A recent stolen laptop incident in Oklahoma City underscores the importance of regularly backing up your laptop’s data files. A husband-wife team of cancer researchers at the University of Oklahoma went into a Panera restaurant for a bite to eat and came out to discover their car window shattered and their laptop gone. That’s disheartening enough, but the laptop contained years of research data accumulated in their search for a cure for prostate cancer.
It gets worse — an article about the incident states: “Unfortunately, most of the data was never backed up, a mistake Shin said could be a major setback in the fight against cancer.”
Continue reading “Back up your laptop!”
The June IT security roundtable will be 9-10:30 a.m. this Friday, June 5, in Union 213 on PGP Whole Disk Encryption software. Josh McCune, network security analyst, will give a presentation and facilitate the discussion.
You may recall the presentation on this topic back in December. We are ready to begin rolling out this software to those who purchased it. There will be a recap about what the software is and why it’s necessary, followed by a demonstration of the installation procedure. Departmental support personnel who will be responsible for installing this software are encouraged to attend, as well as server administrators who will be running their own instance of PGP Universal Server. The IT security roundtable is sponsored by SIRT and is open to everyone.
PGP Whole Disk Encryption (WDE) software is now ready for installation by those who purchased licenses last winter. In December 2008, K-State departments combined to make a bulk purchase of 1,012 PGP WDE licenses at a steeply discounted price for both Windows and Mac computers to provide another layer of protection for confidential information. Given the propensity for laptops to get stolen, whole disk encryption is a critical tool for protecting data stored on laptops. This product can also encrypt hard drives in desktop computers that store confidential data, as required by K-State policy.
Technical contacts in the departments that purchased licenses were contacted within the last week with installation instructions. More information about this important project, including an FAQ, is available on K-State’s PGP website. If you did not receive the e-mail with installation instructions and you believe you should have, contact Harvard Townsend right away (firstname.lastname@example.org, 785-532-2985).
Continue reading “Departments: PGP encryption software released for installation”
December’s IT security roundtable will be at 9-10:30 a.m. this Friday, Dec. 12, in Union 213 on encrypting laptop and desktop computers with PGP Whole Disk Encryption software. Harvard Townsend, chief information security officer, will facilitate discussion on the following topics: Continue reading “IT security roundtable Dec. 12: Laptop encryption with PGP”
The departmental response to the request for commitments to purchase licenses of PGP Whole Disk Encryption software for laptops and desktops was outstanding, so K-State will purchase 1,000 licenses rather than 500 at an even better price of $32 per license. At the deadline, departments committed to purchasing 849 licenses for Windows and 118 for Mac OS for a total of 967 licenses. Continue reading “K-State to purchase 1,000 licenses of PGP encryption software”
The impending bulk purchase of PGP Whole Disk Encryption software for K-State laptop and desktop computers was announced in last week’s InfoTech Tuesday. K-Staters are reminded that this Friday, Dec. 5, is the deadline for reserving licenses for your department at $38 each. Campus departments interesting in purchasing licenses must send the following information to Harvard Townsend (email@example.com) via e-mail by 5 p.m. Friday: Continue reading “Reminder to departments: PGP encryption purchase commitments due Dec. 5”
After an extensive evaluation, K-State’s Security Incident Response Team (SIRT) has selected PGP Whole Disk Encryption (PGP WDE) as the recommended product for protecting data on laptops. Given the propensity for laptops to get stolen (another faculty laptop was stolen out of a K-State lab this week), whole disk encryption is a critical tool for protecting data stored on laptops. Also, a draft data classification policy being reviewed by IRMC this fall will require whole disk encryption on K-State laptops that store confidential data. Continue reading “SIRT selects PGP for laptop encryption; purchase commitments needed”
A subcommittee of SIRT has been evaluating whole disk encryption software for laptop computers and is close to making a product recommendation. One of the candidate products is McAfee Safeboot, and SIRT has arranged a WebEx demonstration of the product so others can learn about it and provide feedback.
The WebEx demo will take place 9:30-10:45 a.m. this Friday, Sept. 5, in Union 213. During the first 15 minutes, Harvard Townsend, K-State’s IT Security Officer, will provide an overview of the project — the motivation, requirements, evaluation process, and cost estimates. McAfee representatives will then join in at 9:45 a.m. via WebEx and phone for the demo. Some subcommittee members will be available after the demo to receive feedback and answer questions.
Hardly a day goes by without hearing news of the theft of a laptop containing confidential data. Should a laptop get stolen, encrypting the data protects it from being misused for things like identity theft or financial fraud.
SIRT intends to recommend an affordable standard encryption product that departments or individual faculty/staff can buy for their laptops to provide another layer of protection and keep K-State’s sensitive information from getting into the wrong hands.