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Open book and green pencil

Free Summer Workshops at HS/HSL

The Health Sciences and Human Services Library offers a variety of free workshops to faculty, students, and staff.

Summer topics include:

  • Communicating with patients
  • Copyright rules and guidance for instructors
  • Choosing the right journal for your research
  • Graphic design principles for effective PowerPoint presentations
  • Best practices for managing research data
  • Imaging informatics

See the full schedule and registration information.

Emily GormanBulletin Board, Education, Research, TechnologyJune 20, 20180 comments
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Computer Keyboard-Update

The Importance of General Software Updates and Patches

What do you do when you see those little icons and pop-up messages that appear in the system tray, indicating there is a new software update available for you to download and install?  Most people find such notifications and the process of installing new software updates insignificant and disrupting. The truth is, people ignore such notifications for various reasons, such as, “Do I really need to install this update?” or “My computer is working just fine, I don’t think this update is for me!” or “I don’t have time to reboot my computer,” etc. If you are accustomed to dismissing those update notifications, you need to reconsider that practice. Applying software updates is one of the most important things you can do with your computer. In fact, if you don’t do it, you’re very likely going to get some kind of malware in your system and even get hijacked.

Your computer at UMB should already be on a regular patch cycle that updates the software automatically without you having to do anything, but it is extremely important for you to remember to do this for your personal computer at home.

What Are Software Updates, Anyway?

A software update, also known as a “patch” or a “service pack,” is a piece of software released by software vendors, mainly to address security vulnerabilities in their products. Software updates occasionally contain bug fixes and product enhancement. These updates are installed over the current installation and do not require uninstallation or re-installation of the software in question. In simple words, when you need to update a program, you don’t need to do anything other than let the updater do its thing.

A software update may contain:

  • Security vulnerability fixes: More than 90 percent of software and operating system (OS) updates are to patch security vulnerabilities in programs. A software program with a security hole in it can allow very bad things to happen to the computer. Exploiting security vulnerabilities in programs to deliver malware is a common method employed by cybercriminals.
  • Bug fixes and product enhancements: Although most software updates are developed mainly to address security holes in programs, you might come across software updates with bug fixes and product enhancements to improve program’s performance. A “bug” refers to unintended mistakes created by the programmer that cause the program to give unexpected results and errors.

Why Are Software Updates So Important for Your Computer?

To get the best performance from your computer and, most important, to stay protected against cyberattacks and malicious threats, it is very important that you do not neglect any critical software updates. Using an unpatched/outdated computer is like living in a house with no locks on the doors, inviting unwanted intruders. When you ignore updates on your computer, you are choosing to leave your computer open to infection. Cybercriminals depend on the apathy of users around software updates to keep their malicious endeavor running.

Downloading updates and installing them can sometimes be tedious, but the advantages you get from the updates are worth the time and effort to complete. The good news is you don’t even need to manually download and install most updates for each piece of software. Operating systems and a majority of programs installed on your computer can do the job for you with very little or no intervention. All you need to do is simply grant your consent when asked, by just the click of a button.

How to Manage Software Updates Efficiently

The best way to manage software updates on your computer is to let the software itself do it for you. Operating system and other software, such as your Antivirus program, can be configured to automatically download and install updates for you. However, not all software offers an automatic update feature. Widely used programs like Java and Adobe® Reader® will not update automatically, unfortunately these are typically the most frequently abused programs when they develop security vulnerabilities.

The icon will show in the bar near the clock indicating that the relevant program needs an update and requires you to activate them to start the update procedure. If you see such icons down near the clock, do the update as soon as you can.

It is important to mention that software updates are not limited to computers. Software updates also are available for mobile devices like your smartphone and other devices. The updates for such devices are usually known as “firmware updates.” In the case of smartphones, you also might receive updates for the applications installed on your phone, just the way you receive program updates on your computer. The bottom line is: Do not restrict yourself to just updating your computer. When you see updates for your other devices, make sure you install them as well for better performance and enhanced security.

