Renfrewshire Council

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Benefits of being cyber savvy

Cyber security architect Carol Peters reminds us to stay safe online and protect Council systems and information.

Carol Peters This Cyber Scotland Week (Monday 26 February to Friday 1 March), I want to thank those of you who have got in touch to tell me about your near miss experiences with cyber scams. It's good to hear that the training and information shared through staff news is having such a positive impact and is helping you to keep safe both at work and at home.  

Earlier this month, youth homeless prevention officer Duncan McEwan told us how the knowledge and skills he has learned at work helped him to avoid a phishing scam when shopping online. With missed delivery email scams become ever more common, Duncan's story was a reminder of just how convincing phishing emails can be and how vital it is that we all know how to spot the signs and safely deal with a potential threat.

How to deal with a possible scam

Scams can come through any form of online communication like email, instant message, and social media.

1. If you spot an unusual message:

  • you should delete it immediately.
  • Do not follow any hyperlinks, open any attachments, or forward the message to anyone, including ICT.

2. If you think you have interacted with or responded to a possible threat incorrectly, it is vital you act quickly to minimise any danger. Stay calm and immediately:

  • Stop using your laptop/PC/device
  • Call the ICT Service Desk by phone on 0141 487 0000. Remember, the sooner you contact us the sooner we can help.

Protect our network, protect yourself

If you haven't already completed your mandatory cyber security training on iLearn, make sure you do this as soon as possible. It takes around 25 minutes and all you have to do is watch a short video and complete the quick quiz to test your knowledge on spotting a phishing email and staying safe online.

Once you have completed the training, I strongly recommend that you revisit it at least once-a-year to keep the information fresh in your mind. You can also keep up to date with our latest staff news articles and get more helpful info and advice from trusted sources like the National Cyber Security Centre and RenSafeOnline.

Cyber security and protecting Council data from fraud go hand-in-hand.

Our systems should only be used for official Council purposes, and you should only access the information you need to carry out your role.

If you are asked by a third-party or by someone from outside the council to find out and pass on confidential information, you must report this to our colleagues in the Data Protection Team immediately and follow their instructions.

Make sure you have the understanding and awareness you need to protect the Council's data by also completing your mandatory data protection training as soon as possible.

Remember, protecting the Council network is everyone's responsibility. Play your part and learn to stay safe online today.

Published on Friday 01 March 2024