Postini Email Archiving and Antispam Services
Customer Help and Documentation
NC State's Postini services are actually two separate services:
Postini Message Security (antispam and antivirus services)
Postini Implementation Project Overview
This site hosts project and background information. End-users will want to refer to the customer links above.
This project will enhance the University's ability to comply with records retention and legal discovery requirements related to electronic mail, while eliminating duplicate antispam and antivirus filtering solutions.
With an increased focus on email archiving and retention as compliance issues, an OIT team was established to recommend a solution for enterprise email systems. This initiative also presented the opportunity to consolidate two separate enterprise antispam/antivirus filtering solutions to reduce costs and complexity. The team recommended contracting with Google for its hosted Postini services, which provides spam-filtering and user-accessible email archives to meet compliance and storage management needs. This recommendation was endorsed by the Messaging Technical Oversight and Messaging Steering Committees in January, 2010 and was subsequently accepted by Vice Chancellor for Information Technology Marc Hoit. This project will implement Google's Postini antispam/antivirus and archiving/discovery services for all University faculty and staff, along with supporting business processes/systems.
Scope & Objectives
- Consolidate antispam/antivirus email solutions while providing robust protection against email-based computer security threats with minimal impact on legitimate mail.
- Beginning on a specific date, capture all OIT-managed email traffic subject to records retention in Google's Postini Archive service to meet compliance objectives for retention/discovery and to provide enterprise email customers with a standard, secure, high-capacity email archive.
- Establish robust and efficient support and business processes to transition and maintain services.
- Identify and recommend methods and associated costs to consolidate historical email from OIT mail servers and local archives into Google's Postini Archive service. Note: this does not include executing such plans.
This project will support the OIT operational goals of Proactive Customer Service and Solutions, Collaborative Engagement, and Reliable Systems and Security.
- Start date: February 1, 2010.
- Expected End Date: June 1, 2010
The project impacts the entire University userbase given the almost universal dependency on email to support core business functions. Implementation work crosses 5 OIT units, represented on the project's OIT/internal implementation team, and successful rollout/support requires coordinated effort from college/departmental IT staff, represented on the project's customer advisory team.
An possible value-add outcome of this service is the opportunity improve email storage management by establishing a standard, tiered-storage, email archiving solution.
The scope, purpose and objectives stated in this charter are governed, authorized and supported by the project sponsors, comprised of OIT directors and the Vice Chancellor for Information Technology.
Major Constraints, Risks and Assumptions
Value Add and Leverage
The Postini Archiving service presents an opportunity to address email archiving needs, including historical archives, to support user/departmental business needs in addition to institutional compliance needs.
A proposed, 10-year [7-year as of September 1, 2012] email retention policy is assumed to meet compliance objectives. Prudent management of compliance and reputational risk at the institutional level suggests that a standard, automated email archiving solution be extended/architected to maximize the capture of University email from all sources and systems to the extent practical. Historical email (i.e., before effective date of automated capture into the Postini Archive) imported into the Postini Archive will not necessarily comprise all University email received by the individual due to the possibility of permanent deletion or loss of messages prior to or during the import process. (Note: best practice would establish a record of such known compliance limitations, e.g., a standard/special message being injected into the archive.)
The Google Posinti contract provides for a 10-year [7-year as of September 1, 2012] retention period with unlimited storage, for an annual subscription fee per unique Postini Archive mailbox. Multiple email addresses may be served by one Postini archive mailbox. The contract does not provide for any custom integration services.
Cost estimates assume that the project will be completed before the June 30, 2010, the license expiration date for antispam/antivirus software, avoiding the cost of a license renewal. Given the current fiscal climate, the possibility of a spending freeze is not remote and would impact the ability to cover unplanned costs into the 4th quarter of FY2009-2010 as project work peaks.
The project requires considerable development work to integrate the vendor's services with and across account/identity management systems, multiple directory services, two separate OIT-run email systems and multiple email-related databases with varying data sources and quality controls. It is likely that this work will encounter new technical challenges requiring innovative workarounds, significant data collection/cleanup and creation/modification of standard business processes to maintain new/repurposed databases and integration components. Most local email archives are out of OIT's control and only marginally accessible to departmental IT staff, with many readily accessible only to end users. The Postini Archive service does not include import tools; instead, customers are typically referred to 3rd party vendors.
Project staff typically have other business- and time-critical responsibilities, though integration work will dovetail in some areas with the upcoming rollout of Google Apps for Education (including Gmail) services for students.
Project manager, service owner and project team members are on the Teams and Roles page.