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Web safety & antivirus

Staying safe online is more important than ever now that we are almost always connected to the internet. Viruses, malware, identity fraud and invasions of privacy can usually be kept at bay following a few quick changes to behaviour and the software you use.

online safety

Follow these basic tips to protect yourself online:

  • Regardless if you're using a smartphone, laptop, tablet or PC there are always important updates. Run Windows Update or your equivalent frequently.
  • When using Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites keep your privacy settings high. Do you really need to put your address and full date of birth up for the world to see?
  • Make sure you have virus protection - see the next tab for information about free Internet Security solutions.
  • Don't post your email address or number on websites and forums, use private messaging.
  • Don't install software from untrusted source.
  • If you get pop-ups proclaiming you have computer problems close them immediately and avoid downloading anything from them.
  • Regularly check your removable storage for viruses.
  • Keep backup copies of your files in more than one location (such as your Y: drive)
  • Never open e-mails containing attachments that you did not expect to receive.

Free antivirus for students and staff

The anti-virus security solution that has been provided by Royal Holloway in the last few years (Kaspersky) is expiring and is being replaced.

We strongly recommend that computers are protected by security software in addition to Windows Defender.


Existing users of Kaspersky on personal computers

If you are currently using a personal copy of Kaspersky which is due to expire imminently, you will be able to obtain a new Kaspersky license code whilst we have them in stock, they will issued on a 1st come first served basis.  You need to be using the current (2015) or penultimate (2014) version of the Kaspersky antivirus software.  Go here to update your licence.

New Students and Staff Personal Computers


Kaspersky will not be available to download onto new personal computers.  We are planning to offer a new free solution for the start of the academic year.  In the interim there are a variety of freely available products that you may wish to consider to protect your computer, here are some examples of what you could try:

Avira                 Avast                 AVG  

This list is not exhaustive, Royal Holloway and the IT Department make no recommendations for any specific product and you should be aware that you install them at your own risk, this includes the removal of any existing Antivirus software.

Additional information can be found here:



College Managed Computers

A new solution for all Royal Holloway managed computers will be communicated in September.  A replacement solution will be deployed to protect staff computers by IT Services.




Note: IE is the recommended browser for College web applications such as Banner - if you experience problems in other browsers please try IE.

You should also keep Java and Adobe Flash Player up-to-date with these links:


What is phishing?

Phishing (pronounced 'fishing') is a way of obtaining personal information via fraudulent emails and, less commonly, phone contact.

How does it work?

An email is sent to a large number of people in the hope that some of them will be duped into supplying personal information, such as the password for your Royal Holloway CampusConnect login or bank details.

What do the emails look like / what do they ask for?

Phishing attacks will typically encourage victims to enter details on a fake website - which often seems to come from a legitimate organisation.

Look out for phishing emails that contain...

  • casual or informal wording that is not in the normal style of an email from a legitimate company.
  • familiar language or tone, but poor grammar and spelling.
  • a request to verify your account - we will never ask you for your Royal Holloway password, nor will any bank or other legitimate organisation.
  • links suggesting 'There is a secure message waiting for you' - these messages work by putting the emphasis on reading a message - not your actual account. However, the link in the email will still ask for your personal account details.
  • warnings such as 'If you don't respond within 48 hours, your account will be closed' - such messages convey a sense of urgency that can make you respond immediately without thinking. Phishing emails might even claim that your response is required because your account may have been compromised.
  • requests for you to 'Click the link below to gain access to your account' - sophisticated email messages can contain links or forms that you may fill out just as you would do on a legitimate website
  • non-specific greetings such as 'Dear Valued Customer' - phishing emails are usually sent out in bulk and often do not contain your first name or surname.


 Accessibility | Policies | Privacy | Regulations & legalScope of support 

Getting help

Log a call - IT Service Desk:

W: itservicedesk.rhul.ac.uk

E: ITServiceDesk@rhul.ac.uk

T: (01784 41) 4321

Laptop Support and Mobile Device Clinic

Bedford Library 2-01

Clinic Opening Times...


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