IT and Library Services

IT and Library Services Terminology

= Information Security Terminology



Abstract: A summary or brief description of the content of another longer work. 

AMP (Application Management Process): The process used by the university to manage the installation, upgrading and depreciation of software across the IT estate.  Read more about AMP...

Anti-spyware: Anti-spyware software is a type of program designed to prevent and detect unwanted spyware program installations and to remove those programs if installed.  Read more about Anti-spyware...

Anti-virus: Antivirus software is a program or set of programs that are designed to prevent, search for, detect, and remove software viruses, and other malicious software; Read more about Anti-virus...

API (Application Programming Interface): A set of rules that allow the creation of applications, which access the data of an operating system, applications or service

App (Application): A piece of software developed to be installed on mobile devices

Authentication: A security process that typically employs usernames and passwords to validate the identity of users before allowing them access to secure systems.

ASL: Academic Services Librarian

AV / Audio-Visual:


Bandwidth: describes the maximum data transfer rate of a network or Internet connection - for example, a gigabit Ethernet connection has a bandwidth of 1,000 Mbps, (125 megabytes per second).

Boolean operator: A word (such as AND, OR, or NOT) that commands a computer to combine search terms. Used to narrow (AND, NOT) or broaden (OR) searches.


Cloud: The cloud refers to software and services that run on the Internet, instead of locally on your computer.

CMS / Content Management System:  In its simplest terms, Content Management Systems are designed to help users create and manage their websites. A CMS helps web editors manage the many different resources, content types and various data that make up modern web sites.

CRM / Customer Relationship Manager:  Customer relationship management (CRM) is a technology for managing all your company's relationships and interactions with customers and potential customers.


Data Breach: A data breach is an incident in which sensitive, protected and confidential data has been viewed, used or stolen by someone who isn't authorised to do so.

Data Classification: The process of organising data into categories for its most effective and efficient use. 

DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service): The intention of harming and stopping a computer network, by flooding it with data sent from many individual computers.

Document delivery: A service that retrieves or photocopies information sources for library users.

Downtime: The time during which a computer or server is out of action or unavailable for use - often for maintenance purposes.

DPA - Data Protection Act: controls how personal information can be used.


Encryption:  Data encryption translates data into another form, or code, so that only people with access to a secret key (formally called a decryption key) or password can read it. 

Email: Short for electronic mail, email (or e-mail) is defined as the transmission of messages over communications networks.


Firewall: A network security system that uses rules to control incoming and outgoing network traffic, acting as a barrier between a trusted network and an untrusted network.

FTP / File Transfer Protocol:FTP is a standard network protocol used for the transfer of computer files between a client and server on a computer network.


GDPR: General Data Protection Regulation

GGC: Greenwich Gateway Card (your university ID card)


Hack: To break into computers and computer networks.


ICO: The Information Commissioner's Office.  The independent regulatory office in charge of upholding information rights in the interest of the public.

Information and Library Services  / IT and Library Services: The directorate within the University with oversight of all central IT and Library systems, from student It provision to administrative systems used to run the University.

InfoSec: Information Security.

Infrastructure: The IT infrastructure refers to everything; the network, the servers etc.

IT Security: A term used to describe all the security on  an IT infrastructure to protect you from viruses, cyberattacks, ransomware, data leaks and more.

ITSM: The web based ILS IT Service Desk call logging and reporting platform. Powered by Sunrise Sostenuto.



Keylogger: a program that records the keystrokes on a computer.


LibCal: Our Library Workshop and events calendar

LibGuides: The website for our Library Subject Guides, written by our librarians and Academic Skills tutors.


MAC Address: A MAC address is a hardware identification number that uniquely identifies each device on a network.

Malware: Malware, or malicious software, is any program or file that is harmful to a computer user. Types of malware can include computer viruses, worms, Trojan horses and spyware.

MFD: Multi-Functional Device (all-in one device used for printing, scanning, photocopying).

Moodle: The university Virtual Learning Environment.


Network: A network consists of multiple devices that communicate with one another.



Passcode: A string of characters used as a password, especially to gain access to a computer or smartphone.

Password: A string of characters that allows access to a computer system or service.

Phishing: Phishing is the act of sending an email to a user falsely claiming to be someone else in an attempt to scam the user into surrendering private information that will be used for identity theft.

Plagiarism: Passing off someone else's work, ideas or words as your own.

Portal: A website or web page providing access or links to other sites.


QR code: A machine-readable code consisting of an array of black and white squares, typically used for storing URLs or other information for reading by the camera on a smartphone.


Remote Desktop: A means of connecting to a computer so that you are presented with the interface of the remote machine as if you were sat at it.


Single sign-on (SSO):  Single Sign-On / SSO allows users to sign on in one website or system and automatically be signed on in another website or system. For example, by logging in to the University Portal, you can access multiple systems without having to re-enter your credentials

SSH / Secure Shell: Secure Shell is a program to log into another computer over a network, to execute commands in a remote machine, and to move files from one machine to another. It provides strong authentication and secure communications over insecure channels.

Social Engineering:  The use of deception to manipulate individuals into revealing confidential or personal information that may be used for fraudulent purposes.

Spam: The term spam can be used to describe any unwanted email from a company or website.

Spear Phishing: The fraudulent practice of sending emails ostensibly from a known or trusted sender in order to trick targeted individuals into revealing confidential information.

Spyware: Software that is installed in a computer without the user's knowledge which transmits information about the user's computer activities over the Internet.


Targeted attack: A targeted attack is any malicious attack that is targeted to a specific individual, company, system or software.

Trojan horse: A Trojan horse is a seemingly benign program that when activated, causes harm to a computer system.

Two-Factor Authentication: Two-factor authentication is a security mechanism that requires two types of credentials for authentication and is designed to provide an additional layer of validation, minimising security breaches.


UPS: Uninterruptible Power Supply - a type of power supply that uses battery backup to maintain power during unexpected power outages.


Virtual Desktop: See Remote Desktop.

Virtual Learning Environment: An online system designed to support teaching and learning. Our Virtual Learning Environment is Moodle.

Virus: A computer virus is a malicious program or piece of code that is loaded onto your computer without your knowledge and runs against your wishes.

VoIP: Voice Over Internet Protocol -  a telephone connection over the Internet.

VPN: Virtual Private Network.


Web Filter: A Web filter is a technology that directs users away from certain URLs or websites by effectively preventing their browsers from loading certain pages from those sites.


XML: Extensible Markup Language (XML) is a universal format, maintained by the W3C, used for representation and transfer of structured data on the web or between different applications.



ZIP file: A ZIP file is a file in the ZIP format which implements lossless compression in order to reduce the volume of saved files.