Michigan IT Newsletter: October 2016

Michigan IT Newsletter from the Office of the CIO

Message from Don Welch, CISO

Celebrate National Cyber Security Awareness Month with me this October by participating in special campus events, reading the articles in this newsletter, and checking out the Safe Computing website. Learn what the university is doing to protect your IT security and what you can do to protect yourself. Cyber security is a shared responsibility.

The single-most important thing you can do to protect your accounts and personal information is to turn on two-factor authentication. I'm excited that we will offer the university community that important option later this month. See “Protect yourself and the U: Turn on two-factor for Weblogin.” We also encourage you to turn on two-factor for your personal accounts whenever you can.

SUMIT_2016, the 12th annual cyber security conference, will be held on Thursday, October 20, at Rackham Auditorium on the Ann Arbor campus. I am looking forward to hearing this year's speakers and panelists discuss their insights on hacking and securing the Internet of Things, the IT security industry in Ann Arbor, and hacking the vote. I hope to see you there!

During October, our Dissonance Speaker Series will have sessions at SUMIT and on October 27. This exciting series explores the confluence of technology, law, privacy, and security from a global and national perspective. It aims to increase universitywide multidisciplinary discourse and support university initiatives related to data science. Join the discussion.

The entire university community is invited to shape and fine tune a new version of our IT Security Policy that will be the foundation of a universitywide security program. See Feedback needed on revised IT security policy.

Please take a few moments to explore the completely redesigned Safe Computing website. The site's navigation and design have been overhauled based on user input and usability best practices. Our news updates and alerts are still there, and you may even find some tips to share with others to help them celebrate National Cyber Security Awareness Month.

The threat landscape is daunting, and cyber criminals are more sophisticated than ever, but the university is rising to the challenge. Remember, security is a never-ending journey, and we all need to do our part.

Don Welch
Chief Information Security Officer
University of Michigan

Feedback needed on revised IT security policy

by Dana Fair, ITS Communications

Feedback from Michigan IT community members is needed on U-M’s IT Security Policy (SPG 601.27), which is currently under revision.

The revised policy is composed of a revamped cybersecurity risk management framework and underlying standards that incorporate best practices for protecting the institution's critical IT infrastructure and data assets. Ultimately, the new policy establishes a more comprehensive and rigorous IT security and information assurance program for the Ann Arbor, Dearborn and Flint campuses, and the Health System.

“We’re looking for IT staff from the various campuses to provide us with their thoughts and input,” says Don Welch, U-M’s chief information security officer. “These staff members will play a leading role in interpreting and implementing aspects of the revised security policy and the supporting IT standards, guidelines and procedures for schools, colleges and units. We need their perspectives and collective wisdom before the security policy is complete.”

Any university community member can submit comments on the proposed SPG revision as well as on drafts of 14 IT standards through November 23 (the day before Thanksgiving). Individuals may provide feedback using the online form on the Office of the CIO website. Questions should be directed to iia.inform@umich.edu.

Related Articles

Protect yourself and the U: Turn on two-factor for Weblogin

by Jessica Rohr, ITS Communications

The threat of cyber attacks on universities is real, but you can help foil the hackers and add extra protection to your U-M account. Beginning later this month, all members of the U-M community will have the option to turn-on two-factor authentication (Duo) to protect their U-M Google Mail and Drive, personal and financial information in Wolverine Access, U-M Box, and more.

How real is the threat?

A 2015 cyber attack at Penn State University exposed the personal information and passwords of 18,000 faculty, staff, and students, as well as that of 500 research partners. To protect against future attacks, Penn State mandated the use of Duo two-factor authentication for their faculty and staff. Two-factor authentication combines a password (something you know) with a second factor, like a passcode or push notification sent to your phone (something you have).

Assistant Director of Identity and Access Management DePriest Dockins says, “Your U-M accounts contain a tremendous amount of personal and financial information, so you don’t want that data falling into the wrong hands. If someone gets your UMICH (Level-1) password, you can lose money, your research, even your reputation. The university has security measures in place, but passwords just aren’t enough these days.”

The Weblogin option

Later this month, more than 20,000 currently using Duo to access U-M systems that require it will be the first invited to turn on two-factor for accessing additional services via the Weblogin page. Turning on this option means that ALL services currently requiring authentication via Weblogin will now also require two-factor authentication with Duo. You will not be prompted for two-factor when connecting to the same services via apps, such as the Google Mail app on your smartphone. Two-factor authentication is becoming widely available for commercial services and sites, and you can also use Duo for many of these.

Ease and convenience

More than 100 faculty, staff, and students piloted Duo, and 75% report they would continue using the feature. The majority noted they were only required to use Duo once or twice a day. Pilot participants also acknowledged Duo’s convenience and ease. One said, “It is very user friendly and I like how fast it is to authenticate.” Another noted, “Overall I appreciate the extra security and for me this trumps the slight annoyance of having to authenticate on my iPhone once or twice during the day.”

