UNH CIS Signals

CIS Reminder Regarding Free Products

by CIS Staff

February, 2009

computer security alerts

CIS is committed to informing and educating the UNH community about new technologies. CIS would like to caution and remind you to review all free Web offers that sound too good to true.

Please use the following guidelines before downloading or accessing free services on the Web:

  • Check the fine print. Read your license agreements and any legal pages offered by the company/creator of the product. There are often catches to “free” services/software.
  • Think about requests from the company/creator of the product, such as mandatory donations or requests for personal information in exchange for the use of their service or software.
  • Make sure you understand any binding terms and agreements before you agree.
  • Research the software/service before you use it. You should be aware of the legal and technological ramifications of using a new technology.
  • Know what you’re paying for. It is not only free items that can be hazardous. For example, purchasing file sharing software may not entitle you to the content you download, you are only paying to use the service.

With all of that said, there are legitimate services and software available to promote use of technology and access to information. These are made possible by many means, including the work of volunteers, optional donations, open source code, and by the support of advertisements.

As with all unsupported CIS products, use all free web-based services with caution.