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In order to improve our cyber security, IT will be automatically turning on the firewalls of all University managed PC’s.

Most PC’s will already have their firewall turned on but in some circumstances they may have been switched off, either by mistake or in an attempt to fix issues with software not working correctly.

If you have to switch off your PC’s firewall to carry out work, please contact IT for advice on how to open the required ‘ports’ on the firewall. This way you get all the protection of the firewall without it interfering with your work.

IT

This morning we have seen a return of the performance issues affecting the OWA CAS servers. The CPU on at least one server has been over loaded.

As a result we are starting to add an additional 2 CPU to all the servers and will be doing this PDQ. This will have affected some IMAP and mobile devices (iOS, Android etc) services.

If you have any more questions or require further advice then please contact IT.

We have been receiving reports of a spam email that poses as an email from our Service Desk. The subject line says, “Warning Warning Warning” and has masked its email address to appear as a UoR address.

This email is not an official email and clicking on the links could potentially harm your computer and compromise the information and documents on it. If you happen to receive this email,  delete it immediately.

The spam email looks like this :

 

(click the image to see a bigger version)

If you believe your computer may be at risk then please contact IT, our staff are always happy to help or answer questions.

IT

The Academic Computing Team have been working over the last year at developing a new, centrally provided computing service for Academics.

The Reading Research Cloud will enable us to automate management processes and make compute, storage and network resources readily available via a Self-Service Portal.

One of the large problems that Academics face is response time for requests. By using the self-service portal academics will be able to consume resources within minutes rather than days. By utilising cloud technologies that remain on site we are able to offer scalability but at reasonable costs.

The service is due to go live in January 2018 and we are currently working with early adopters and beta testers to prepare the service for delivery. If you are interested in becoming an early adopter or beta tester, please contact Ryan Kennedy, Academic Computing Team Manager via r.j.kennedy@reading.ac.uk.

The Academic Computing Team will be releasing more information over the coming months of what to expect when the service goes live.

IT

Today, and for the rest of the week in the Palmer building, IT will be there to advise you on all the awesome stuff IT gives you.

Matthew Gee, our IT Engagement Officer, will be there to tell you about the services we provide – including 1TB of Cloud storage for FREE.

Here he is yesterday at the academic success fair. Make sure to go up and ask him about what we can do for you.

 

We will also have IT Service Desk staff there to help you with any computer related advice or problems. Look out for them in their black shirts.

We have had multiple reports of a spam email coming into staff mailboxes. The subject line says ‘FINAL VALIDATION NOTICE’ and the main section contains our branding. It looks like this:

This email is not an official email and clicking on the links could potentially harm your computer and compromise the information and documents on it. If you happen to receive this email,  delete it immediately.

If you believe your computer may be at risk then please contact IT, our staff are always happy to help or answer questions.

IT

The University Executive Board (UEB) and Information Security Group have approved 2 new Information Security Policies, available online.

The Information Security Incident Response and Bring Your Own Device Policies exist to ensure that adequate security measures are in place when using personal devices for University business, and that necessary actions are taken in the event of a compromise of University Data. Compromises of data can range from emails being sent to incorrect recipients, lost or misplaced documents or IT equipment, through to malicious hacking of our systems. A means for any staff member to report actual or suspected compromises of University information is now available via the IMPS website.

All staff are required to read the Policies and accompanying procedures for incident reporting.

Contact IMPS for more.

IT

Staff who have a paid for Dropbox account associated with their UoR email have been receiving a planned and approved email from Dropbox Business asking for their details so they can be contacted when this service is available.

There have been some queries as to the legitimacy of this email – it is not spam. Please respond to this email as you wish.

The email is from Alex Stewart who is the Dropbox Education Territory Manager over at Dropbox Business.


It looks like this:

Hi xxxxx,

I’m a member of the UK Dropbox Education team and we’ve been working with your colleague Ryan Kennedy from the Academic Computing Team over the past five months.

Ryan & the team are finalising plans to deploy Dropbox Business across the university. As an existing Dropbox user, sharing your perspective will help. If you choose to respond to this email, providing your name and email address we can share this information with Ryan alongside your interest to upgrade to Dropbox Business. Alternatively, you can reach out to Ryan (r.j.kennedy@reading.ac.uk) directly to express your interest.

Please note that we haven’t shared your current Dropbox account information or any other personally identifying information with The University of Reading’s IT department.

Kind Regards,

Alex Stewart
Dropbox Education Territory Manager


If you receive emails you are unsure about then do not hesitate to contact us. Our staff will be happy to verify the legitimacy of the concerning email.

Contact IT for help regarding emails.

We are aware of issues with some group e-mail accounts where non-delivery reports are being received.

Error message are of the form;


“Delivery has failed to these recipients or group…”


We have identified the cause of this problem and are currently working to fix. We expect the majority of these to be fixed by 13:30 today, and all work completed by the end of the day.

If you are still receiving errors, please report these to the service desk.

Earlier today (27th July 2017) the IT department detected a substantial outbreak of Spyware (a malicious programme that aims to gather information from your computer) across the University affecting over 70 machines. While the programme is being prevented from running properly by the University’s Anti-Virus software, the machines them selves are still infected and there will be some disruption while they are cleaned and the outbreak is contained.

The software is spread via an email which does not have a standard text, but refers to either an email payment or an invoice that needs to be paid. Within the body of the email there is then a link, which when clicked on will mean that software is downloaded and the machine is infected. Two examples are:


Subject:   Please pay your invoice with id number: 539193

Good Day,

Thanks for the mail.

Click here to pay and see your payment details:

<link removed>

If you have any questions related to this attachment, we will be more than happy to assist you.

Sincerely Yours,

<name removed>


Subject: Email payment notification number: 25979

Greetings <name removed>,

Click here to pay and see your payment details:

<link removed>

If you need any further assistance or have queries regarding your invoice, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Regards,

<name removed>


If you receive an email like this you should not click on the link, and should just delete the email. Please remember the normal IT Security advice and be suspicious of all links and attachments you receive by email.

If you have any more questions or require further advice then please contact IT.

 

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