Why are we doing this (again)?
- Having PII (personally identifiable information) on your computer is taken very seriously by the University. Penn State's central security office has continued to explore new scanning technologies that have evolved since our first scan. In an effort to remediate and prove that we do not have PII on our systems, the central security office at Penn State has purchased Identity Finder. Identity Finder has proven to be a user friendly and more effective at finding legitimate PII. ITS Training Services has created a video that introduces users to the function of the new software.
Am I allowed to keep my own personal information or my family’s information on my machine?
- No, the Privacy Office at the University has stated that you are not permitted to have yours or your family's personally identifiable information on your computer system (this includes such things as tax documents with SSNs). The Privacy Office has already made notifications to family members when personally identifiable information was compromised.
What happens if I find Social Security Numbers, Credit Card Numbers, or Drivers License numbers on my machine?
Is there a Mac version of Identity Finder?
- Yes. If you do not have Identity Finder installed on your Mac, please feel free to call the SAIT Service Desk at 814-865-7210 for assistance.
How do I tell if a file contains PII?
- Look at the file name. If it looks familiar, and is saved in a folder you frequently use, such as "My Documents" or on your Home (H:) drive, it probably warrants further attention. If it looks unfamiliar, has strange characters, or is saved in folders like "Application Data" or other folders you do not use, it is most likely a false positive. However, you should always check the Preview before making a final decision.
- Check the Preview. When you click on a file name, or match, Identity Finder brings up a file preview in the Preview panel on the right side of the window, with the suspected PII highlighted. You should be able to see in the preview if the number is associated with a Name or any other personal information, or if it is a false positive.
- Some common examples of false positives include ISBN numbers, FedEx account numbers or zip codes.
- Open the File. If you are still unsure whether the file contains PII, you can double click the file name to open the file and view it in its entirety.
- Call the SAIT Service Desk. If you are still unsure about a specific file, feel free to call the Service Desk at 814-865-7210 and we will assist you in any way we can.