Stay secure online


Follow these guidelines to protect your data and Duke systems:

  1. Choose a long, complex password and protect it with LastPass.
    Consider using a password that has 11 or more characters. Your NetID password must contain a combination of upper- and lowercase letters as well as a minimum of one digit or special character. Your NetID password should be unique to that account, use different passwords for various accounts, and don’t share your password with others.
    LastPass, a password escrow tool, is available free and allows you to generate long, complex passwords for each individual account and securely stores them so that you don't have to remember them: Once you have your LastPass account, visit This page to upgrade to a free Premium LastPass account
  2. Use multi-factor authentication.
    Multi-factor authentication, also referred to as advanced or two-factor authentication, provides an additional layer of security when logging in or performing transactions online. Any Duke user can set up multi-factor authentication for their NetID and select which websites will use it. See for details. Also consider taking advantage of multi-factor services provided by online vendors such as Google, Facebook, Dropbox, Twitter, InstagramApple, Microsoft, and many more. For an in depth overview of where you can apply additional security by enabling multifactor see the Two Factor Auth List.
  3. Install anti-virus software.
    Several free anti-virus solutions are available for use on personal machines.
  4. Protect mobile devices from theft using Prey. Consider installing Prey anti-theft software on your laptop, phone and tablets. Prey, an open source anti-theft solution available for multiple platforms on various devices, can help alert and locate devices if they are lost or stolen:
  5. Use the Duke Virtual Private Network. Use the VPN when accessing services remotely, especially when traveling. Remember that hotel and coffee shop networks are not secure.
  6. Consider using encryption. Talk to your IT department about encrypting your Duke-owned computer, or visit our whole disk encryption page for suggestions to help encrypt personal machines.