Duo in your department

If you would like to promote the optional use of Duo in your unit, please contact the project team. More information about the option to turn on two-factor to protect your personal information, as well as information about other two-factor authentication expansion efforts at U-M, will be available in the coming weeks. Learn more about two-factor authentication (Duo) at U-M. To switch a departmental system to Duo, check out this documentation on how to implement Duo on U-M systems, then contact the ITS Service Center to have your system listed at Systems that Require Duo Two-Factor.

UMHS prioritizes information assurance

by Andrew Rosenberg, MD, U-M Medical School & Interim Health System CIO

On September 14, the Medical School Information Services (MSIS) and Medical Center Information Technology (MCIT) teams came together to create the newly envisioned Health Information Technology & Services organization (HITS). Among this new organization’s most important values is to approach IT and information services in an even more integrated manner that will support the strategies of the U-M Health System and Medical School.

Our mission—to discover, implement, and support secure, mission-critical health information technology and services—complements and underscores the importance of our new, universitywide investments with the U-M Information Assurance program led by Don Welch, U-M chief information security officer, and directed by Jack Kufahl, the Health System’s chief information security officer.

Collaborating at this high-level will ensure that the HITS teams improve the Health System’s ability to protect our confidential patient, financial, and research information, as well as defend the systems that produce and use these data. We will do this work by combining HITS members’ expertise along with the knowledge and services of the Information Assurance program. These joint efforts will create the opportunity for us to contribute to the broader information security, compliance, and privacy domains of U-M.

When it comes to sharing data and information, the academic medical center has become a uniquely complex part of our university. Our increasingly interconnected systems, data, and services have a profound impact on how we interact with our patients, providers, researchers, educators, and students. The great expectation and requirement of fulfilling our mission in a safe and secure environment has never been more important. With the support of a strong Information Assurance team, and new investments we are all making in these areas, we can move forward confidently and effectively, together.

The Gould standard: Bringing great CRM to campus

by Marc Brigolin, ITS Customer Relationship Manager; photo: Ken Caldwell, ITS Communications

Haley Gould has landed her dream job. Her new role within the Office of the CIO and ITS as the first-ever enterprise constituent relationship management (CRM) solution architect is the culmination of over three years of work.

A U-M alum, Gould worked in admissions and recruitment before transitioning to the School of Education, which needed a solution to better track admissions. She ultimately helped kick off a pilot of a CRM tool from the vendor Salesforce in collaboration with the Ross School of Business, Ford School of Public Policy, School of Education, and the School of Information. “CRM is not just one tool, but rather an ecosystem of products that offers integration with source systems and adds value around institutional data, event management, and surveys,” she explains.

Gould will engage with the U-M community to create a reference architecture and identify use cases in an effort to develop a CRM service model and offering from ITS. “These products can help identify how many people we are reaching as a community and if we are reaching them effectively, so we can be more strategic,” says Gould. “They also allow for customization and collaboration, so the university can be more cognizant of their message across the enterprise.’”

Gould admits there will be challenges to embracing collaborative CRM practices on campus. “CRM can feel somewhat disparate and each unit has their own specific needs,” she says. “Our planned campus CRM service will have multiple central product implementations that people can plug into based on their domain and core business process. This will be a new model for campus.” Gould says that the biggest challenge remains the number of unknowns. “There are many different business cases that need to drive analytics. With many of those in the first stages, we are not yet entirely certain what kind of data will be there and what is possible.”

Gould is very excited about her new role and the potential CRM has to evolve at U-M. “I can help people use tools that I love within a community that I love. There are a lot of universities that are seen as innovators—I want U-M to be the best successful case using CRM.”

Eager to learn more about the future of CRM? Gould recommends joining the Michigan CRM Community of Practice (CoP). The CoP has about 230 members and meets at least once a semester. There will also be a CRM presentation at the 2016 Michigan IT Symposium, November 21–22.

Share your story, learn from each other

By Stefanie Horvath, ITS and Office of the CIO; Nancy Herlocher, LSA; photo: Joel Iverson, ITS Communications

How are YOU developing, implementing, or using technology to enrich the U-M experience and inspire people to do amazing things?

Share your story

The U-M IT Strategic Plan represents how information technology supports the vision of our faculty leaders across the entire university, including the health system. The Strategy & Planning team within the Office of the CIO is collecting stories that highlight the progress on the initiatives and strategic goals. The team will use these stories to help measure progress towards the university’s IT strategy.

“There are over 2,700 IT professionals working hard each day to support the students, faculty, researchers, staff, and alumni within our community. IT staff may not realize that the work they’re doing contributes to the IT strategy and helps to drive it forward. By capturing and putting a spotlight on some of these efforts, we hope to spark further awareness of progress, collaboration, and conversation,” said Cathy Curley, executive director for strategy and planning.

The Strategy & Planning team will continue to share and discuss the IT strategy with faculty, researchers, and staff to seek further input on initiatives and needs that directly support the goals. If you have questions or comments, or are interested in having a representative from the Office of the CIO facilitate a discussion about the strategy with your team, contact the IT Strategic Planning Team.

Learn from each other

The 2016 Michigan IT Symposium takes place on Monday, November 21 and Tuesday, November 22 at the Michigan League. The afternoon of November 21 will be set aside to allow more time to review posters and engage in deeper conversations with poster creators. All posters will be categorized by how they advance U-M IT Strategic Plan goals and will use related templates to make it easier to visually identify them. Nearly 30 presentations and a full day of activities will take place on November 22. Attendees can also continue to access the 60 posters on topics including big data, diversity, professional development, and research.

