OIT News – November 2016

OIT News
Monthly news briefs, information and announcements
Office of Information Technology, NC State University
Issue 109, November 2016


Follow OIT on Twitter @NCStateOIT
For up-to-the-minute reports on OIT systems, see SysNews
For help with computing problems, contact the NC State Help Desk


01: Don’t miss NC State’s “5 Years of Google” celebration on Nov. 30!
02: OIT to develop new Cyber Security Liaison Program
03: OIT to decommission WRAP on Dec. 31
04: Save time with Action Items in G Suite
05: Call for nominations for Gertrude Cox Award
06: OIT training workshops available
07: SAR training scheduled for Dec. 7
08: Be cyber secure during this holiday season!


01: Don’t miss NC State’s “5 Years of Google” celebration on Nov. 30!
NC State will celebrate “5 Years of Google” on Wednesday, Nov. 30 — exactly five years from “Google Day,” when campus officially moved to Google Apps @ NC State!

And, what a day it’s going to be!

The opening session will kick off at 12:30 p.m. in Talley’s Piedmont-Mountains Ballroom. Join us for this exciting opportunity to learn how the campus community is using the many cool tools in G Suite (formerly Google Apps) to communicate, collaborate and work more efficiently.

The “5 Years of Google” Celebration will feature two breakout sessions with presentations from NC State students, faculty and staff that will demonstrate how to maximize Google tools. They include:

  • Breakout Session I
    1 p.m. to 1:45 p.m.
    Third Floor, Talley Student Union

    • Teaching & Research with Google
    • Working Remotely with G Suite
    • Off the Beaten Google Path
  • Breakout Session II
    2 p.m. to 2:45 p.m.
    Third Floor, Talley Student Union

    • G Suite Best Practices
    • Google Security
    • Taking G Suite to the Next Level

During the closing session, Jonathan Rochelle, director of Google Product Management and co-founder of Google Docs and Google Drive, will deliver the keynote address from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. in the Piedmont-Mountains Ballroom. This event is open to the public. Rochelle will provide:

  • an overview of Google’s use on NC State campus
  • ways campus users can leverage Google resources securely
  • a sneak preview of Google’s latest developments for the education environment

To register for all events, visit the 5 Years of Google at NC State website. Space is limited!

Got Google questions? While you’re attending the celebration, get your questions answered by our Google experts at several Information Booths.

Light refreshments will be served and attendees will have opportunities to win prizes throughout the day. For more information, visit the 5 Years of Google at NC State website.

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02: OIT to develop new Cyber Security Liaison Program
NC State, like many other institutions of higher education, is at risk from threats to its digital assets and daily operations. In an effort to strengthen NC State’s security infrastructure against security challenges, NC State leadership has charged the Office of Information Technology Security and Compliance unit (OIT S&C), along with campus IT partners, to implement and manage a Cyber Security Liaison Program.  

The program will be a network of designated college and department/unit representatives who will collaborate with OIT S&C to defend against cyber threats. The program’s mission is to keep the University’s digital assets secure by continuously identifying and addressing weaknesses in its cyber defenses. This team will be empowered to address security incidents and compliance requirements at the college, division or department/unit level in coordination with OIT S&C. Some activities that the liaison team will be engaged in include:

  • Briefing local constituents on security issues
  • Serving as ambassadors for security standards and best practices
  • Recommending best practices to secure data within their unit
  • Assisting in classifying home unit data/systems
  • Reporting any suspected breach/exposure of sensitive data to OIT S&C
  • Providing home unit concerns/feedback on security matters to OIT S&C
  • Serving as point of contact for S&C identified incidents
  • Participating in periodic security training, briefings and other events

University Council members (vice chancellors, vice provosts, deans, and directors) are asked to appoint at least one staff member who will serve as lead to represent their area on the team.  Additional representatives may be appointed at the department level based on the size and scope of the division or college. Appointed representative(s) should be added to this Google Sheet by Wednesday, Nov. 23.

Each representative should have basic knowledge of the business processes or information technology systems within the college, division or department/unit. Basic IT security knowledge is a plus, but is not required. OIT S&C will coordinate and provide ongoing training to help liaisons develop basic security knowledge, greatly strengthening the University’s ability to defend against increasing threats. Liaisons are expected to commit about three hours per month to this program.

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03: OIT to decommission WRAP on Dec. 31
On Saturday, Dec. 31, OIT will decommission the WRAP authentication service. All NC State websites and services should move to Shibboleth for authentication ahead of this deadline.  

To prepare for the decommission, OIT has disabled the download of WRAP authentication modules. In addition, OIT has worked with many of the larger users of WRAP and successfully migrated most sites to Shibboleth. If you have not migrated your site, please see Moving from WRAP to Shibboleth.

If you are a:

  • WordPress user, OIT recommends that you use the Engineering Multiauth tool to authenticate via Shibboleth and WP Local auth services.
  • user of www4.ncsu.edu who needs to restrict access to your content, OIT encourages you to move your WRAP-protected content to an appropriate university, college or department web service. If you are unsure of the appropriate platform for your content, visit Get on the Web to investigate your options.


