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An Introduction to Type

Co-authored with Andrea J. Wenger, the original article appeared in the February 2017 Intercom magazine of the Society for Technical Communication and is reprinted with permission. When I first started to study personality and temperament types, I didn’t realize the differences between the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator and the Keirsey Temperament Sorter. Even when these systems

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Free meRIT webinar, noon Eastern, 8 November–An Introvert’s Journey to Leadership

Join me at noon Eastern on Wednesday, 8 November  as I share An Introvert’s Journey to Leadership as a meRIT alumni webinar.  Attendance is open to all. https://lnkd.in/ewabirr I’ll provide a link to the YouTube recording as soon as it’s available. This is a great opportunity to learn more about how I’ve learned about my introversion

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Introverted Leadership Reading List

In our mentoring and coaching relationships, we’ve identified several books that you may find helpful as emerging introverted leaders. Understanding Personality and Temperament Briggs Myers, Isabel and Myers, Peter B., Gifts Differing: Understanding Personality Type Provides an easy-to-read overview of the MBTI. Important for providing the basics of Myers-Briggs Temperament theory. The MBTI focuses on

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Lessons Learned on an Introvert’s Journey to Leadership

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Note: This article was previously published on October 17, 2016 in the EDUCAUSE Review The Professional Commons Blog. Many of us might agree that Western society lauds extroverted leaders and their accomplishments. However, introverts make great contributions and can be effective leaders too. As IT professionals, many of you are introverts, and you certainly work with

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Building a Culture of Digital Self-Defense

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Note: This article was previously published on September 20, 2016 in the EDUCAUSE Review Security Matters Blog One of the biggest challenges in information security is raising the awareness of our communities so that they recognize threats and understand how to defend themselves. The difficulty of that challenge is exacerbated with up to 30 percent

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Recruiting Volunteers

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Recruiting Volunteers Volunteers are the life blood of non-profit organizations. However, recruiting volunteers may be challenging. I had the privilege of presenting with Alice Brzovic, President of the San Diego Chapter of the Society for Technical Communication on a leadership webinar on July 22, 2016. Alice had a number of great ideas around volunteer recruitment, especially in

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What Value Does STC Provide to Its Communities?

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This post is a continuation of the ongoing discussion about the Society for Technical Communication to which I’ve been contributing on Larry Kunz’s excellent Leading Technical Communication blog (http://larrykunz.wordpress.com). Larry recently posted An Agile STC? Much of the discussion has been around what value STC provides to its communities. As I took part in the conversation, I’ve realized that this is

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Continued Thoughts on an Agile STC

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I’ve been contributing to an ongoing conversation about the Society for Technical Communication on Larry Kunz’s excellent Leading Technical Communication blog (http://larrykunz.wordpress.com) where he’s recently posted An Agile STC? As I’ve taken part in the conversation, I’ve realized that this is a subject I should be writing about as well. I’ll start by sharing some of

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The Content Era: Thought Leader Thursday Featuring Ben Woelk

Listen to the recorded session from Thursday, July 21st on The Content Era: Thought Leader Thursday hosted by Tom Aldous, where I spoke about Introverted Leadership and my leadership journey. I also shared how I’m leveraging my STC Summit 2016 presentation, An Introvert’s Journey to Leadership, to mentor introverted leaders and start building a virtual community to discuss issues affecting them and share resources.

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Summit Proceedings: An Introvert’s Journey to Leadership

One of the responsibilities for STC Summit presenters is to provide a paper for the Proceedings that are intended for use by libraries and instructors. Here’s my contribution: AN INTROVERT’S JOURNEY TO LEADERSHIP Many of us might agree that Western society lauds extroverted leaders and their accomplishments. However, introverts make great contributions and can be effective leaders

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Group Rules for Our Introverted Leadership Community

Group Rules for Our Introverted Leadership Community About three days into creating the Introverted Leadership virtual community on Slack, I realized it would probably be a good idea to set up group rules to create an atmosphere where we could share safely. The rules below are merged from a variety of sources. I believe that