Fred SmithTechnologyJune 12, 20180 comments
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The President's Message-June

The President’s Message

Check out the June issue of The President’s Message.

It includes:

  • Dr. Perman’s column on last month’s State of the University Address
  • A recap of commencement, UMB’s Neighborhood Spring Festival, Glendening and Ehrlich’s political discussion, and the CURE Scholars’ end-of-year celebration
  • A look ahead to Dr. Perman’s June 19 Q&A
  • Stories on philanthropic gifts to the schools of medicine and nursing
  • Two more employees benefit from the Live Near Your Work Program
  • UMB police start active shooter response training
  • A roundup of student, faculty, and staff achievements
Chris ZangABAE, Bulletin Board, Clinical Care, Collaboration, Community Service, Contests, Education, For B'more, People, Research, Technology, UMB News, University Life, USGAJune 11, 20180 comments
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2018 Summer Institute in Nursing Informatics Conference: Balancing Digital Demands: Access, Use, Security

Register for July’s Summer Institute in Nursing Informatics Conference

This year’s Summer Institute in Nursing Informatics Conference focuses on cybersecurity, including the enhanced use and the availability of technologies in the health care environment.

Don’t miss the opportunity to dialogue with experts in the field from across the United States at the University of Maryland School of Nursing from Wednesday, July 18 to Friday, July 20, with pre-conference events on Tuesday, July 17.

Early bird registration has been extended until Friday, June 8.

Find more information and register. 

Emily ParksEducation, TechnologyMay 31, 20180 comments
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Discover and Share Data with New UMB Data Catalog

The Health Sciences and Human Services Library (HS/HSL) is proud to introduce the UMB Data Catalog, a searchable and browsable collection of records describing datasets generated by UMB researchers.

The UMB Data Catalog promotes research collaboration and data sharing by facilitating the discovery of data sets that may be otherwise hard to find or unavailable from data repositories. Rather than functioning as a repository to store data, the Data Catalog provides information about data sets, including a description of the data set, keywords,  file format and size, access rights, and links to associated articles. With the UMB Data Catalog, researchers can describe their data and make it discoverable, but they are not required to share their data. Instead, the catalog allows users to request data access through an author, an administrator, or a repository. By allowing researchers to identify common research interests and by supporting the sharing and reuse of research data, the UMB Data Catalog has the capacity to promote interdisciplinary collaboration.

The HS/HSL is a member of the Data Catalog Collaboration Project (DCCP) along with New York University (NYU); the University of Pittsburgh; the University of Virginia; the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill; and Duke University. Members run their own installations of the data catalog, developed by NYU, but work together to share and improve system design, content curation, and outreach efforts.

The HS/HSL thanks the researchers who have contributed to the UMB Data Catalog during its initial development phase.

  • Sergei P. Atamas, MD, PhD, School of Medicine
  • Peter Doshi, PhD, School of Pharmacy
  • Corey Shdaimah, LLM, PhD, School of Social Work
  • Jay Unick, MSW, PhD, School of Social Work

Help us build the UMB Data Catalog! If you are interested in submitting a data set, have a suggestion for additional data sets to add, or need more information about the project, please contact us.

Everly BrownCollaboration, Education, Research, TechnologyMay 22, 20180 comments
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Quantum Financials Town Hall Set for June 4

The second Quantum Financials Town Hall will be held Monday, June 4, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. in the Elm Ballroom at the SMC Campus Center. If you would like to learn more about the development of UMB’s new financial system, please plan to attend.

Executive sponsors, project managers, and other project team members will be on hand to share updates about the project and provide attendees a peek at the new financials application. If you want to submit specific questions ahead of time, please send them to the team at

Everyone is welcome to attend.

Robin ReidTechnology, University LifeMay 17, 20180 comments
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The President’s Message

Check out the May issue of The President’s Message.

