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Password Procedure FAQ

To change your password, please visit http://account.tcnj.edu

TCNJ account passwords expire every 90 days (beginning in October 2013).  Here are some answers to frequently asked questions.

Why?
We can probably think of a dozen or so reasons to not change our passwords including the number of devices where we’ll need to update our TCNJ account (smartphone, computer, tablet), the number of different systems where we use our TCNJ account (computer login, wireless, PAWS, YESS, HR, etc.), to committing an unchanging longer secure password to memory instead of writing it down.

However, the College is constantly being probed from the Internet and by internal computers infected with malware.  Many of these attacks exploit weak passwords.  Our security devices detect and stop over 425,000 such probes every day.  There have been several instances where students’ accounts were accessed due to poor password habits.  This is unacceptable.

Approximately three TCNJ email accounts are locked each week, sometimes as many as 3 or 4 per day, because the account holder responded to an email phishing scam.  These accounts are detected because cybercriminals use them for malicious activity.  We expect there are more that are not detected by our security systems.  By having a password expire every 90 days these compromised accounts will no longer be usable by cybercriminals.

The two IT audits from 2012 recommended a 90 day password change interval and PCI compliance mandates a 90 day password change interval.  Further, periodic password changes are recognized as an IT Security best practice to provide more protection to what is unilaterally recognized as the weakest part of any IT system: the user account password.

What?
You will be notified that your password will be expiring in 30 days and again at 14 days via email.  Then, beginning at 7 days to expiration you’ll receive daily email notices.  This will provide ample time to think of a new password.  You’ll be able to change your password at any time – you don’t need to wait for it to expire before changing your password.  And then you’ll enjoy a full 90 days from that date before having to change it again.  The email message you receive will resemble this:

The College of New Jersey – Password Administration

Note: Your TCNJ password will expire in five days.
Hello. Your TCNJ password is nearing expiration.  It will expire on [date].

Please do NOT reply to this email. You are NOT being asked to divulge your account name or password via email.  Please visit the TCNJ Account Manager website (http://account.tcnj.edu) to change your password.  Please visit the TCNJ Information Technology Help Desk web page (http://helpdesk.pages.tcnj.edu/) for instructions to change your password.

TCNJ account passwords expire every 90 days. Please see the TCNJ password procedure for verification of this message and further information.

You may also contact the TCNJ Information Technology Help Desk to verify the validity of this message at 609-771-2660 or helpdesk@tcnj.edu.

The Information Technology Security Program website has information to help identify email phishing scams – Phishing scam identification

After your password expires, you can no longer access the following services:
Email
Wireless access (on campus)
Campus Computer Logins
YESS
PAWS
SOCS/Canvas
All other TCNJ resources that require logins

 

How?
Please visit http://account.tcnj.edu to configure security questions in the TIMS password manager for future password resets in the event you forget your password or your password expires.

Passwords must:
– be at least 9 characters long and can be up to 32 characters long
– contain at least one upper case character
– contain at least one lower case character
– contain at least one numeric character
– Symbols, such as ! # @ % ^ & ? +, are encouraged but not required.

Where?
You can change your password at any time by using a web browser from virtually any type of device either from home or on campus.  Simply visit http://account.tcnj.edu.

What if I need more help?
For more information and to verify that an account related message you received is not a spam or phishing message, please visit http://security.pages.tcnj.edu/passwords or call or visit the TCNJ help desk at 609-771-2660.

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