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community

Building a Virtual Introverted Leader Community

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Building a Virtual Introverted Leader Community Anyone who is at all connected to me on social media has seen my Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter posts about the Introverted Leadership Slack Channel I’ve set up. I wanted to share what’s happened so far and my my vision for this nascent virtual community. Background At the Society

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Keeping the Magic of Summit Alive

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Keeping the Magic of Summit Alive STC Summit Anaheim was my ninth Summit! For the last several years, I’ve almost always returned from Summit energized, excited to have made new connections, sad about saying goodbye to friends that I see only once a year, and full of new ideas that I want to try. Invariably,

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An Introvert’s Journey to Leadership

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An Introvert’s Journey to Leadership I had the privilege of presenting An Introvert’s Journey to Leadership at the STC Summit Conference in Anaheim. I was a bit apprehensive about the presentation, because I was talking about myself and sharing stories that made me vulnerable. (As an introvert, that’s not something I’m comfortable doing.) The response

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Collaborating Securely: Protecting Your Community and Yourself

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Collaborating Securely: Protecting Your Community and Yourself I had the privilege of presenting Collaborating Securely: Protecting Your Community and Yourself to a room full of community leaders from the Society for Technical Communication. Collaborating securely: Protecting Your Community and Yourself from Ben Woelk, CISSP

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What’s in a Name (and a Price)

I’ve changed the subtitle of my Kindle eBook on using social media safely to better communicate the subject matter. I’ve also lowered the price point to $0.99. The book sold reasonably well during the week-long reduce price promotion as a Kindle Countdown book, so I’ve reduced the price. Thank you to my reviewers for providing their

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Shockproofing Book Cover

Shockproofing Your Use of Social Media eBook available!

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My Shockproofing Your Use of Social Media: 10 Things You Should Know eBook is now available on Kindle! For those of you who have attended one of my Lightning Talks about Internet Safety, this book fleshes out my recommendations for keeping safe online. Please consider buying a copy. You’re welcome to lend your copy out

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Updated Shock-proofing your Use of Social Media Presentation

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I’ve updated my Shock-proofing your Use of Social Media presentation for the Fall 2014 New Student Orientation program at the Rochester Institute of Technology. I’ve changed the passphrase example, added a new cartoon, and generally worked to make the presentation more culturally relevant to 18 to 20 year olds. Let me know what you think

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A Techcomm Bestiary, Summit14 edition

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I’ve changed out one slide from the Spectrum14 presentation. Looking forward to presenting this to a crowd at the STC Summit in Phoenix.

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A Techcomm Bestiary, Spectrum 2014

I thought this came together pretty well and I had a great time presenting my first revision of A Techcomm Bestiary at STC Rochester’s Spectrum 2014. I may make a couple of slide changes before the STC Summit, but this is the meat of the presentation. Putting this talk together was quite the experience, as

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The Secure Communicator–upcoming webinar

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Has the Heartbleed bug made you more aware of the challenges you face trying to protect confidential or private information online? I’ll address the impacts of Heartbleed and other threats to your security in “The Secure Communicator,” an STC Education webinar on Thursday, June 5, at 5 pm EDT (GMT-4). I’ll provide registration details as soon

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Cyber Self Defense Reading List

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I’ve created a reading list of books about Cyber Security suitable for both general readers and readers with a technical background. If there’s something you think I should add, either comment here or on the list in Goodreads.

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Beware of Good Ole Scammer Claus

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I’m sharing the contents of an advisory I sent out to the RIT community regarding holiday scams and phishing attempts. I think you’ll find the information helpful. Beware of Good Ole Scammer Claus! As we head towards our holiday break, remember that there are many scammers trying to trick you into revealing credit card numbers

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A Techcomm Bestiary–My Next Lightning Talk

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I’m developing a new lightning talk using the concept of a medieval bestiary. A bestiary is an illustrated compendium of beasts, popular in the middle ages. Bestiaries introduced people to real and fantastical creatures that they would never encounter. This Lightning Talk will provide a bestiary of techcomm practitioners, many of which you WILL encounter

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Technical Communications Skills Map

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Technical Communications Skills Map | Red Gate Software Development. Have you wondered about the job possibilities available to you as a technical communicator? This skills map by Brian Harris provides a great view of where core techcomm skills can take you. Are there any areas you would add? For me, information security fits into both domain

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Leaders Come In All Personality Types

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Guest post from Hannah Morgan. This post will also appear on careersherpa.net, sherpaandguru.com, and notebook.stc.org. You don’t need to be the most talkative, outgoing person in the room to be a leader. Instead, all you need to do is tap into the innate strengths of your introverted self. Quiet Giants Where would we be today without

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Scam, scams, everywhere scams!