If your content is course-related or you need assistance with NC State’s learning technologies, such as Moodle, WolfWare, Mediasite, and Collaborate, please contact DELTA’s LearnTech Help Desk at learntech@ncsu.edu, LearnTech Request or 919.513.7094.

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04: Save time with Action Items in G Suite
Delegating tasks in Google Docs just got easier with Action Items. Docs can now automatically recognize and suggest Action Items based on names, keywords and phrases you type directly into your document.

For example, if you type, “Katie will schedule meeting,” in your document, Docs will offer the following suggested Action Item. You can choose to either:

In the suggestion action item window, "Katie will schedule meeting" is followed by the link to the email address "+katie@ncsu.edu". Under "Assign to +katie@ncsu.edu?" is the Assign button and Dismiss button.

  • Accept Docs’ suggested Action Item and assign the task to Katie; or
  • Dismiss the recommended action.

You can also manually create Action Items in Docs, Sheets and Slides by clicking the comment icon and tagging responsible individuals.




Once the suggested Action Item is assigned, Katie will receive an email with comment details and can view a snapshot of all assigned items within Google Drive or from the Docs, Sheets or Slides home page.

Under Katie's Folder, the shared doc, "Testing Document 123.docx", is followed by a circle 1 icon.







As Action Items are completed, Katie can simply mark the tasks as done to dismiss the message.

The left is a headshot with "Assigned to Katie Tester". On the right is the check icon to mark as done and hide discussion. On the bottom, the discussion about this action shows.






To learn more about these enhancements and other new Google features, check out the latest edition of
What’s New In G Suite.

For training tips, follow the NC State Google Services Team on Google+. To view upcoming workshops, visit Classmate.

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05: Call for nominations for Gertrude Cox Award
Nominations for the Gertrude Cox Award for Innovative Excellence in Teaching and Learning with Technology are now being accepted through Monday, Jan. 16, 2017. Nominations should include projects completed during the academic year 2015–2016.

The award recognizes “the creative pedagogy of NC State’s faculty and technical staff and their work in integrating new technologies into effective teaching strategies.” First awarded in fall 2002, the award is named in honor of Cox, “The First Lady of Statistics,” who came to NC State in 1940 to establish the university’s distinguished Department of Statistics.

For submission guidelines, visit the Gertrude Cox Award website. The awards are presented each spring at the Teaching and Learning Symposium that is hosted by the Office of the Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost and the Office of Faculty Development.

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06: OIT training workshops available 
Upcoming workshops include:

  • Google Calendar: Advanced Productivity will be offered Wednesday, Nov. 16 and Dec. 21 from 9 a.m. to noon in Room 110 of the Avent Ferry Technology Center. If you’re comfortable with the basics of Google Calendar and are ready to use some more of its features, this hands-on workshop is for you. This workshop will focus on calendar sections (my calendar, other calendars, mini calendar), event details and calendar management. Specific features will include event attachments, maps and directions, sharing and embedding calendars, labs, quick add, search options, mobile notifications, and scheduling Hangouts (video conferencing). To register, visit Classmate.
  • Benefits of 2-Step Verification will be offered Wednesday, Nov. 16 from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. in Room 110 of the Avent Ferry Technology Center. Register for this one-hour session to learn how this security feature can protect your account from phishing attacks and get detailed instructions on how to enable this tool. To register, visit Classmate.
  • Create, Collaborate & Get Organized with Google Drive will be offered Thursday, Nov. 17 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. in Room 110 of the Avent Ferry Technology Center. Google Drive is the backbone of your Google experience, combining storage, access, sharing, and collaboration with the power of Google Apps. During this hands-on workshop, you will learn how to use Drive to manage your resources in a collaborative environment. Topics will include organizing files and folders, securing documents through file sharing permissions, group editing and collaboration, and common Google Apps tools. To register, visit Classmate.
  • Gmail: Advanced Productivity will be offered Tuesday, Nov. 22 from 9 a.m. to noon in Room 110 of the Avent Ferry Technology Center. Building on Gmail: More than your Inbox, this advanced hands-on workshop takes Gmail to the next level. You will learn more about labels, filters, canned responses, scheduling Google Calendar Events, Hangouts, and using Google Drive through Gmail, along with any planned or newly released features. To register, visit Classmate.
  • Gmail: More than Your Inbox will be offered Tuesday, Dec. 6 from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. in Room 110 of the Avent Ferry Technology Center. There is more to Gmail than just composing, replying to and forwarding messages. This workshop will provide an in-depth overview of Gmail features, including an emphasis on labels and search tools, contacts management, chat, tasks, settings, labs, and new features. A reference including many additional helpful resources will also be provided. To register, visit Classmate.
  • Google Forms: Data Collection and Analysis will be offered Thursday, Dec. 8 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. in Room 110 of the Avent Ferry Technology Center. Easily build surveys, plan events and gather data with Google Forms. This workshop will cover the basics of creating forms, collaborative editing and viewing data in spreadsheets and charts. It also will highlight several advanced features, including custom themes, page breaks, question validation, and embedding forms in websites. To register, visit Classmate.
  • Intermediate WordPress: Content Management will be offered Tuesday, Dec. 13 from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. in Room 110 of the Avent Ferry Technology Center. You’ve learned the Basics of WordPress, but now what? How do you take all of your ideas and communicate them effectively on the Web? In this workshop, you will learn effective information architecture, the difference between good content and bad content, and how to ensure your website is accessible to users with disabilities. For workshop prerequisites and to register, visit Classmate.
  • Scheduling a YouTube Live Event (formerly Google Hangout on Air) will be offered Thursday, Dec. 15 from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. in Room 110 of the Avent Ferry Technology Center. Are you interested in broadcasting a presentation, meeting or Web event to a large audience? Register for this session to learn how to organize and conduct a YouTube Live event and how to manage event tools to enhance the viewer’s experience. To register, visit Classmate.
  • Introduction to Lucidchart Diagrams and Lucidpress at NC State (YouTube Live) will be offered online Tuesday, Dec. 13 from noon to 1 p.m. Did you know you can make fast and professional flowcharts, organization charts, brochures, flyers, and reports inside Google Apps? Provided free at NC State, Lucidchart Diagrams and Lucidpress extensions combine an easy-to-use drag-and-drop interface with the power of Google Apps collaboration, editing, and sharing. This online session will provide an overview of how to use Lucidchart Diagrams and Lucidpress to get your ideas flowing and how you can make them work for you. To view this online event, visit YouTube on the scheduled day and time and watch from the comfort of your own computer.
  • Advanced Drive will be offered Tuesday, Dec. 20 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. in Room 110 of the Avent Ferry Technology Center. Are you comfortable creating folders, sharing documents and using Drive’s basic organization tools? If you can answer “yes” to these questions, then you’re ready to take Drive to the next level. Come to this advanced workshop to learn about file management, uploading, exporting and converting documents, advanced searching, installing apps, and newly added functionality. To register, visit Classmate.