There are also several new features for 2016:

  • Hands-on training session topics include Hadoop, Docker, Amazon Web Services, and Getting the Most Out of the Symposium. Participation in these sessions will require registration and a laptop. Some sessions will also assign pre-work.
  • “Birds of a Feather” sessions are designed to encourage discussions around ideas like safeguarding research, communicating IT changes, and preparing for future student technology needs. Facilitators will provide instruction, keep sessions on track, and capture ideas for future consideration by Michigan IT.
  • We will screen our first-ever feature film, CODE: Debugging the Gender Gap, which will be followed by a panel discussion.

A full agenda and registration details will be announced in mid-October on the Office of the CIO website. This year we will use a registration tool that was showcased in last year’s poster session. We look forward to seeing you there!

Kudos & Campus News

Got some news to share, or know someone who deserves a shout-out? Let us know!

Connecting Kaine

Kudos to the ITS infrastructure engineering, field techs, and operations teams for pulling together outdoor WiFi coverage for Senator Tim Kaine’s appearance on the Diag on Tuesday, September 13. ITS was notified on Sunday, September 11 and had a working solution in place by the morning of the event. Special thanks to Alok Vimawala, Lynn Laskey, Jimmy Helzerman, Sean Murphy, Nick Grundler, Joe Przybylski, and Charlie Lesperance, who worked closely with U-M staff and campaign representatives. “These events... bring national attention to our campus; and nurturing a reputation of the ability to exceed expectations when undertaking near spontaneous, multi-faceted events with leaders and key governmental staff, bodes well for our institution,” said Jim Kosteva, community relations director for the Office of the Vice President of Government Relations. (Photo: Lynn Laskey, ITS Infrastructure)

Privacy primer

The Higher Education Chief Privacy Officers Working Group, co-chaired by U-M Privacy Officer Sol Bermann, has published The Higher Education CPO Primer, Part 1: A Welcome Kit for Chief Privacy Officers in Higher Education. According to EDUCAUSE, which makes the kit available, "The CPO Primer (part one) is intended to provide an overview and introductory body of knowledge to help new CPOs (or those new to higher education) better understand their role and the privacy challenges unique to colleges and universities." Part two of the primer will describe how to create and operationalize a privacy program in higher education.


September 14 marked the launch of a new, unified IT organization at the U-M Health System called ​Health Information Technology & Services (HITS). The group combines the best aspects of two IT and services teams—Medical Center Information Technology (MCIT) and Medical School Information Services (MSIS)—and has been designed to be comprehensive and flexible to support the needs of the entire Health System. As HITS takes shape, its leaders are focusing on a number of initiatives to improve quality, effectiveness, efficiency, and service. This includes bolstering systems related to project intake, demand management, and more transparent systems of work.


A team of computer science professors at U-M are trying to change the way we manage money. Clinc, a startup that was one of the companies to win "Best in Show" at Finovate on September 8, was born out of a research lab, by programmers taking an entirely different approach. “Clinc is a company we created with the mission of taking the best science and technology from academia, from our research lab, and creating real solutions for humans," said founder and CEO Jason Mars, professor of computer science and engineering.

eLearning in Korea

KERIS (Korea Education and Research Information Service) invited Lance E. Sloan (ITS Teaching and Learning) to present on the new Caliper-based learning analytics infrastructure he implemented at U-M. Held in Seoul, South Korea, September 19–23, LASI-Asia 2016 occupied the first two days and the e-Learning Korea 2016 expo the remaining days. Sloan spoke at both events and also gave a live demo of Caliper events being generated by his modifications to Lecture Capture, an application developed by the College of Engineering. Charles Severance, associate professor from the School of Information, gave a keynote at LASI-Asia about his new Tsugi project and joined a panel discussion. He also spoke at the e-Learning Korea 2016 conference and the KERIS booth. “The experience was extremely valuable,” says Sloan. “It gave me the opportunity to introduce learning analytics topics to many people, as well as learn from experts from around the world.” (Photo: Lance E. Sloan)

Canvas conference

A contingent of representatives from the U-M Ann Arbor and Dearborn campuses joined over two thousand attendees from around the world at InstructureCon, the conference for Canvas users and administrators. This year’s conference was held July 18-21 at the Keystone Ski Resort in Keystone, Colorado. John Johnston (ITS), and Alexandra Stark and Diana Perpich (U-M Library) presented sessions. “Participation at these events is a great way for support staff and administrators to learn from their peers at other institutions as well as from Canvas experts,” says Sean DeMonner, executive director of teaching and learning at U-M. “Supporting Canvas, and maximizing its robust feature set, is a key part of our institutional academic technology strategy.”