We received a call at home tonight from a Microsoft-certified repair technician at Technical Department of Windows Support. (Yes, the name she gave us. Think she was reading from a script?) The woman on the phone said that they had been contracted by Microsoft and that our computer had been sending out spam for the

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STC President Nicky Bleiel Interview with Marcus Hunt from Owners Manual

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Great interview by STC President Nicky Bleiel of Marcus Hunt from AMC’s Owners Manual. Marcus is quite complimentary of technical communicators and their dedication of producing a well-written manual. Marcus also describes the usefulness of video in conveying a lot of information in a short time. (The picture on the left is from Episode Four. It

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Upcoming Owners Manual series on AMC

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Ever have trouble trying to figure out how to use something correctly? Ever make a BIG mistake? Ever wonder about the importance of usability in product design? Most of us can hop into a car and drive it successfully, although we may not always understand all of the bells and whistles. (I just learned that

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Brief Thoughts on XKCD: The Pace of Modern Life

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This XKCD comic is an entertaining look into the perception of the changes in communication brought on by the increased pace of society–more than 100 years ago! It reminds me of reading The Victorian Internet: The Remarkable Story of the Telegraph and the Nineteenth Century’s On-line Pioneers, an interesting look at the change brought by the completion

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Vendor infographic: Building a Secure Wifi Network for Your Business

Some good information here. Infographic authored by goWiFi, a provider of managed WiFi solutions. To view the original post, check out the original Wi-Fi infographic.

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Visualizing Your Professional Network

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Did you know that LinkedIn Labs provides a graphical representation of your professional network? It’s similar to a hyperbolic browser I saw demonstrated several years ago in a research facility in Silicon Valley. The map allows you to hover over each point and provides a popup of your connection. After spending last week at the

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Ben Woelk Receives STC Distinguished Chapter Service Award | STC Rochester Chapter

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Ben Woelk Receives STC Distinguished Chapter Service Award | STC Rochester Chapter. I was truly humbled and honored to receive the Society for Technical Communication‘s Distinguished Chapter Service Award (DCSA) for my work over the last few years with the Rochester Chapter. The citation on the award reads: For your unwavering dedication, willingness to initiate

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Get On Board! Entraining Volunteers

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I’m delivering the presentation below as part of a progression at Summit 2013 Leadership Day in Atlanta. Summit Leadership Day provides STC community leaders with the knowledge and guidance they need to lead successful communities, both geographic chapters and SIGs. Volunteers are the heart of the community. They enable us to offer meaningful services to

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Empowering the Introvert Within | Bulletproofing Your Career Online

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Empowering the Introvert Within | Bulletproofing Your Career Online. Preview Hannah (Careersherpa.net) and Ben’s newest presentation, Empowering the Introvert Within: Becoming an Outstanding Leader. Presentations are currently scheduled in Rochester at Spectrum, March 22, 2013 and in Atlanta at the STC Summit, May 6, 2013. Contact us at info@bulletproofingyourcareeronline.com if you’d like us to provide a

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More on Security and Google Tips from @benwoelk and @careersherpa #stcpmc13 | ed marsh dot com

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More on Security and Google Tips from @benwoelk and @careersherpa #stcpmc13 | ed marsh dot com. Ed Marsh’s review of our Bulletproofing Your Career Online Keynote and Workshop at the STC Philly Metro’s Mid Atlantic Technical Communication Conference in March 2013. Thanks Ed!

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Would You Like to BulletProof YOUR Career Online?