It includes the following:

  • Dr. Perman’s column on a new home for our Community Engagement Center
  • A recap of IPE Day
  • A look ahead to commencement
  • Dr. Robert Redfield’s appointment as CDC director
  • A Women’s History Month celebration of Dr. Angela Brodie
  • Shock Trauma’s Stop the Bleed program
  • A roundup of student, faculty, and staff achievements
Chris ZangABAE, Bulletin Board, Clinical Care, Collaboration, Community Service, Education, For B'more, People, Research, Technology, UMB News, University Administration, University Life, USGAMay 10, 20180 comments
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Check Out the Latest ‘Connective Issues’ Newsletter

The May 2018 issue of the Connective Issues newsletter from the Health Sciences and Human Services Library (HS/HSL) is now available.

Included in this issue:

  • The GDPR – Why Should We Care?
  • Virtual Reality Headset Available at HS/HSL Innovation Space
  • Fruit Ninja VR Study Break Contest – Game On
  • Discover and Share Data with the New UMB Data Catalog
  • Advice for Grads
  • Movable Monitors Roam the HS/HSL
  • HS/HSL Historical Collection Open House Event
Everly BrownContests, Education, Research, TechnologyMay 10, 20180 comments
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A Reminder After World Password Day – Don’t Reuse Passwords

World Password Day was celebrated on May 3, and it’s a great excuse to recognize and break the habit of reusing passwords. It is estimated that at least 59 percent of all people reuse the same password for all of their accounts, from social networking sites to their most sensitive financial systems.

Security and Compliance at UMB gets reports almost weekly for credentials posted publicly that contain umaryland-related usernames and the passwords associated with those accounts on sites that have no relation to the University. If you are using the same password on your University account and those sites, you are putting University data at risk.

We are in the process of implementing multi-factor authentication using DUO, which will help prevent University credentials from being used without being able to authenticate using a second factor such as your cellphone. Most popular internet sites also offer multi-factor authentication, but some people think it is too cumbersome to use. I certainly advocate that you should use multi-factor authentication wherever possible, from Facebook and Twitter to your personal banking accounts.

If you choose not to protect your personal sites with multi-factor authentication, you must make sure that you are not reusing passwords between accounts. This is one of the main reasons that hackers are successful in breaking into unrelated accounts; credentials posted on the internet after data breaches occurred at some of the internet’s most popular sites — Yahoo, Equifax, MyFitnessPal and Dropbox, just to name a few — were used to gain access to unrelated accounts.

There have been many reports that show why hackers are so successful in gaining access to your accounts:

  • We keep using the same passwords again and again.
  • Most people have 99 things to worry about every day, and passwords are typically not one of them
  • People treat work and personal accounts with the same indifference — 47 percent of users have the same password for their work and personal accounts.
  • Breaches no longer faze us — 53 percent of people have not changed their password even after the announcement of a data breach at a popular site.
  • My account was in that breach? Still not fazed — only 55 percent of people will change their password after finding out that their credentials were part of a data breach.
  • We think our Instagram and Facebook posts are for our friends only — 51 percent of people refuse to believe that their credentials could be compromised by information shared on social media.
  • We love a good, old-fashioned spreadsheet — 42 percent keep passwords in a file on a mobile device in Excel or Word.
  • Most people don’t feel that they are worth a hacker’s time — 38 percent think  their accounts are valuable enough to a hacker.
  • We’re all a little lazy. Unless IT requires us to change our password, most people are happy to continue with the same password — 39 percent say if it’s not required, they won’t do it.

Maintaining unique and strong passwords for every account is a difficult task. However, for a small fee and in some cases for free, there are password managers available that will generate strong passwords for every account you have. Most also have the capability to store personal details for those accounts and will auto populate your username and password into websites for you. It takes the guesswork out of creating unique passwords and provides a roadblock to a hacker if your credentials are stolen at one site to keep them from trying those same credentials anywhere else. It also makes it easy to change passwords in the event that one of your accounts ends up in a data breach.

