EU nationals and Student Finance in Northern Ireland
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Apply for a Postgraduate Tuition Fee Loan now!
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Applications for 2017/18 are now open - it’s time for full-time undergraduate students to apply
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Tuition Fee Loans for Part-time Undergraduate (and Distance Learning) Students 2017/18
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Tuition Fee Loans for Postgraduate students 2017/18
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Postgraduate Tuition Fee Loans in Northern Ireland
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Security Information


Staying Safe Online

Protecting you and your information is paramount to Student Finance NI. We have partnered with ‘Get Safe Online’ to promote online safety and security.

www.getsafeonline.org has useful information, and helpful advice about online safety.

We would like to tell you about:

Top tips

Here are our top tips to help you stay safe online:

  • Student Finance ni will never ask you to confirm your bank details or login information by email. Be suspicious of any urgent requests for personal or financial information.
  • ‘Dear Student’ – phishing emails are sent out in bulk by criminals to gain access to your personal details. These are unlikely to contain your first or last name, they often say ‘Dear Student’.
  • Check the quality of the email or text you receive – misspelling, poor punctuation and bad grammar are tell-tale signs of a phishing communication.

Cookies

When we deliver services on the internet this sometimes involves placing small amounts of information on your computer, these include small files known as cookies.

Cookies aren’t used to identify you personally but they can remember activities and preferences chosen by you and your browser. They’re here to make the site work better for you, and to help us understand how people use the website.

To learn more about the cookies we use please read the information below.

Cookies for measuring website usage

We use Google Analytics to collect information about how people use this site. We do this to make sure it’s meeting its users’ needs and to understand how we could do it better.

Google Analytics stores information about what pages you visit, how long you are on the site, how you got here and what you click on. We do not collect or store your personal information (e.g. your name or address) so this information cannot be used to identify who you are. We do not allow Google to use or share our analytics data.

Name Description Expiration
_utma This cookie keeps track of the number of times a visitor has been to the site, when their first visit was, and when their last visit occurred. 2 years
_utmb This cookie takes a timestamp of the exact moment in time when a visitor enters a site 30 minutes
_utmc This cookie takes a timestamp of the exact moment in time when a visitor leaves a site. The B and C cookies work together to calculate how long a visit takes. End of session (this expires when you close your browser window)
_utmz This cookie keeps track of where the visitor came from, what search engine they used, what link they clicked on, what keywords were used, and where they were in the world when they accessed the website. 6 months
_atuvc This cookie is used to allow customers to recommend the site via various social media tools. 2 years

Cookies for managing your current visit

Name Description Expiration
JSESSIONID This cookie is used to keep track of session information in a single visit and is also used to route traffic to the appropriate application server End of session (this expires when you close your browser window)
orasso This cookie is used to track the users identity and to mark them as having been authenticated in this session End of session (this expires when you close your browser window)
Oracle-ECID This cookie is used to correlate log file entries across the various servers that fulfil page requests End of session (this expires when you close your browser window)
ORACLE_SMP_CHRONOS_GL This cookie is used to track end user page load times End of session (this expires when you close your browser window)
ORACLE_SMP_CHRONOS_LT This cookie is used to track end user page load times End of session (this expires when you close your browser window)
ORACLE_SMP_CHRONOS_ST This cookie is used to track end user page load times End of session (this expires when you close your browser window)
last_request This cookie is used to track end user page load times End of session (this expires when you close your browser window)
style This cookie is used to track the preferred text size that the user has selected where they have indicated that they wish to view the site with larger font. End of session (this expires when you close your browser window)
Portal This cookie is used to keep track of session information within the public website rather than the transactions in a single visit End of session (this expires when you close your browser window)

Managing cookies

There's information on how to manage and remove cookies at AboutCookies.org.

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Protecting your identity

Passwords and Secret Answers

When you register on Student Finance NI we provide you with security details; a user name (your Customer Reference Number), a password and a secret answer. When you first log in you will need to change your password.

You can change your password and secret answer at any time by using our online service.

Always, choose a password and secret answer that you will remember, but will not be easily guessed by anyone else.

Phishing

We will never email you asking for login or user details. If you receive an email that claims to be from us and asks you to visit our site and confirm your details, forward it on to phishing@slc.co.uk and then delete it. This email will direct you to a fake website so please do not follow the link.

This kind of fraudulent email is called ‘phishing’, by letting us know you have received one we can work to help protect you and others who may be affected.

If you think that someone might have guessed or found your login details, or you have disclosed them after a phishing email, you can use our online password reset service to change your details.

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Protecting your computer

Viruses, spyware and malware

Any computer connected to the internet may be vulnerable to viruses, malware or spyware.

Viruses come in many forms; attached to emails, contained in innocent looking programs or spread by websites. Viruses try to either damage your computer by removing important files or altering data, or to collect information about you and send it on to an unauthorised third party. Viruses will try to spread themselves by attempting to send themselves to your email contacts or other users of file-sharing sites.

Firewalls

A firewall is an essential barrier between your computer and the internet, preventing anyone connecting to your computer without your permission.

Most current computer operating systems, such as Mac OS X, Windows XP or Vista, have inbuilt firewalls. There are firewall products that can be downloaded from the internet. Make sure that your computer’s firewall is active.

Anti-Virus Scanners

A good anti-virus scanner will check incoming emails and files you open.

New viruses are discovered daily by anti-virus makers so it is important that you update the ‘definition files’ (the list of viruses the scanner knows about) every 2 or 3 days.

Operating systems

Regularly check that your computer’s operating system and the running software on it is up to date.

Most operating systems have an update facility which will automatically update their software on your computer.

For other software packages or programs you use, visit the manufacturer’s website for available updates.

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Using our service safely

The Student Finance NI website is designed to ensure that when you access your account or send us information it is secure.

When you log in and access your online account, you are protected by a secure encrypted session. You will see the web address starting “https” rather than just “http” and a small padlock icon in the status bar at the bottom of your browser window.

Always log out of our site when you have finished using it, and close the browser window. This ensures that your user session is closed properly.

We recommend that when you visit Student Finance NI that you type the URL address into your browser. This ensures you are going to the correct site and not a spoof or fraudulent site.

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