Fixing Flint's water

The water crisis in Flint highlights a number of serious problems: a public health outbreak, inadequate urban infrastructure, environmental injustice, and political failures. But when it comes to recovery, the central challenge, and one that has received relatively little attention, is the lack of useful information and understanding. A student team at U-M has aggregated a trove of available data around Flint’s water issues, including water test results, records of the service lines that deliver water to homes, information on parcels of land, and water usage. By leveraging new algorithmic and statistical tools, they are able to produce a significantly more complete picture of the risks and challenges in Flint. (Photo: George Thomas/flickr)

Real-time health help

The concept of “just-in-time” inventory and manufacturing has been around since the 1970s. Now, that just-in-time concept is being applied to keep people healthy. Susan Murphy, a professor at the Institute for Social Research, discusses how just-in-time adaptive interventions (JITAI) can bring health support to patients through a smartphone app. JITAI holds enormous potential for adapting mobile phone-delivered interventions to the dynamics of an individual’s emotional, social, physical, and contextual state, so as to prevent negative outcomes and promote the adoption and maintenance of healthy behaviors. JITAIs are being developed and used to support health behavior change in physical activity, eating disorders, alcohol use, mental illness, smoking cessation, weight management, and other chronic disorders.

Home, smart home?

Smart homes offer the promise of improved energy efficiency and control over home security. An integrated smart home platform allows users to easily program multiple devices, such as appliances, cameras, and alarms. But users and developers of such platforms must also take security issues into account. The systems that manage smart homes could leave users helpless in the face of serious threats, such as arson, theft, and extortion. Earlence Fernandes, a PhD student in systems and security, reviews the current research on home security systems and examines potential vulnerabilities.

Heart hack-attack

A U-M team consisting of several leading medical device security researchers and a cardiologist said their own experiments undermine recent allegations of security flaws in certain pacemakers and other implantable medical devices. The team reproduced error messages that were cited as evidence of a successful "crash attack" into a home-monitored implantable heart device. But the messages are the same set of errors that display if the device is not properly plugged in, the researchers said. "We're not saying the (original) report is false; we're saying it's inconclusive because the evidence does not support their conclusions," said Kevin Fu, associate professor of computer science and engineering and director of the Archimedes Center for Medical Device Security.


Online learners interested in educational leadership, social work, and the growing field of user-experience research and design now can earn more comprehensive certification or complete work toward an advanced degree at U-M. In some cases, learners can earn as much as a quarter of the required credit for enrolled master's degrees through three MicroMasters in partnership with the online platform edX. U-M and 13 other universities are launching 19 of the advance MOOC-based study programs on edX. Michigan is offering three MicroMasters: Leading Educational Innovation and Improvement; Social Work: Practice, Policy and Research; and User Experience (UX) Research and Design.

Minority report

Police departments in major US cities have been trying to forestall violent crime by mining data and using algorithms to predict when and where crimes are likely to take place—and who is likely to commit them. "Predictive policing" software is now employed by at least 20 of the country's 50 largest police departments. But advocates of criminal-justice reform say those practices raise major civil-liberties concerns. According to U-M data scientist H.V. Jagadish, the problem with predictive-policing algorithms is that police departments haven't struck the right balance between more efficiently targeting crime and avoiding civil-liberties conflicts—nor have they demonstrated a clear understanding that algorithms suggest probabilities, not certainties.

Students: Work at ITS!

Know any students with IT experience or interest who would like to earn while they learn? ITS is looking for personable U-M students who want to add professional experience while attending classes. As part of our cutting edge technology support team, students will gain experience that commands attention from future prospective employers. Jobs duties could include answering IT questions, servicing computer hardware, supporting printer services, selling computer products, and providing general administrative support.

Facebook blues

What effect does Facebook have on emotional states? Apparently, not a good one for some users. Ethan Kross, the director of the Emotion & Self Control Lab at U-M who has co-authored several papers about Facebook, says a handful of studies have established links between passive Facebook use and envy or other negative mental states. Other studies that Kross and his team published in 2015 managed to isolate envy as the culprit in bumming people out, as opposed to other characteristics like the number of "friends" a user has or self-esteem. "Passive Facebook use predicted envy, and envy predicted declines in affective well-being," the researchers concluded.

Yo, Yottabyte!

A strategic partnership between U-M and software company Yottabyte promises to unleash a new wave of data-intensive research by providing a flexible computing cloud for complex computational analyses of sensitive and restricted data. The Yottabyte Research Cloud will provide scientists high-performance, secure, and flexible computing environments that enable the analysis of sensitive data sets restricted by federal privacy laws, proprietary access agreements, or confidentiality requirements. Previously, the complexity of building secure and project-specific IT platforms often made the computational analysis of sensitive data prohibitively costly and time consuming.

Google for sound

The tech start-up Deepgram uses AI to recognize speech, search for moments, and categorize audio and video by using deep learning to index audio and make it searchable. The company was founded by U-M student Noah Shutty and his lab supervisor Scott Stephenson. Both have backgrounds in dark matter particle physics and math. Much as the Google search engine uses links between different web sites to surface the most relevant search results, their software uses connections between certain phrases in audio files to identify the type files and yield relevant results. This audio search technology is much different from others that rely on natural language processing, according to the founders.