For other available training sessions, visit Classmate Scheduled Workshops. If you are interested in custom software training, complete the Custom Training Form. Email all training questions to classreg@ncsu.edu.

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07: SAR training scheduled for Dec. 7
Security Access Request (SAR) training for campus requestors and approvers of access to secured university data will be held on Wednesday, Dec. 7 from 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. in Room 110 of the Avent Ferry Technology Center. To register, visit Classmate.

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08: Be cyber secure during this holiday season!
During busy shopping seasons, online shoppers are especially vulnerable to cyber criminals hoping to steal credit card and other sensitive data. Here are some of the top measures you can take to secure your data and help ensure you don’t fall prey to online attacks.

  • Be on the lookout for phishing and smishing scams. Phishing is one of the main ways criminals can hack into your accounts, by deceiving you into clicking on dangerous links or taking other actions. Smishing is similar to phishing, except that malicious links are sent in Short Message Service (SMS) or text messages to scam you. When you recognize the signs of such scams, you can better protect yourself from identify and financial theft.
  • Set up two-factor authentication services. Google 2-Step Verification as well as other two-factor authentication services (such as or those provided by banks, email providers, and e-commerce sites) prevent hackers from accessing your accounts, even if they obtain your login and password information via a phishing or smishing scam or malicious website.
  • Keep your software and systems up-to-date. Install the latest security patches and software updates on all your devices to help prevent hackers from from exploiting weaknesses in outdated apps to gain access to your personal and financial data. See NC State’s guide for Mobile Device Security and resources for free antivirus software and other approved antivirus products.
  • Use trusted apps. Only install mobile apps from trusted sources, such as Android, Apple or Amazon app stores. Research feedback on lesser-known apps and don’t download apps that request access to mobile features they shouldn’t require. When in doubt, skip the download and find another app.
  • Keep unique and strong passwords. Refer to NC State’s Password Standard and suggestions on use of passphrases for password strength.
  • Be wary of delivery notifications. Phishers often use fake delivery notifications during the shopping season. Do not click delivery notification links from emails you aren’t expecting. It is also best to go directly to USPS, UPS and FedEx sites to track your deliveries.
  • Keep watch over your accounts. Credit cards often have no-fault protections against fraud, if misuse is identified. Set up alerts for any card you use, whether credit or debit, and check your accounts regularly to help identify suspicious activity. Even the smallest charge could be a sign of fraud, so report anything you don’t recognize to your banking or credit card institution immediately.
  • Only shop using secure networks. Limit your use of public networks to general browsing and never make purchases or access accounts on unsecured networks, which leave you more visible to hackers.
  • Shop secure sites. Ensure any website you purchase from has https:// in the address bar during checkout. The “s” means it’s a secure connection, and your personal data will be encrypted during the buying process.  
  • Shop trusted sites. Beware of clicking advertising links to unknown sites. Fraudulent sites post online ads to lure in unsuspecting shoppers and gain their financial information. If a sale is too good to be true, it probably is! The same is true for sites boasting big giveaways and free software downloads. Shop well-known sites with good reputations. Consider using secure reputation software that gives ratings for trusted and untrusted sites.
  • Avoid fake charities. When making donations, research charitable organizations on Charity Navigator and the Better Business Bureau to avoid scams.

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