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Library and IT Self Help

Self help articles for Library and IT support

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Being safe online is more than just making sure you have password protection. It includes what you post online, what information you share and who with, what links you click on and many other issues. 

Keeping yourself safe online is important both for your physical protection, and to keep your University data private and safe. 

Phishing Scams


A phishing scam is an attempt to trick you into giving up your personal information by pretending to be someone you know. This is very often done via emails where you are asked to click into links and input personal information. 

It can also be done over phone, or text messages.

For any email you think may be suspicious please report it either by clicking 'report email' in the emails settings, or forwarding the email to Do not forward suspicious emails to any other email address. 

Test yourself here to see if you can spot phishing scams

There is more information from the University Anatomy of a Phishing Email page


It's good practice to create strong passwords, at least 10 or 12 characters long, including uppercase, lowercase, numbers and symbols. If possible use a password generator that your can find freely online to create a strong password.

  • Never use any part of your or a relatives first or last name in the password
  • Do not use whole words such as 'plymouth' or 'password' 
  • Do not use your, or anyone else's date of birth
  • Try not to use the same password across multiple accounts e.g. University login, banking details, social media accounts

Don't ever give your password to another person, this includes friends, family, any staff members or other students working in groups with you. This is for the protection of your own personal data and in compliance with the University's Information Security policy. You will never be asked to provide your password and if you are this is likely a phishing scam and needs to be ignored and reported (see section below)

Follow the instructions on this page to change your password at any time. You can also call us on 01752 588588 (option 3) during our opening hours 

Report a data breach

A data breach is any situation where you feel that yours or someone elses data has been passed onto someone that did not have authorisation to have that information. This could be putting your details into a suspicious website, accidentally copying someone into sensitive emails that they were not supposed to see or losing a University-owned laptop that was not password protected.

It's always better to report a breach even if you are unsure if it counts as a data breach.

You can report any data breach at the University report a breach page, or by calling staff IT at 01752 588588 (option 1) - both staff and students can call the staff IT number to report a breach.