Active Malware Policy

What follows is an email which was distributed to the UNC School of Dentistry Community on August 11, 2012 by OCIS Director David Rankin regarding how OCIS handles computers with active malware.


I am writing to you to announce changes in the way OCIS will handle devices we service and support that have active malware (computer viruses or any other malicious software not detected and or automatically resolved by the internal anti-virus, anti-malware protection).

If malware is reported in a computer support ticket or is discovered as part of a routine computer support call, I am requiring OCIS support staff to interactively determine if a device processes or stores sensitive information as defined by the University Information Security Policy. If the device does store or process sensitive information, OCIS staff will be required to contact the University Information Security Office and report the malware as a critical security incident as required in the University Incident Management Policy, pages 4-5. The UNC Information Security Office will then determine how best to proceed for the purposes of preserving evidence and ensuring an audit trail for the investigation of the incident.

I apologize in advance for any inconvenience this may cause. To avoid your computer being infected by malware, please follow these best practices:

  1. Make sure your computer’s firewall, anti-virus and anti-spyware programs are running and are up-to-date. If you are not certain, please contact OCIS.
  2. Make sure your computer is receiving and applying the latest operating system and application patches. If you are not certain, please contact OCIS.
  3. Avoid downloading and installing programs. If you must, then only download programs from websites you trust. If you’re not sure whether to trust a program you are considering downloading, enter the name of the program into your favorite search engine to see if anyone else has reported that it contains spyware.
  4. Carefully read all security warnings, license agreements and privacy statements associated with any software you download.
  5. Never click “Agree” or “OK” to close a window. Instead, click the red “x” in the corner of the window or press Alt + F4 on your keyboard to close a window.
  6. Beware of free programs and be sure you understand all of the software packaged with those programs.
  7. Use a standard user account instead of an administrator account in your day-to-day computer use. For more information about this, contact OCIS to see if you can use a standard user account on your computer.


What is Sensitive Data?

University Incident Management Policy

University Information Security Policy