Important tech tips for returning to campus


Many of you may soon be returning to campus after working remotely for more than a year! That means you may need to change or refresh your computers, devices, and applications you use to learn, teach, research, and work. Here are some tips and tricks from USC’s Information Technology Services (ITS):

What to Know

  • By USC passphrase standards, you will have had to change your USC password at least once in the past 17 months, whether you were working from home or on campus. If you saved your USC passphrase on computers/devices, you may still need to update it on these devices to enable them to access USC networks or certain on-campus systems.
  • Devices that have not been powered on in over a year present a significant security risk because they may not have the latest security patches.
    • It may take longer and require more steps to update and reinstall software on these devices, so plan time to do this before the start of class or work.
  • Every day, make sure your computers and other technology are properly secured when learning, teaching, or working at home or another location besides campus.
  • For Faculty: ITS will begin automatically creating Zoom meetings for fall 2021 Blackboard courses on Wednesday, August 18. These courses will be available to faculty in Blackboard by Thursday,August 19.
    • If you are a faculty member that would like to opt out of these automatically generated Zoom sessions, please contact your department’s scheduling coordinator by 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday, August 17.
    • If you wish to remove already generated Zoom links from your Blackboard courses, please see the instructions posted on

What to Do

Below are some easy ways you can make sure your return to campus is smooth and secure!

  • Update your USC Wireless settings. We have made significant upgrades to increase the security and performance of the USC Wireless networks. Because of these advances, you may need to use the “forget network” option on your device, then reconnect using your USC credentials. For more information, see our documentation on reconnecting to USC Wireless.
  • Schedule time to update your systems. For more information, see our page on Operating System Security Patches.
    • If you haven’t already, install SentinelOne, USC’s approved endpoint security software, to protect your computers and devices from cybersecurity attacks. See the TrojanSecure web page on SentinelOne for download links and installation instructions.
  • Lock your computer when away from campus. If you are only going to be on campus a few days a week, be sure to either turn your computer off or run a screen saver that requires a password to unlock it to prevent unauthorized access to your computer and its data. See the Clear Desk, Clear Screen page on the TrojanSecure website for more information.
  • Look for additional Tech Tips on ITS social media and digital signage. ITS will post these tips and others on our social media channels (TwitterInstagram, and Slack) and on digital signage around campus to ensure you always have the latest USC tech info at your fingertips.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding these tips or need assistance as you prepare to return to campus, please contact the ITS Service Desk by calling 213-740-5555 or emailing Or go to