30 January 2017

Solis password: valid until…

Many Solis passwords of the university turn out to be older than three years; in a few cases even older than ten years. ‘Passwords that are older than three years are often targeted by cybercriminals,’ says security officer René Ritzen. ‘Back when you set your password it may have been strong enough, but today’s cybercriminals have better technology with which they can find out your password even faster.’

In order to ensure that everyone regularly updates their password, the university will introduce an expiration date for Solis passwords starting on 1 February.

Every six months

Going forward, you will need to set a new password for your Solis ID every six months. To assist you, you will receive a notification when your password is one month short of expiring. This will be followed up by several more notifications sent to your UU email address, but we recommend that you do not wait until the last moment. If you wait too long, you run the risk that your password will expire, preventing you from logging in to the university systems.

Tip

Reserve 15 minutes in your diary (even better: schedule a half-yearly appointment) to change your password. Before changing your password, carefully review the instruction and the tips for choosing a strong password .

You can always change your password

In order to prevent system overload, passwords older than six months will not all expire at the same time. Consequently, you may only receive the first reminder in a few months from now. Of course, you do not need to wait this long in order to change your password: you can always do so, and even with greater frequency if you wish.

Security

René Ritzen, university security officer, explains why frequently changing one’s password is necessary to secure university data: ‘We have recently seen an increase in the misuse of Solis IDs and passwords. They may have been stolen in many different ways, for example through phishing, data breaches or poor-quality passwords. If this happens and the password never changes, the door to university systems and data is open to cybercriminals. As there is a brisk trade in passwords, a compromised password can end up in many different hands.’

Also see the information pages about working safely and tips for a strong password.

If you have any questions about changing your password, contact the IT Service Desk on 030 253 4500.