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I’ve partnered with Hannah Morgan (careersherpa.net, @careersherpa) to produce our Bulletproofing Your Career Online workshop. We’ve presented Bulletproofing Your Career Online at regional and international conferences in 2012. We’re privileged to provide the keynote at STCPMC13, the annual Society for Technical Communication Philadelphia Metro Chapter’s Mid Atlantic Technical Communication Conference at the Giant Conference Center

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Why I Want to Serve as a Director for the Society for Technical Communication

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If you’ve visited this site recently, you may have noticed that there’s a menu link to Ben Woelk for STC Director. I was asked by the nominating committee of the Society for Technical Communication to run for a Board position. The Board is the elected leadership of the Society and serves without remuneration. STC is

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Speaking Schedule, January-June 2013

Speaking Schedule Updated 1-15-13 10 January 2013. Bullet Proofing Your Career Online, Genesee Valley Chapter, ASTD, Roberts Wesleyan College, Rochester, New York, with Hannah Morgan 8 March 2013, Keynote: Bullet Proofing Your Career Online, Mid-Atlantic Technical Communication Conference, Philly Metro Chapter STC, Giant Conference Center, Willow Grove, PA, with Hannah Morgan 9 March 2013, Workshop: Bullet

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Guide Dogs and Information Security: Raising Them to Enable

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My thoughts on another challenge facing infosec offices in higher education. It reflects my thoughts, and not necessarily those of my employer. We had the privilege of being puppy raisers for Guiding Eyes for the Blind, an organization that provides assistance dogs for the visually impaired. Our role was to help the puppy become a

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Infosec Strategies: Creating Centralized Efficiencies in a Decentralized IT Environment

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My thoughts on one of the challenges facing infosec offices in higher education. It reflects my thoughts, and not necessarily those of my employer. The institutional challenge of creating centralized cost-effective efficiencies in an environment with a strong tradition of localized, decentralized IT solutions and personnel is normative in higher education. An Information Security Office

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RIT InfoSec Awareness: an Interview With Ben Woelk

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RIT InfoSec Awareness an Interview With Ben Woelk. Read my interview with RIT alumnus Neil DuPaul on the Veracode Blog where we discuss how we’re increasing information security awareness at the Rochester Institute of Technology. What do you think of the cards? Related articles Digital Self Defense for Incoming Students at RIT Presentation

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Simplifying Password Complexity

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Let’s be honest. Passwords are a pain. We all know that it’s important to have different passwords for different places and we all know that they need to be fairly complex. We also know that remembering numerous passwords, especially strong passwords, can be a challenge. So what’s the best strategy? In this article, I’ll talk

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Facebook Security Audit

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A friend shared this post by Ian Anderson Gray today. I think the information is pretty worthwhile. What do you think?

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Amazing Mind Reader Security Awareness Video

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One of our student workers at the RIT Information Security Office shared this security awareness video from YouTube. What do you think of it?

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Digital Self Defense for Incoming Students at RIT Presentation

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We had a great time presenting to our 2800-person incoming class at the Rochester Institute of Technology. Here’s the YouTube video of the five presentations (Hannah Morgan, Dawn Soufleris, Nick Francesco, Jon Maurer, and Ben Woelk) aptly emcee’d by Chris Tarantino. Click on the screenshot to watch the show!

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A Lightning Fast Introduction to Digital Self Defense

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Each year at the Rochester Institute of Technology we introduce the concepts of Digital Self Defense to incoming students. We’ve tried a variety of presentation types and venues, ranging from several sets of co-presenters talking with “smaller” groups of students to one presenter in front of the 2000+ students at our Gordon Field House. We

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Save the date! Bulletproofing Your Career Online live webinar 8/2, 4-5 pm EDT

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Hannah Morgan and I will be presenting Bulletproofing Your Career Online as an STC webinar on Thursday, 2 August | 4:00–5:00 PM EDT (GMT-4) What are the 10 key steps to building and securing your online reputation? A security professional and a career sherpa provide their perspectives on how to create an online presence that

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Engage! Creating a Meaningful Security Awareness Program (Updated)

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7/12/12 Updated with seminar slides! Engage! Creating a Meaningful Security Awareness Program View more PowerPoint from Ben Woelk This may start quite the discussion, but it’s a viable argument that good Information Security practices are primarily about people, not technology. Do you need help creating a security awareness program? Would you like to use social

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A review of Petrilli, The Introvert’s Guide to Success in Business and Leadership

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Reading this book as an introverted leader, I’m encouraged to see that Lisa recommends and extends many of the same techniques I’ve found essential. I found that meeting individually with members of my admin council was a key enabler in a successful year. I also appreciated knowing that an introvert can rise to C level

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Congratulations! Congratulations!! Congratulations!!! You are a Winner in the Microsoft Promotion!!

