2014.  This means that Microsoft will no longer be providing any security patches for the product.  Malware makers are eagerly awaiting this date to attack the millions of computers still running this operating system.   If your computer is able to connect to the internet and still running Windows XP, you need to upgrade your operating system to a newer version by April 8 to avoid infection.  

If your hardware is capable, Microsoft advises you to upgrade from XP to Windows 8.1.  If your hardware is not capable, Microsoft advises you to update your computer.


There is a tutorial process provided by Microsoft for updating your Windows OS here:


Resources Available to You


While we cannot directly assist you with home computer repairs or upgrades, we are happy to talk with you about these topics. Feel free to contact the SAIT Helpdesk at or call us at 541-346-1130 for assistance.  


As a UO employee you are also eligible for assistance with personal home hardware repair and upgrades via the UO Technology Service Desk in McKenzie Hall.  Please visit their website at for more information on how to contact them for cost estimates and appointments.




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