OIT News – July 2010

OIT News

Monthly news briefs, information and announcements
Office of Information Technology, NC State University
Issue 33, July 2010

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01: E-mail archiving and antispam and antivirus changes coming in August
02: University develops HEOA Compliance Plan to combat illegal file sharing
03: Gone Google!

04: Unity ID renaming service suspended
05: Academic Novell Windows environment decommissioning planned for Dec. 31
06: SAR training scheduled for Aug. 10

07: Encrypt your iPhone backups

01: E-mail archiving and antispam and antivirus changes coming in August
During the first week in August, OIT will implement Google Postini e-mail archiving and antispam and antivirus services for designated users (employees) of its centrally-supported e-mail systems – Unity/Webmail and WolfWise/GroupWise.

As OIT creates Postini accounts prior to the service cutover, users will receive an e-mail informing them that their accounts have been created and that they will need to sync their Unity password in order to gain access to and manage the new Postini services. To learn more about how Postini services work, visit the E-mail Archiving and Retention Services Web site and the E-mail Security Web site.

02: University develops HEOA Compliance Plan to combat illegal file sharing
In compliance with the Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA) of 2008, NC State has developed a plan to combat unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials by users of its network. This plan was effective July 1, 2010. 

Illegal file sharing of copyrighted material via peer-to-peer (P2P) applications or other means is a serious offense and can lead to university disciplinary actions as well as criminal and civil penalties. In most cases, it is illegal to upload or download copyrighted material without the owner’s express permission, and the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) and others are actively tracking and seeking damages against these copyright infringements.

NC State seeks to deter the use of peer-to-peer file transfers for illegal purposes up to and including the implementation of technology-deterrent applications that could monitor traffic content. The university will offer alternatives to illegal downloading and will distribute to the campus community an annual disclosure describing copyright law and campus policies related to copyright violation. The university plans to review its plan annually. For further information, please visit the NC State P2P File Sharing Web site, where the HEOA Compliance Plan, P2P definitions, documentation and a NC State FAQ on file sharing can be found.

03: Gone Google! 
When NC State students return to campus this fall, they will have a new university student e-mail service and an array of collaborative tools, all bundled in Google Apps @ NC State. The Office of Information Technology completed its initial migration of student e-mail accounts from Unity/Webmail to Google Apps @ NC State on July 16.

More than 26,000 student accounts were included in this migration, which involved only those individuals expected to be students in the fall and did not include permanent employees who were also students or those with WolfWise accounts. Since the Google Apps beta service launched in early April, more than 8,000 students had already signed up for an account and had their e-mail migrated. There are an additional 2,600 student accounts that will be migrated beginning July 21. Those accounts belong to summer school students and new students who were not registered for the fall semester at the time of the initial Google Apps migration. Additional Google Apps accounts will be created as students become eligible.

As part of the new Google Apps services, students receive more than 7GB of storage space for their NCSU e-mail accounts, all from their university @ncsu.edu e-mail address. In addition to Gmail, students receive Google Calendar, Google Docs, Google Sites, Google Talk and Google Wave. Many of these tools are also accessible via various mobile devices. Students who are experiencing problems with the Google Apps @ NC State migration should direct their questions to the NC State Help Desk at 515-HELP (4357) or help@ncsu.edu. They can also visit the Google Apps @ NC State Web site for more information.

The university chose to outsource student e-mail services to improve technology services for students and reduce costs. For more information about NC State’s implementation of Google Apps Education Edition, visit the Google Apps @ NC State Web site.

04: Unity ID renaming service suspended
Effective immediately, OIT is suspending the renaming of Unity IDs (also called login IDs and userids) for individuals whose legal name has changed due to marriage, divorce or for some other reason.

Renames will now only be accommodated under special circumstances and will require dean or vice chancellor approval. OIT will establish an exception approval process shortly, with guidelines to accommodate people with existing Unity IDs who believe their Unity IDs must be changed due to some extreme circumstance.

Unity IDs are used not only in the university’s centrally-supported information systems and Web-based services, but also in many departmental systems. Renaming the Unity ID creates confusion and possible loss of data about the user throughout these systems. The university will also be moving away from name-based Unity IDs in the future as part of the process to enhance online identity and access management systems. For help, contact the NC State Help Desk at 515-HELP (4357) or help@ncsu.edu.

05: Academic Novell Windows environment decommissioning planned for Dec. 31
If you are a user of the Academic Novell Windows Environment, your account will no longer work, effective Dec. 31, 2010. This change does not affect users of the Administrative Desktop Environment supported by OIT Client Services.  In order to reduce costs, OIT is migrating away from Novell-based services and adopting Microsoft Active Directory services in the WolfTech domain to deliver its Academic Desktop Environment.

To see if you are affected by this change, first look in your “Novell-delivered Applications” window, which may already be opened or minimized on your desktop. If it isn’t opened, you can launch it by clicking on the “Application Window” icon on your desktop. If the window is not already open and you don’t have an icon for it, then you are not affected by this change. In the file navigation pane on the left, if you have a “Unity Applications” folder in the list, then this notice applies to you, and you should contact your IT support person to ensure your migration to the WolfTech domain is planned. If you don’t have an IT support person, contact the NC State Help Desk at 515-HELP (4357) or help@ncsu.edu. The technical details and timeline associated with the Academic Novell Windows Environment Decommissioning project are available on SysNews.

06: SAR training scheduled for Aug. 10
Security Access Request (SAR) training for campus requestors and approvers of access to secured university data will be held from 9:30 a.m. to noon on Tuesday, Aug. 10 in the ITTC Lab 2 of D.H. Hill Library. Please visit Classmate to view available classes and to sign up for training.

07: Encrypt your iPhone backups
If you have ever lost your Apple iPhone or any other mobile device, then you know that replacing the device itself is an easy task, but recovering your contacts, images, notes, messages and other personal information can be time-consuming and difficult. The iPhone has a backup utility, however, that lets you easily backup important files from your iPhone to your PC or Macintosh.

According to OIT Security and Compliance, it’s important to safeguard your iPhone backups to prevent hackers from obtaining your personal data (e-mail addresses, phone numbers, call and text message logs, and even your stored passwords) as well as phone and subscriber identity information that they can use to hijack your iPhone account.

To encrypt your backup, connect your iPhone to your computer, go to the Summary Tab and under the Options section, check the option “Encrypt iPhone backup” with an option to change the password. This will provide strong encryption of almost all of your data from the iPhone (except the information about your phone and SIM card) to the PC or Macintosh. All you need to do is to remember to check the box and keep your password somewhere safe!

And since your phone is the device most likely to get lost or compromised, you should also password protect access to it, both on startup and after a period of inactivity, and encrypt the data on it too, if possible. Password protecting your iPhone will prevent misuse of it and the release of your personal data.

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For help with computing at NC State, contact the NC State University Help Desk:
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