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                                                           I received the email above today. Should I provide the information requested so I can start the process to claim my £500,000.00 GBR prize? Did anyone else receive this? Maybe I’m one of the lucky ten!

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Bulletproofing Your Career Online—Ben Woelk & Hannah Morgan

Jamie Gillenwater’s review of @careersherpa’s and @benwoelk’s presentation at #stc12 in May.

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Password Strength Comic

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This would fit right into my Ten Tips to Shockproof Your Use of Social Media Lightning Talk, except that it probably takes more than 15 seconds to read. Courtesy of XKCD Which of these passwords appears to be stronger? Are you surprised? Passphrases are easy to remember and harder to crack! Related articles STC Summit

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Bridge Building: Establishing Communications Processes

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This past fall we had the privilege of visiting Pont du Gard, a Roman bridge and aqueduct in Languedoc in the south of France. Although built primarily without mortar (except for the top course of blocks), Pont du Gard has endured for more than 2000 years, despite frequent spring floods. The Pont du Gard aqueduct/bridge

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Twitter Use at #STC12 Summit

For the two year anniversary of this blog, we’ll review Twitter use at the STC Summit conference. Twitter use among attendees continues to grow dramatically. Although this post only looks at tweets during the dates of the Summit (May 19-24), use of the #stc12 hashtag began months before the conference and continues today. Methodology Unlike

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InformationWeek Mobile Edition – 9 Tips To Block Hotel Wi-Fi Malware

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We often take for granted (or don’t even think about) the security of hotel Wi-Fi as we travel. For most of us, the convenience outweighs the risk. There are steps we can take to keep our computers and data safer. The folks at Information Week have published a nifty little article, “9 Tips To Block

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RIT Hosts Annual Spectrum Conference – YNN, Your News Now

RIT Hosts Annual Spectrum Conference – YNN, Your News Now.

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Naked Security–Dirty Tricks with Android Apps

http://nakedsecurity.sophos.com/2012/04/26/dirty-tricks-android-apps/?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=status+message&utm_campaign=naked+security

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Bullet Proofing Your Career Online, Spectrum 2012

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The brilliant Hannah Morgan and I presented Bullet Proofing Your Career Online at the STC Rochester Spectrum Conference. We’ll be presenting again at the STC Technical Communications Summit in Rosemont, IL in May. You won’t be able to experience our incredibly witty repartee, but I’ve embedded the slides below.

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Avoiding the Botnet Snare

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“Why would anyone attack my computer? I don’t have anything of value on it.” Is this your mindset? Although the goal of many attacks may be identity theft or financial gain, there are other reasons for someone to attack your computer. Of the many types of malware (malicious software) attacks, one of the most serious

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Updated: 2012 Speaking Schedule, January through June

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I’ll be speaking at the following events this winter and spring. Watch for my presentation materials on SlideShare. January 9: HEISC (Higher Education Information Security Council), Town Hall. Recording available. January 30:  Bullet Proofing Your Career Online (with Hannah Morgan, @careersherpa), ABCPNG (Always Be Connecting Power Networking Group), First Unitarian Church, Rochester, New York Description:

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Making Information Security Fun

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I shared this presentation at the October program meeting of the Rochester Chapter of the Society for Technical Communication. The presentation demonstrates how the Information Security Office at the Rochester Institute of Technology used marketing techniques to reinforce key messages to raise awareness around information security concerns such as phishing. To see more about how

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Announcing the RIT Cyber Self Defense Student Blog