Sweet data suite

The Library is launching a suite of services as well as a repository that will support researchers throughout all phases of the research data lifecycle. Research Data Services is a network of tools and subject matter experts. "Our subject specialist librarians bring their discipline-specific expertise to the data-management issues of the researchers in their areas," says Elaine Westbrooks, associate university librarian for research. Deep Blue Data is an expansion of Deep Blue, U-M’s institutional repository which was established in 2006 and currently holds more than 110,000 deposits. Deep Blue Data offers a new platform specialized for datasets that enables U-M researchers to meet data-sharing mandates and achieve their goals of making their research datasets more readily available to colleagues and peers throughout the world.

Training & Events

Contact us to get your event listed.

Community of Practice meetings

Visit the Communities of Practice page for more information and to subscribe to the CoP calendar.

  • Agile Development: Tuesday, October 18; 3:30–4:30 p.m.; location TBD.
  • Contact Centers: Thursday, October 20; 1–2:30 p.m.; 2001 LSA Building. More info.
  • Data Integration: Monday, October 24; 9–11 a.m.; Arbor Lakes Building 3, South Dome.

Tech Talks

Fridays; 11 a.m.–noon; Computer Showcase, Michigan Union. Computer Showcase hosts a regular series of free workshops designed to help you discover new tech and make the most of the tech you already have. Check out the upcoming series of talks focused on security:

  • October 7: Mobile Device Security. Mobile devices are often used to access or store personal and private information. Join us for a hands-on demo of how to properly secure and manage your mobile devices to protect your personal information. We’ll discuss what could possibly go wrong, what you can do about it, what you are responsible for, and where to get help.
  • October 14: Phishing & Suspicious Email. Criminals can use phishing, spam, and other malicious email to gain access to your personal and financial information, as well as sensitive university information and access to U-M resources. Learn why phishing email scams matter, what to watch for, and what to do if you think you’ve been a target.
  • October 21 & 28: Turn On Two-Factor. Your password needs a partner! Learn how to stop hackers in their tracks with two-factor authentication. We’ll focus on how the mobile app from Duo Security makes it easy and offer alternative options to fit your lifestyle.

IT security training

Michigan IT staff have asked for IT security training. And implementation of the U-M's new information assurance program, as outlined in the proposed new IT Security Policy, depends on knowledgeable staff. IIA has purchased a limited number of seats in several Merit training courses throughout the 2016-17 academic year. The courses will cover cyber security for executives, cyber security for technical staff, secure coding, secure web application engineering, and more. Staff members from the U-M Ann Arbor, Health System, Flint, and Dearborn campuses will be invited to attend. Watch for more information in the coming months as course dates and locations are finalized.

Free Gartner webinars

Gartner, Inc., one of the world's leading information technology research and advisory companies, is offering an extensive list of over 25 live webinars and on-demand videos at no charge through the month of October. Subjects include the Internet of Things (IoT), big data, cloud computing, security, risk assessment, portfolio management, budgeting, and many others.

Going Live with BlueJeans

Monday, October 3; 3-4:30 p.m.; Friday, October 21; 10-11:30 a.m.; Wednesday, November 2; 3–4:30 p.m.; 2001B, Mac Lab, Modern Languages Building. This hands-on workshop provides a quick-start introduction to the BlueJeans Network service for live two-way connections. Bring guest speakers into your classroom. Teach your class remotely when you are on the road. Construct public events with audiences of thousands of people. Create recordings with the touch of a button. Arrange interviews, classes, and special events without regard to the locations of the participants. Connect yourself or your students with places and experiences you and they cannot otherwise access. Join us and learn how to create and manage live connections with this great high-quality service.

AWS training

Tuesday, October 4; 9 a.m–4 p.m.; Advanced Training Lab 2, 3rd floor, Duderstadt Center. M Cloud AWS and the College of Engineering are offering AWS training. Seats are limited. If you are interested in hosting a similar training event in the future please let us know. For details and to register please visit our signup page and select the sessions you’d like to attend. If you have any questions, please contact the ITS Help Desk.

Managing Your Stuff! How to Organize, Store and Access your Scholarly Resources

Wednesday, October 5; 4–5 p.m.; Scholarspace (formerly The Faculty Exploratory), 206 Hatcher Graduate Library. Canvas, the new Learning Management System that will replace CTools course sites in fall 2016, offers instructors several ways to present their courses. Learn more about the syllabus, pages, and modules features in this demonstration session. More info and register.

Data-Driven Performance Analytics at NYU Langone Medical Center

Thursday, October 6; 2–3 p.m.; online. A key challenge confronting NYU Langone was duplicative, uncorrelated data, extracted from multiple systems that inhibited "a single version of the truth" for executive decision-making. An enterprise data warehouse and executive dashboards were implemented late 2009, and the need for analytics has grown considerably. To keep up with demand, IT needed a way to reduce turnaround times, using less IT resources while providing more feature-rich analytics. In this webinar, you’ll learn how NYU made the move to visual analytics, how the organization changed its culture to be metrics-driven, and the big performance improvements that followed. This free webinar is sponsored by Tableau. Get more info and register.

Introduction to the Flux cluster and batch computing

October 7, 13, 14; 1–4:30 p.m.; B254 East Hall. This workshop will provide a brief overview of the components of the Flux cluster. The main body of the workshop will cover the resource manager and scheduler, creating submissions scripts to run jobs and the options available in them, and hands-on experience. By the end of the workshop, every participant should have created a submission script, submitted a job, tracked its progress, and collected its output. Participants will have several working examples from which to build their own submissions scripts in their own home directories. Course preparation required. Get more info and register.