In addition to using multi-factor authentication wherever possible, I strongly recommend that you investigate a password management program to manage all of your account information.

Fred SmithTechnologyMay 9, 20180 comments
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UMB Continues Participation in Nissan LEAF Rebate Program

The University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) is continuing its participation in a program offering a significant rebate on the purchase of an all-electric, zero-emission vehicle.

Through June 30, 2018, UMB faculty, staff, students, and alumni can receive a $3,000 rebate on the manufacturer’s suggested retail price of a 2018 Nissan LEAF. The benefit cannot be combined with any other Nissan special incentives.

To receive the incentive, bring a copy of both pages of the flyer linked here and proof of your University affiliation to a participating local Nissan dealership. Read the flyer to learn about the key features of the 2018 Nissan LEAF and visit Nissan’s website to learn more about the car or to find a dealer near you.

UMB has 16 120-volt or 240-volt elective vehicle charging stations (serving 32 cars) spread throughout our parking garages. The Baltimore region as a whole provides more than 200 charge station locations, and as electric vehicle popularity increases, the number of charging stations is expected to increase as well.

If you have questions about the program or charging electric vehicles on campus, please email Karen Park or call her at 410-706-2998.

Karen ParkBulletin Board, Technology, UMB News, University LifeMay 8, 20180 comments
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Fruit Ninja VR Study Break Contest – Game On

Take a break from reality and slice up some virtual fruit salad!

The Health Sciences and Human Services Library’s (HS/HSL) Innovation Space is hosting a Fruit Ninja VR study break from May 7-16.

The top score gets a $50 Amazon gift card; second and third place earn $25 gift cards. To enter, take a screenshot of your high score and post it on social media (Twitter/Facebook) with #HSHSLSTUDYBREAK.

Drop by to get your game on between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. each day.

Brian ZelipContests, People, TechnologyMay 7, 20180 comments
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Quantum Financials Passes Another Milestone

Quantum Financials, which will become UMB’s new financial and reporting system, passed another milestone last week: the completion of the second of four conference room pilots, or CRPs. CRPs are testing cycles used to confirm that the decisions made so far will work for the University when the new system goes live.

The purpose of the second testing cycle was to give Functional Leads hands-on experience with guiding system settings for their areas and in preparing for and executing UMB’s first round of testing within specific areas of the application, including purchasing and finance. The testing cycle was a success. The team identified processes that worked successfully and some that need additional refinements, and it even uncovered a few bugs that are being researched and addressed by the software vendor.

Functional Leads Susan McKechnie (finance), Joe Evans (procurement), and Kevin Cooke (grants) led preparation and testing within their respective areas. In fact, the Quantum Change Champions group got a sneak peek of the upgraded system at the group’s April 19 meeting. Evans led the group of 25 through creating and approving a requisition in Quantum, showcasing new features including purchasing from a catalog and quick ways to view the status of recent requisitions.

First System Upgrade/Evaluation Underway

As CRP2 activities ended, the project team immediately shifted focus to upgrading UMB’s environments to the most current release of the software — the version we will use when Quantum goes live. Functional and technical team members are now evaluating new features, functionality, and how UMB’s settings work with the new release.

Conversions and Integration Testing

The technical teams have been very busy as well. Team members created programs to convert data from eUMB Financials to Quantum. Preparation for CRP2 included testing and refining 15 conversion programs needed to populate the Quantum environments with UMB data such as suppliers, department IDs, and some sample transactional and historic data. CRP2 also included testing 11 of the 46 integrations that Quantum will have to make with other systems such as iLabs, BIORESCO, eUMB HRMS, and the state of Maryland’s R*STARS system. Each conversion and integration requires its own program as well as testing, data validation, and refinement cycles.

What’s Next?

As the team finishes evaluating the features and functionality delivered in the upgraded version of Oracle Cloud Financials, members will begin running another testing cycle — this time in the upgraded release. This cycle will include more converted data, integrations, and solutions than were in the previous cycle. The team will retest transactions and processes run through during CRP2 for any changes in results.

