Implementing a New Phone System: Phase 1 Starts July 31, 2018

LITS is working with Windstream Communications to implement a new phone system on the Mitel platform.  The implementation of the new phone system will begin July 31 at 3:00pm when the following departments located in Pelletier Library and Murray Hall are converted to Mitel.  

  • Library and Information Technology Services (LITS)
  • Learning Commons
  • The Allegheny Gateway (Career Education, Civic Engagement, etc..)

Beginning on August 1st to reach individuals in those departments by phone you will need to dial 9 814 332-XXXX to reach them until your department is converted to the new system at that point 4 digit dialing will return.

The Mitel phone system will be fully implemented before the end of the Fall Semester 2018. Specifics of the remaining phases of the project will be shared with individual departments and members of the campus community as they are finalized with Windstream.  Once fully implemented, the College will experience cost savings and the features of a modern phone system.

Thank you in advance for accommodating the minor inconvenience of having to dial 9 and the ten digit number for a few months this fall.  Should you have questions please, contact James Fadden <jfadden@allegheny.edu>.  

Google Drive UI updates Announced

Google announced they are making some updates to the look and feel of Google Drive on the web. There’s no change in functionality, but some icons and buttons have moved, and there’s a range of visual tweaks to align with Google’s latest material design principles.

Specific changes include:

  • The logo in the top left has been changed to the Google Drive logo.
  • The custom MyAllegheny logo, moves to the top right.
  • The Settings icon has been moved in line with the search bar.
  • The Help Center icon has been moved in line with the search bar.
  • The page background is now white, not gray.
  • The “New” button has been updated.
  • The font used for headers has been changed.

Additional information about using the Google Drive or any G Suite app is available at the G Suite Learning Center.

Opt In to the New Gmail

Starting on May 9, 2018 members of Allegheny College will have access to the new Gmail layout and features.  Individuals may opt in early to take advantage of new features including:
    • Access to calendar events, notes, task lists, and add-ons right from Gmail.
    • “Snooze” email until later, if you don’t have time to look at it now.
    • Use suggested replies—no need to enter text.
    • and more…
Additional information about using the New Gmail or any G Suite app is available at the G Suite Learning Center.

Reception for Rita Manning, Teresa Pratt, and Alan Bartlett

Please stop in the Collaboratory in Pelletier on Tuesday, May 8, between 11:00 to 12:15 to offer best wishes to our Pelletier friends and colleagues Rita Manning, Teresa Pratt, and Alan Bartlett. Alan, Teresa, and Rita are retiring at the end of June, and we want take this opportunity now before our community scatters for the summer to thank them for all that they do and have done. We hope to see you there.

Get to Know Google Meet

Google Hangout Meet LogoGoogle Meet is now available to Allegheny as a video conferencing solution.

According to the G Suite Learning Center with Google Meet you can “hold impromptu video meetings on the go, virtual training classes around the world, remote interviews, and much more.”

Learn more about using Google Meet at the G Suite Learning Center and in less than 10 minutes you will know how to start a meeting including the following skills

You can also learn how to join a meeting, collaborate in a video meeting, and manage device settings on that page.

Phishing Attempts on the Rise

Cyber security firms report multiple targeted phishing attacks in recent weeks that use the recipients’ social security numbers to gain trust and lure recipients into clicking on a link that installs malware on the recipient’s computer. The attack mimicked email messages from credit unions and other businesses including FedEx.

It is a good reminder to be alert to this and other phishing attempts. Even if an email appears to be from a trusted organization (your bank, FedEx, an employer) and has information you might consider private (your social security number), it might still be phishy. Be alert!

Please take a moment and review the LITS page on identifying phishing attempts: https://sites.allegheny.edu/lits/its/tutorials/protecting-data-identity-and-computer-online/is-it-phishing/  

 

Access to Enterprise Systems Restored

System and Network administrators restored access to enterprise systems at approximately 11:55am on February 8, 2018.

If you experience an inability to connect to services like WebAdvisor, WebHelpDesk, Colleague, Informer or other online services, please report to the InfoDesk by calling ext 3768.

Disruption Accessing Enterprise Systems Reported

The InfoDesk received reports from individuals in the community about the inability to access several of the enterprise systems including Colleague, WebAdvisor, PaperCut, and Informer.

System administrators are addressing the issue.

Print Server Issue Addressed

On Monday, February 5th, the InfoDesk received reports from individuals of their inability to print.  On investigation the system administrator needed to restart the server and perform unscheduled maintenance.

The System administrator worked on the issue starting at 2:45pm and full functionality was restored by 3:00pm.

Should you experience an inability to print at this point, please report your experience to the InfoDesk or by submitting a ticket using WebHelpDesk.

Update on Meltdown and Spectre

You may have seen news articles about two significant flaws recently found in hardware used in computers, smartphones, tablets and other devices, called Spectre and Meltdown. Security researchers discovered these flaws, which impact the computer processors (CPUs) that are at the heart of all the computerized equipment.

The bugs affect computer hardware dating to the mid-1990s, so updates to operating systems such as Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and iOS are required to protect devices from these flaws.  These bugs could allow hackers to steal data from your devices through malicious software or a hacked web site.

Technology vendors have invested significant resources in securing their cloud services and providing updates and patches for operating systems to address the vulnerabilities of Spectre and Meltdown.    Information Technology Services (ITS) will apply those patches to College-managed technology resources (including College-owned Windows and Mac computers) through the regular patching process.   

As the exploit can be triggered by a hacked website or malicious software and is not limited to College owned technology, it is a good reminder that individuals should do the following on their personal devices.

  1. be sure to install security patches distributed by the manufacturer on personal devices and computers
  2. only download software from trusted sources
  3. be alert for phishing attempts that could be used to install malware

Should the situation with this issue change, we will provide updates as appropriate.