UM3D Lab Open House

Friday, October 7; noon–6 p.m.; Duderstadt Center (Media Union), First Floor Collaboration Area. Curious about new technologies, or have a project in mind but not sure where to start? The UM3D Lab Fall Open House will feature demonstrations of Virtual Reality, Rapid Prototyping, Motion Capture, 3D Capturing, Mobile Development, Animations, and more. Join us to see all of the amazing technology and services available to you through the Library. For more information, visit the UM3D Lab website.

MWALLT Conference

Saturday, October 8; 8 a.m.–5 p.m.; Language Resource Center, 1500 North Quad. Join us for a Midwest Association of Language Learning Technology one-day conference to learn more about language instruction, lab administration, and technology integration. Registration is $60 ($30 for MWALLT members). Scholarships are available through the LRC for students. More info and register.

#micities 2016

Saturday, October 8; 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m.; Palmer Commons. The #micities conference is a discussion on how information technology is impacting community engagement, planning, and citizenship in Michigan cities and beyond. The conference will include lightning talks, and breakout sessions highlighting civic technology initiatives across Michigan. The conference keynote will be given by Dr. Anthony Townsend, author of the 2013 book Smart Cities: Big Data, Civic Hackers, and the Quest for a New Utopia. This one-day conference is aimed at students, faculty, practitioners, and citizens interested in applying new information tools and methods in their communities. The event is co-hosted by the U-M School of Information and the Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning.

Lecture on Academic and Intellectual Freedom

Thursday, October 13; 4 p.m.; Honigman Auditorium, Law School. What happens when information you want kept private is available online? Should you have the right to compel online sources to remove that information, even if it is accurate? This controversial issue involves privacy and freedom of expression, which are important when it comes to the information age, says Marc Rotenberg, president and executive director of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, a public interest research institute in Washington, D.C. His lecture, "The Misunderstood Right to Be Forgotten: The Future of Free Expression and Privacy in the Online World," is free and open to the public.

Claude E. Shannon Centennial Celebration

October 13, 24, 27; 4 p.m.; 1005 EECS. U-M is celebrating the 100th birthday of Claude E. Shannon, widely recognized as the father of information theory. A biweekly Shannon Centennial Lecture Series will be held in the Rackham Amphitheater during the fall 2016 semester.

IT4U67: HR Job Code Changes in the U-M Data Warehouse

Monday, October 17; 9-9:45 a.m.; online. UHR is adding 1700 dual job codes to the Human Resource data set as part of upcoming Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) regulatory changes. Denise Stegall (UHR) demonstrates the impact of this change and how to modify your reports. If you use BusinessObjects or another tool to access the HR data set, this session is for you! Register in My LINC. For a complete list of webinar recordings, see the IT4U web page. All captioned recordings are on our YouTube playlist.


Thursday, October 20; 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m.; Rackham Auditorium. Mark your calendar for the 12th annual cyber security conference. This free, one day conference presents a rare opportunity to hear nationally recognized experts discuss the latest cyber security trends and threats. This year’s presentations include: “Hacking & Securing the Internet of Things,” “Security in Tree City,” and “Security and Privacy in an Age of Terrorism.” See the agenda and register.

Dissonance Lecture Series

  • Privacy, Cybersecurity, the Internet, and the Stakes in This Year’s Election. Thursday, October 27; 5:15 p.m.; Anderson A, B, and C, Michigan Union. Peter Swire has been a leading privacy and cyberlaw scholar, government leader, and practitioner since the rise of the Internet in the 1990s. In 2013, he became the Nancy J. and Lawrence P. Huang Professor of Law and Ethics at the Georgia institute of Technology. Swire teaches in the Scheller College of Business, with appointments by courtesy with the College of Computing and School of Public Policy. He is senior counsel with the law firm of Alston & Bird LLP and has served under Presidents Obama and Clinton. More info.
  • Disrupting Democracy: How Technology is Influencing Elections: Tuesday, November 1; 6:30-7:30 p.m.; Michigan League Ballroom. Panelists: Alex Halderman, Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, College of Engineering and Walter Mebane, Professor of Political Science, Professor of Statistics, College of LSA and Faculty Associate, Center for Political Studies, Institute for Social Research. More info.

Social Media in Political Branding

Monday, October 31, 4–5:30 p.m.; 1014 Tisch Hall. Social media is increasingly central to political communication with the citizenry. In over 30 low- and middle-income countries, both the head of government and primary opposition leader have significant social media campaigns, despite internet access and social media still widely outside the reach of the vast majority of the voting population. In this talk, Joyojeet Pal of the U-M School of Information explores the factors that make social media an attractive form of outreach for political leaders, examining the case of one of the most successful social media campaigns—that of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. More info.

