In a move to enhance information security, Western Carolina University will retire automatic e-mail forwarding on Thursday, Oct. 14, and launch a mobile communication device service that will enable WCU e-mail to be “pushed” to registered equipment such as cellular phones and personal digital assistants.
Conditions of service will include complying with security measures such as using passwords and activating idle-device lock after 15 minutes. Setup or license fees as well as annual maintenance fees will be applied and will vary depending on the type of device, according to information presented by CIO Craig Fowler at a recent forum. Some maintenance fees will be waived for the first year. Rollout of the new service will begin around Nov. 1.
Fowler noted the need to examine e-mail forwarding and mobile device services at WCU in light of their information capabilities in combination with how often such devices are lost, how many users do not use any kind of security, and the vulnerability of such equipment to malicious and unwanted software.
The service will offer an alternative to a connection protocol called Internet Message Access Protocol, or IMAP, which is scheduled to be disabled Jan. 17.
Faculty and staff will continue to be able to access or “pull” their e-mail, even without a registered mobile device, via the email.wcu.edu website.
Fowler also discussed the new computer pricing initiative, which takes effect Oct. 1. University of North Carolina General Administration negotiated with vendors for the best prices for a range of standard desktop and laptop computer configurations, and purchases using state funds, grants or other special funding may be made only from the approved vendor, which is currently Dell. The process for purchasing Apple products has not changed.
For more information, visit the IT website at http://it.wcu.edu.