Monday, April 14, 2014

Windows XP Support has ended

"As of April 8, 2014, support and updates for Windows XP are no longer available. Don't let your PC go unprotected." -- reads the Microsoft Windows XP support site.  http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/end-support-help

How is Manhattan College addressing this issue?

ITS began the process of contacting offices that process sensitive data earlier this year.  Since that time, we have developed a plan for upgrading or replacing machines running Windows XP in these areas.  Additionally, Faculty who received a laptop running Windows XP will be due for a replacement this summer and will receive a laptop running Windows 7.

Unlike other software issues that have been in the news lately, the end of support for Windows XP means that risk to the security of your PC increases over time (not necessarily immediately).  Manhattan College plans to phase out support for Windows XP over the summer - mostly through attrition (i.e. replacing old computers with new ones since all existing Windows XP computers now exceed the standard life-cycle of 3-4 years).

What do I need to do?

ITS has already upgraded all public computers from Windows XP to Windows 7.   We will continue to work with campus offices to identify Windows XP machines and develop a plan for upgrade or replacement.  If you are using a College supplied computer that is running Windows XP, please contact Client Services to discuss a plan to keep your machine secure.

Students:
If you have a machine running Windows XP, you have a few options:

- Upgrade to Windows 8 - You can find information about upgrading your current computer to Windows 8 here:  http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-8/upgrade-to-windows-8

- Get a new computer - There have been many developments in the PC/laptop market since Windows XP stopped shipping with new computers.  Besides purchasing a new Windows computer with the current version Windows 8, Apple computers have become more affordable and the introduction of Chromebooks

- Turn that old Windows XP machine into a Linux computer - If your old computer is not able to run Windows 8, you may want to try Linux (a free operating system on which Chromebooks are based).


Friday, April 11, 2014

Heartbleed Bug

The following is an update to the Manhattan College community regarding the recently discovered Heartbleed software bug - http://heartbleed.com/

ITS has been working with our software vendors to investigate our exposure to the recently identified Heartbleed bug that affects OpenSSL software - one of the most common cryptographic libraries used to secure Internet communications such as secure websites (via https://) and VPNs.  

The majority of our "production" systems such as www.manhattan.edu, Banner, self-service, SSO, Moodle, etc were never vulnerable to the flaw based on the version of software installed on these systems.  Some "test" systems with limited access were vulnerable, but patched by Tuesday AM.  Additionally, ITS is taking preventative measures to update software and configurations on all systems running OpenSSL cryptographic software as a precaution.


What do I need to do?  Be aware of scams!

In the coming days, you may be notified by various services related to your social media, banking, or other accounts potentially affected by the Heartbleed bug.  Take these notifications seriously and consider changing your password on these services.   Currently, no action is required for your JasperNet account.  If this changes, the campus community will be notified.

Be aware of scams!  With the legitimate notices will come "phishing" scams from illegitimate sources asking for your username, password and/or other personal information.  ALWAYS verify the legitimacy of these types of messages and NEVER give your password or personal information unless you are certain that you are dealing with a trusted service.  Tips on how to avoid phishing scams can be found here:  http://www.phishing.org/scams/prevent-phishing/

Monday, March 24, 2014

Gmail Account Hacks and Checking Account Activity



"Last account activity", a very useful feature of Google mail, shows you information about recent activity with your account. This information is extremely useful for detecting or verifying unauthorized access to your email account. Critical information about each time you account was accessed, including time and IP address, is available with "last account activity".


Click here for detailed instructions on accessing and using the information made available by "last account activity".

Remember, Manhattan College ITS will never ask for your password or other personal information via email. Messages requesting such information are fraudulent and should be deleted.  If you detect suspicious activity in your email account you should change your password immediately at https://start.manhattan.edu/changepassword/login.  We recommend changing your password periodically to prevent fraudulent activity.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

East Hill and Horan WIFI Improvements

Installation work is wrapping up after a week long sprint to improve WIFI coverage in East Hill and Horan Residence Halls.

Upon returning from Spring Break, students in East Hill and Horan will be greeted by improvements made to the buildings' WIFI infrastructure.  Installation work will be wrapping up mid-day Sunday after a week-long sprint to make improvements while students were away.  WIFI coverage was effectively doubled by a mix a new WIFI access point installations and optimized locations.

Additional deployments were installed top-down in both buildings.  Returning students on higher floors (11,10,9,8...) will notice newly installed devices in many more locations, while students on lower floors (2,3,4,5...) will see in-progress wiring awaiting access point installation.  Remaining locations will be completed throughout the coming days.

What's this?

Installations on lower floors that are not 100% complete may show ceiling mounted boxes like these where an access point will be installed.  Other locations may be awaiting installation of these boxes later this week.  Rest assured, our plans include upgrades to ALL FLOORS. Installations will resume on Monday, but will be deployed slower to ensure minimal disruption to students living on these floors.

If you are experiencing WIFI issues upon your return, please let us know.  We are working to bring new access points online while reconfiguring (or in some cases, removing) old ones.  Expect improvements upon your your return as well as throughout the week......

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Tell ITS


#TellITS - We would like to express our gratitude to the Manhattan College community for continuing to reach out to us for tech support as well as provide us with feedback on our services. The 'Tell ITS' icon found on public computers across campus is a convenient way to communicate with us and help us identify technology-related issues.

Please continue to reach out to us via the TellITS form (http://manhattan.edu/tellits). You may also report issues to its@manhattan.edu or 718-862-7973. The faster we know about an issue, the faster we can resolve it. We need your continued support in helping us identify issues and get them resolved as quickly and efficiently as possible.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Google Apps Outage Affecting Hangouts, Sheets, & Talk

There is currently a Google Apps outage affecting Hangouts, Sheets, and Talk.  It seems to be sporadic.  If you are experiencing the issue, know that google is working to resolve it.  You can check here for updates: http://www.google.com/appsstatus#hl=en&v=status

Spring Break Limited Coverage

Please note that during the week of March 17 - 21 2014 is Spring Break.  During this time we will have very limited coverage of the Client Services offices.  Hours of Operation will be Monday to Friday 9AM - 4:30PM.  During these times please expect that response times will be slower than normal.