Ann Arbor Data Dive

Saturday, November 12; 9 a.m–4 p.m.; North Quad. The Ann Arbor Data Dive is a collaborative, student-run community event, in which selected organizations present a problem they are facing, along with supporting data, to a community of data scientists and students volunteering their time and skills to create a data-based solution. The volunteer participants work on analyzing and visualizing the data to provide the organization with a better understanding of the problem they are facing. The vision of Data Dive is to help high impact non-profit organizations with their data needs by providing an environment where data science professionals and students can collaborate.

MIDAS Annual Symposium

Tuesday, November 15; Rackham Building & Wednesday, November 16; Michigan League. Please join us for the Michigan Institute for Data Science Annual Symposium, “Big Data: Advancing Science, Changing the World.” The symposium will feature preeminent data scientists from around the world, and will highlight U-M researchers whose work is on the leading edge of innovation and discovery in data-intensive science. The symposium will also feature a student poster session, and opportunities for students to meet with potential employers interested in data scientists. If you know of any students who might be interested in these events, please let them know. More info and registration.

Michigan IT Symposium

Monday, November 21 & Tuesday, November 22; Michigan League. The 2016 Michigan IT Symposium will include nearly 30 presentations and 60 posters on topics including big data, diversity, professional development, and research. The committee also added new features this year: hands-on training sessions on topics including Hadoop, Docker, and Tableau; “Birds of a Feather” sessions to encourage discussions around ideas like safeguarding research; communicating IT changes; and preparing for future student technology needs. Full agenda and registration details will be announced in mid-October on the Office of the CIO website. Read the preview article in this issue.

Safe Computing

Turn on two-factor for your personal accounts

Strong passwords are essential, but they aren't enough to protect your personal accounts and information. Phishing attacks and data breaches put your passwords at risk, and you need better security.

To protect you, many popular services and websites now offer two-factor authentication. With two-factor, anyone trying to access your account must provide two proofs of ID:

  1. Something you know. In most cases, this is your password.
  2. Something you have, such as a passcode, a phone, or even a mobile app.

To learn about adding two-factor protection to your personal accounts, refer to Two Factor Auth (2FA). This resource includes lists of websites and indicates which offer two-factor protection. It also provides links to instructions for turning on two-factor where it is available.

The university already protects many of its systems with two-factor authentication by Duo Security. The Duo Mobile App can also be used with many personal accounts, including Facebook and Snapchat. Websites that work with an authenticator app will display a QR code that can be scanned by the Duo Mobile App. If a service mentions Google Authenticator, the Duo Mobile App can be used in its place.

Change your passwords regularly

Has it been awhile since you changed your password? More than six months? It's time to change your password! We recommend that you change your UMICH (Level-1) password every six months. Having a strong, fresh password in conjunction with two-factor authentication provides good protection for your U-M account and all your information in the services you access with it. If your password is at risk, you may need to change it more often. See the Password Security Checklist for details. Remember to change your passwords for personal accounts regularly as well, and use a unique password for each service.

Project Updates

Working on a project you'd like share with the Michigan IT community? Let us know!

U-M completes transition to Canvas

Following two years of preparation, this semester marks the completion of U-M’s transition to Canvas. About 41,600 U-M students are using Canvas in nearly 5,100 courses. “A change like this is incredibly impactful for campus – it touches nearly every student and faculty member, with very few exceptions,” said Sean DeMonner, ITS executive director of teaching and learning. “Moving to Canvas required the support and effort from many individuals across our campus. I appreciate the strong partnerships we built, and I thank everyone for going on the journey with us.” The efforts of dedicated Michigan IT staff are paying off. Since the initial Canvas pilot in fall 2014:

  • 10,000 courses have used Canvas
  • 225 one-on-one consultations were completed by the Canvas Crew
  • 1,500 Convert2Canvas requests were processed
  • 265 Canvas workshops were attended by nearly 2,000 people, in addition to many unit-specific workshops

DNS re-address project

In an effort to further secure and reduce the complexity of U-M networks, ITS has begun working with units to change the IP addresses of U-M’s DNS resolver servers from public to private IP’s. The project scope includes all systems on the U-M Ann Arbor campus configured to use the current nine (9) DNS resolver addresses. This project has been presented to Unit IT Representatives and IT Commons. Congratulations to the School of Dentistry for being the first school/unit to convert their systems to the new private IP addresses. Read the project overview for more information.

IQ releases LARC, learning analytics data

On September 27, Information Quest (IQ) released the Learning Analytics Data Architecture (LARC) data set. LARC, the result of a two year long partnership with many units on campus, collects student portraits for nearly 300,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students who have attended U-M over the past 20 years. Student portraits include demographic and biographic information, application information, programs of study, classes and outcomes, and more. LARC is designed for learning analytics research and is expected to draw interest from many diverse areas around campus. The majority of data is governed by the Registrar's Office through standard data stewardship processes. To request access, submit an OARS request. As with any other data requests, Unit Liaisons will be asked to approve the validity of requests before they progress to ITS and university-level data stewards for official review. Contact the ITS Service Center for more information.

