Network and Information Security Services
The ITS Network and Information Security Services team provides network and information security services for the UIS campus. Their role is to fulfill the mission of the University by ensuring campus-managed network and communications systems and services are operated securely and efficiently, and that they are reliable, robust, and meeting the current and future needs of the campus community. In addition to the providing customer support services through the Technology Support Center, this group also oversees the physical and virtual servers, storage area networks, networking devices and cabling infrastructure, voice and emergency communication systems, identity management systems, and core services such as Exchange e-mail, Blackboard, and eDocs.
- Wireless network: ITS has recently completed an upgrade of all wireless access points on campus to the latest 802.11n standard. This upgrade provides greater speed, reliability and security to all wireless users on campus. For more details, click here.
- ICCN: The Intercampus Communications Network (ICCN) is a high-speed data network that connects all three University campuses – Urbana, Chicago, and Springfield – and offers access to bandwidth orders of magnitude greater than before for only a marginal cost increase. See this news release for more information.
- Internet2: Internet2® is a national and international collection of interconnected high performance networks that allow sites attached to these networks to interact in ways that are not possible using the commodity Internet. As a member of the Internet2 consortium, all UIS faculty, staff, and students have access to Internet2 when communicating with other Internet2 connected sites. Internet2 networks are a significant advance in networking capability for the research and education community.
- Campus Emergency Notification System: UIS-Alert sends e-mail and text messages in the event of a campus emergency or other significant event. UIS faculty, staff and students can sign up to receive messages from UIS-Alert. Additionally, the campus employs the Informacast alert notification system that sends visual and audible alert messages over the VoiP network to the campus telephones and to speakers located throughout the campus.
- Voice over IP: Most telephones on campus are voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phones using the campus data network for voice communications traffic. The phones are integrated with the Exchange e-mail system, allowing users to receive voice mail messages in their e-mail Inbox, and to play them back from any computer with Internet access and audio player software.
- Datacenters: ITS provides campus network services from multiple, specialized datacenters, both on campus and off. These datacenters are equipped with advanced capabilities such as multiple redundant air conditioning systems, uninterruptible power feeds, backup power generation systems, and advanced security systems, providing a very high level of reliability, availability and security.
- Servers and Storage Area Networks: ITS is currently undergoing a transformation in the use of servers and storage for network services, consolidating many individual physical server and storage ‘islands’ into fewer, more robust systems using server and shared storage technologies from Dell and virtualization technologies from VMware. This change will help improve service performance and availability while reducing maintenance and power/cooling requirements.
The Network and Information Security Services team provides ongoing education about good information security practices throughout the year to both students and employees. This information sharing takes place via many different avenues including supporting National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, e-mail advisories, and small group or one-on-one discussions. Topics range from avoiding common security mistakes to how to identify electronic information that needs extra protection.
Scheduled Maintenance Windows
ITS schedules a regular time period (a “maintenance window”) for performing routine system maintenance on the various computer and network systems hosted on the UIS campus. This maintenance window plan is intended to balance the desire for uninterrupted access to UIS information services against the competing needs to apply critical patches, test redundancy designs, upgrade system components, and perform other routine maintenance. The goals are to keep the amount of both planned and unplanned service disruption to a minimum while at the same time providing as much advance notice as possible to the UIS community about potential periods of service disruption.
Sometimes things just break. When they do, the Network and Information Security Services team drops what they’re doing and everyone jumps into action to locate and correct the problem quickly. Their combined knowledge, skills and passion for excellence means that your access to network services will be restored in the shortest time possible. Working together, they’ve earned the reputation for providing responsive highly available services, regularly achieving 99.99+% uptime over the years, and for grateful comments like this one: “Thank you for your work. These events serve to show us how much we rely on your office and how seldom we have any problems.” Marilyn K.
If you have a problem, a question or a concern about the services provided by this group or the security of your UIS electronic information, your first and most reliable point of contact for technology-related issues will always be the ITS Client Services Center. They are the folks who will know how to resolve your issues, answer your questions, and address your concerns. And if they can’t do this directly, they will know who to put you in contact with. You can reach ITS Client Services Center by phone at (217) 206-6000 or e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. Additional information and resources can be found at the ITS Client Services webpage.