I teach a section of Cyber Self Defense, a security awareness course at the Rochester Institute of Technology. We always have a number of interesting discussions about current infosec issues. I believe these discussions would be of interest to a wider audience, and especially to readers of the Infosec Communicator blog. This fall, we’ve created

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Top Ten Tips for Safe(r) Social Networking

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Did you know you’re a target every time you go online? Did you know that cyber criminals are targeting social networking sites? Do you know how to recognize a phishing attempt? Following these tips will help make your use of social networking sites safer. (Unfortunately, there’s no way to guarantee that you can use them

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Updated: Choosing the Safest Browser, Part One

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This post provides an update to last year’s Choosing the Safest Browser post. Let’s take a look at what’s changed since June 2010. Browsers Last year, we looked at the following browsers to discuss which would be the safest: Opera Firefox Safari Internet Explorer Google Chrome Number of Vulnerabilities How do you decide which browser

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Choosing the Safest Browser, Part 2

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Safe Practices Check your Browser Security Settings How can you tell how secure your web browser may be? Scanit’s Browser Security Test checks your browser security settings and provides a report explaining the vulnerabilities, the potential impacts, and how to correct them. Use Security Software Your security software should include an antivirus, anti-spyware, and a

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Avoiding Phishing

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What’s the easiest way to break into a computer account? Cracking the password? Putting a trojan on the computer? Hacking? Unfortunately, it’s simply tricking you into giving up your password through a technique known as phishing. Computers have vulnerabilities that can be exploited by attackers using different types of malware. However, your attacker is as

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Parenting in the Cyber Age: A Parents’ Guide to Safer Social Networking

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Are you as a parent worried about what your kids may encounter online? Are you unsure of how they or you can stay safe online when using social networking sites?  Although our kids are now college grads, we had the same concerns about the dangers our kids faced online as most of you do. In

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Unpacking My Takeaways from #STC11

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It’s been a little less than two weeks since the Society for Technical Communication Summit in Sacramento ended. Summit was an intensive four day immersion in the multifaceted profession of technical communications. I wanted to share what I found really important about the event, before the memories fade. I’ll start unpacking my takeaways here and

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How Much Does Facebook Know About You? The Two Facebook Dogs Revisited

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I attended RIT’s Faculty Institute for Teaching and Learning this week. Mark Greenfield, SUNY Buffalo, delivered a keynote on “Born to be Wired: Technology, Communication, and the Millennial Generation.” There was a lot of useful content, and I encourage you to follow Mark Greenfield on Twitter (@markgr) and check out his resources posted on Delicious.

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Ten Ways to Shockproof Your Use of Social Networking Lightning Talk

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I had the privilege of presenting my 25-minute presentation on Shockproofing Your Use of Social Media as a five-minute Lightning Talk at the STC Summit in Sacramento on May 18th. Lightning talks introduce an additional element of stress for the presenters: the slides advance every 15 seconds whether they’re ready or not. Our audience was

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Twitter Use at #STC11 Summit

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Last year, I kicked off this blog by posting about Twitter Use at the #STC10 Summit in Dallas. I thought it would be interesting to look at Twitter use at #STC11 as well. Methodology I’ve only analyzed results from May 13-21, 2011. However, use of the #STC11 hashtag occurred for months preceding this year’s Summit

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Communications Liftoff! Rocketing Your Community to the Stars

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Society for Technical Communication Summit Conference Leadership Day Presentation, May 15, 2011 Join the discussion on MySTC at http://ow.ly/51WfG Communications liftoff! rocketing your community v3[gigya width=”425″ height=”355″ src=”http://static.slidesharecdn.com/swf/ssplayer2.swf?doc=communicationsliftoffrocketingyourcommunityv3-110516012143-phpapp02&stripped_title=communications-liftoff-rocketing-your-community-v3-7976829&userName=bwoelk” quality=”high” flashvars=”gig_lt=1305529009890&gig_pt=1305529176796&gig_g=1&gig_n=wordpress” wmode=”tranparent” allowfullscreen=”true” ] View more presentations from Ben Woelk

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Digital Self Defense for Technical Communicators, Part Three