Finally, watch this space for information on the second town hall meeting to be held in early summer. That meeting will be your first chance to get a sneak peek at what’s coming in Quantum Financials!

Robin ReidTechnology, UMB NewsApril 20, 20181 comment
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Register for First UMB Teaching with Technology Day

At the first UMB Teaching with Technology Day on May 24, you can join colleagues for an event focused on effective ways technology can be used in higher education. Keynote speaker M.J. Bishop, EdD, director of the University System of Maryland William E. Kirwan Center for Academic Innovation, will kick off the event. A panel discussion, lunchtime table talks, and a “Technology Test Kitchen” will round out the day.

Here are the event details:

  • Date: Thursday, May 24
  • Time: 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Where: University of Maryland School of Nursing, 655 W. Lombard St., Baltimore, MD 21201
  • Registration and more information: Visit this link and check back often, because new information is being added daily.
Everly BrownEducation, People, TechnologyApril 18, 20180 comments
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Technical Support Scams: What They Are and How to Avoid Them

What are Technical Support Scams?

In a technical support scam, a scam artist will try to contact you by phone or initiate contact via a website, often through a pop-up window in your web browser. If you are browsing an unfamiliar website and receive a pop-up claiming that your computer is infected, you should immediately disconnect from that site.

If you receive a call, the scammer typically will claim to be a representative from Microsoft or Apple technical support and claim that they have noticed your computer appears to be infected and is causing an issue that has come to their attention. They will highlight common concerns regarding your computer, such as viruses or malware. They will emphasize the danger in not addressing these issues and offer to “fix” these manufactured issues by connecting to your system.

What is the Possible Impact of Such Scams?

The goal of the scammer is to gain remote access to your computer, and once they have achieved that via legitimate remote desktop software, such as LogMeIn, they will do one or more of the following:

  • Trick you into installing malicious software that could capture sensitive information, such as your online banking account name and password (they also might then charge you to remove this software).
  • Persuade you to download software that will allow them to take control of your computer remotely and adjust settings to leave your computer vulnerable.
  • Request credit card information so they can bill you for phone services.
  • Direct you to fraudulent websites and ask you to enter credit card and other personal or financial information there.

Many of these scammers have shell companies or fake entities with full websites and toll-free telephone numbers that you can call.

How Can I Protect Myself from Technical Support Scams?

Legitimate technical support services will never contact you and ask for credit card or other financial information, or offer services in exchange for subscriptions and fees.

Per Microsoft’s website, if someone contacts you claiming to be Microsoft:

  • Do not purchase any software or services.
  • Ask if there is a fee or subscription associated with the “service” — if there is, hang up.
  • Never give control of your computer to a third party unless you can confirm that it is a legitimate representative of a computer support team with whom you are already a customer or you have initiated the trouble call.
  • Take down the person’s information and immediately report it to your local authorities.
  • Never provide your credit card or financial information to someone claiming to be from Microsoft or other technical support.

You can review the following resources to further protect  yourself against technical support scams:


Fred SmithEducation, TechnologyApril 17, 20180 comments
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May 1 is Go-Live Date for Updated Enterprise System Kuali Research

Kuali Research is the updated version of UMB’s current enterprise system – Kuali Coeus – for electronic research administration. Among other new features and enhancements, Kuali Research guides the user through the proposal entry process and includes additional validations for National Institutes of Health proposals to reduce submission errors.

To facilitate migration to the new system, neither Kuali Coeus nor Kuali Research will be available from April 23 until the go-live date of May 1.

During this transition, Sponsored Programs Administration (SPA) staff will be available to answer questions and assist with proposal submission. Click here for SPA staff assignments.

Training for Kuali Research is available for existing users, and additional training and guidance will be made available after May 1. Contact your SPA team for more information.

Janet SimonsResearch, TechnologyApril 13, 20180 comments
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