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Digital Self Defense for Technical Communicators was first published in the Society for Technical Communication‘s Intercom magazine in November 2010. How We’ve Communicated These Concepts at RIT Higher education is a mix of cutting-edge and legacy computing systems. Unlike many large companies, most universities and colleges continue to use computing equipment well past its retirement

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Digital Self Defense for Technical Communicators, Part Two

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Digital Self Defense for Technical Communicators was first published in the Society for Technical Communication‘s Intercom magazine in November 2010.  Best Practices for Safer Social Networking Organized crime is increasingly targeting users of social networking sites. Many computer criminals uses these sites to distribute viruses and malware, to find private information people have posted publicly,

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Digital Self Defense for Technical Communicators, Part One

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Digital Self Defense for Technical Communicators was first published in the Society for Technical Communication‘s Intercom magazine in November 2010. I’ll be reproducing the article in several parts over the next few days. What do technical communicators need to know about information security? How do they protect both their private information and professional assets, including

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Secure Mobile-an Oxymoron? (Redux)

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Responses to the #1 topic on IdeaScale, “Consumers dictate device usage, not IT,” indicate that MANY of you believe consumers will drive smartphone adoption in Higher Education, while the sentiment around the topic, “Get rid of the walls around your enterprise data,” indicates that quite a few of you believe that core university data should

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Mobile Devices: Paradigm Shift or Just Another Content Delivery Mechanism?

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I’m curious about whether you think the integration of mobile devices into curricula is a “game changer/paradigm shift” or whether you regard it as just another content delivery mechanism. As a technical communicator, I’ve looked at the mobile device primarily as an additional delivery vehicle; a channel that can be used to reach others. As

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Apps for Integrating Mobile Devices into Classroom Use and Campus Communications

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How many of you are integrating mobile devices into classroom work? In addition to my role as Policy and Awareness Analyst, I teach a couple of classes, Cyber Self Defense and Effective Technical Communication. We discuss secure use of mobile devices in the Cyber Self Defense class. We’ve also talked about potential attacks on mobile

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Irony

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I received the following notification today: DHS Announces the Release of New Training Course Workplace Security Awareness No-Cost Critical Infrastructure Workplace Security Training The Department of Homeland Security announces the availability of IS-906, Workplace Security Awareness, a no-cost training course developed by the Office of Infrastructure Protection Sector-Specific Agency Executive Management Office. Access IS-906 on

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Technical Communicator 419 Scheme

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The STC Europe SIG has a great parody post today on a Nigerian 419 scheme with a twist: They want access to your bank account to impose penalties for not turning the writing/editing assignments around quickly enough. DEFINITELY WORTH A READ.

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Why Professional Conferences Matter

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I’ve heard a lot of discussion recently that professional conferences aren’t needed anymore because of the inter-connectivity afforded by the Internet. Why is it reasonable to spend hundreds or even a couple of thousand dollars to attend a face-to-face conference? Over the last week, I’ve been part of the leadership teams for and attended two

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Top Ten Ways to Shockproof Your Use of Social Media

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How do you stay safe online? Here are ten ways to shockproof your use of social media: Tip #1: Use strong passwords Tip #2: Keep your computer patched and updated Tip #3: Use appropriate security software Tip #4: Learn to recognize phishing and other scams Tip #5: Use social networks safely Tip #6: Remember who

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Call for Proposals, Spectrum 2011 (April 1, 2011)

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Spectrum 2011 – Building Better Solutions: A Skills Symposium Rochester Chapter, Society for Technical Communication (STC) Submittal deadline: December 17, 2010 You and your colleagues are invited to submit proposals for Spectrum 2011. Spectrum is the annual educational conference of the Rochester Chapter of the Society for Technical Communication (STC). STC is an international professional

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Digital Self Defense Workshop 101 (RRLC)

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I had the pleasure of presenting the following presentation to the Rochester Regional Library Council on Oct. 25th. It contains general Internet and computer safety tips and is slightly modified from a session we provide to faculty and staff at RIT.

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Developing a Security Mindset

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the goal of the module is to reorient students’ thinking from the features of a product and how those features are supposed to be used to thinking about how someone might “hack” the product. In other words, develop a security mindset.

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Covert Affairs Gets It (mostly) Right

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When television and movies use information security as their storyline, they typically pass up accuracy for the sake of drama. I was pleasantly surprised when a recent episode of Covert Affairs actually got the information security content mostly right.

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New Resources for Security Awareness

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The members of the EDUCAUSE Higher Education Information Security Council (HEISC) Awareness and Training Working Group have created some wiki-based resources to help you with your security awareness initiatives.

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Private Information and Portable Devices

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Image via Wikipedia Today, I had the privilege of being interviewed by our local YNN cable news about the challenges presented by placing private information on portable devices. A surgeon at the University of Rochester Medical Center had lost a flash drive containing the medical details of around 800 of his patients. The reporter, Anne

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Having Fun with Security Awareness–Phishing

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The task of creating a culture of information security awareness in higher education can be a daunting one. You may feel as though your efforts are unnoticed and unrewarded. One of the really cool things about working in higher ed is that universities and colleges are often willing to share their best practices and even the materials they’ve created. This can ease the burden of coming up with new ideas to to help increase user awareness of information security threats.

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Writing the Next Chapter

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Change is necessary but change is uncomfortable. We should ignore the past. We should value the past. We should just do it. We should learn from past efforts. Do we dash forward, make our mistakes and sort things out as we go? Do we assess the path forward and move carefully down it? How strong

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Why I Value STC Rochester

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If you’ve been following this blog over the last month (Thank you!), you know I’ve been writing about how our local STC chapter is redefining its value proposition and rethinking how we engage our membership and the community. This blog entry provides a personal view of why STC Rochester is valuable to me.

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Determining our Value Proposition

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The decline in both local and international membership is causing us to reexamine who we are and what value we bring. In other words, what’s our value proposition?

Our STC Rochester leadership council is working on this issue. What value do we provide to our local members? What value do we provide to our community, especially to local employers?

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Higher Ed, Where’s the Mobile Content?

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In general, the pace of change far exceeds the ability of any large organization to adapt and adopt, be it a professional organization, an educational institution, or many companies. Mobile content is a good example. Although we’ve know that the rate of adoption is high, in a recent Chronicle of Higher Education Wired blog posting, 

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Best Security Awareness Videos for College Students

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Each fall, the RIT Information Security Office provides a Digital Self Defense orientation to first year students. s you might imagine, keeping the attention of these students midway through their orientation week can be challenging…. To help hold their interest, we use a number of security awareness videos in our presentation.

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Is “Secure Mobile” an Oxymoron?

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If you haven’t noticed, mobile device use is pretty much ubiquitous. Apple iPhone/iPod/iPad, Windows Mobile, Palm, Google Android, Blackberry–all of these device families have their own Operating Systems that could be exploited by an attacker.

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Are location services on mobile devices a good thing?

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I’ve always had mixed feelings about the location services offered by various mobile devices and by social networking sites. For example, is it a good thing to let people know where you are when you’re tweeting?

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Choosing the Safest Browser

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There’s always discussion among techies about which internet browser is better. Most of them end up bashing Internet Explorer. Does it really matter which browser you use? Maybe, but not for the reasons you might think. Here’s a list of the five most common browsers, in no particular order: Opera Firefox Safari Internet Explorer Google

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On the Eve of the Latest Facebook Privacy Fix

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A much bigger issue is that we seem to have abrogated OUR responsibility to protect our private information.

Fundamentally, information security is about managing risk. ANY involvement in social networking increases the risk of something negative happening

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Safe(r) Use of Social Media: Facebook, Blogging, and Online Privacy

Concerns over Facebook privacy settings have increasing steadily, with more and more mainstream media running stories about it. Although it is possible to more or less “lockdown” your privacy settings, Facebook makes frequent changes that may require you to review these settings on a regular basis.

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Protect Yourself Online–Anti-Phishing Toolbar

Today I received an Alert from Google that my name had appeared online. (Being in information security breeds paranoia, so I’d set up a Google Alert for occurrences of my name online–and for the rest of my family as well!)

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