Delivering a better AWS experience

Aside from limited consulting, the current M Cloud AWS (Amazon Web Services) offering leaves the management of the service to the end user, which has been a barrier to adoption for some. There is also very little ability to report on usage and state across university assets. The M Cloud AWS Integrate project will focus on providing "value add" foundational connectivity, management, security, reporting, etc. It will integrate with campus resources, as well as make some more resilient. We encourage feedback from around campus on the project. The first tab of this worksheet provides more details about the project and the second tab contains the target scope for version 1 of M Cloud AWS Integrate. Feel free to comment directly in this document or send your feedback to mcloudawsintegrate@umich.edu.

WiFi upgrades

It has been a very busy fall so far for the WiFi project team, with many buildings completed across campus. Check out our progress! Visit the project website for additional information.

  • Recently completed: Earl V. Moore Building, North Quad Academic Complex, School of Education, Joan & Sanford Weill Hall (Ford School), Sandford Lipsey Student Publications Building, Northwood Community Center
  • Currently under construction: Francis Thomas Jr. Public Health (SPH II), Gorguze Family Laboratory, Lane Hall, Burton Tower, Perry Building, U-M Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI), 300 North Ingalls Building, Life Science Institute, Blau
  • Network design underway: East Hall, West Hall, GG Brown,, North Quad (Residence Hall), Betsy Barbour, Newberry, Randall Labs,, Northwood Community Center
  • Site surveys scheduled/completed: Walgreen Theatre, Stamps Auditorium, Dental School, Argus II

Service Updates

If your unit or group provides an IT service to campus, this space is available for short news items and updates to the Michigan IT community. Send us your information.

AIS renamed Enterprise Application Services

ITS Application and Information Services (AIS) has changed its name to Enterprise Application Services (EAS). The function of the group will remain the same, which includes the management and support of the following systems: eResearch (Proposal Management, Regulatory Management, eRAM, M-Inform), Wolverine Access/MPathways Human Resource Management System, Wolverine Access/MPathways Financials & Physical Resources System, Wolverine Access/MPathways Student Administration, DART (Development & Alumni Relationship Tool), Imaging, My LINC learning management system, M-Compass, Blackboard Emergency Alerts, Michigan App (Mobile), and Wolverine Access Gateway. If you have questions, contact the EAS lead team.

Accessibility report for M Cloud AWS

The ITS Assistive Technology department has collaborated with the M Cloud team to perform screen reader testing of the Amazon Web Services command line client. A command line client allows a user to interact with the computer via text as opposed to a point and click interface. We tested client functionality for the Amazon file storage service as well as setting up a Linux and Windows server. No major issues were found while testing with screen reader software, which provides computer access to blind individuals via speech. As a result of the Amazon software being compatible with screen reader programs, it is possible for blind computer users to independently use the AWS cloud services. This software will become increasingly important to students, faculty, and staff as the need for cloud file storage and server hosting becomes more prevalent.

BlueJeans for Canvas now available

New for the fall term, BlueJeans conferencing service is now integrated in all Canvas courses. The service offers video, audio, and content sharing to U-M units who opted into the campus contract. Faculty, staff, and students may wish to use BlueJeans for Canvas to schedule study groups, invite remotely located guests, record lectures, co-teach with distant classrooms, and more. Before using this feature, faculty should visit the Canvas Instructor Guide page to learn how to enable BlueJeans within their courses. Learn more about Using BlueJeans in Canvas on the ITS website, including a list of Common Tasks and Frequently Asked Questions.

New ITS doc system

ITS documentation formerly located at itcs.umich.edu/itcsdocs has been moved to the new ITS Documentation site. Documents are designed to work well across multiple devices and screen sizes. Please note two main changes:

  • Doc numbers are gone: Numbers like R1162 or S4316 at the end of document titles have been removed—you can no longer search for documents by number. We've heard that most users don't find them helpful. The new system groups documents into service categories.
  • Update links for new URLs: Redirection from old to new docs is in place until May 1, 2017. Be sure to update links in internal documentation, knowledge base articles, automated system messages, printed materials, etc. before then.

Safe Computing website redesign

Check out the new Safe Computing website! It has been completely redesigned to work well across multiple devices and screen sizes. It has a new architecture based on user interviews to help you navigate and find information quickly. The home URL—safecomputing.umich.edu—remains as is, but all other URLs within the site have changed. Redirects from the old URLs will be in place through May 1, 2017. Please update any links you have to pages on Safe Computing before then. The new site uses the https protocol, which adds a layer of security for users. This helps prevent others from reading or forging the contents of communications between the user and site. It also means all Safe Computing URLs begin with https. Users don't need to enter the https; it will be added automatically. Use of https for the site does not require users to log in.

Ransomware education brochures available

Would you like to help people in your unit learn how to protect themselves from ransomware? Ransomware is malicious software that can infect and encrypt your computer and its files, as well as other devices. ITS Information and Infrastructure Assurance (IIA) has put the information from Safe Computing: Don't Pay the Ransom into a 4-1/4 X 3-1/2-inch printed brochure you can distribute within your unit. Request copies from iiainform@umich.edu.

MiChart upgrade set for October

The upgrade to MiChart is part of the go-live rollout planned for Saturday, October 8. The upgrade will affect all MiChart users and is intended to enhance overall look and feel, customizability and usability of the electronic health record, and will include several other improvements. MiChart has been a primary tool for improving patient safety, healthcare quality and efficiency, and increasing collaboration between patients and their providers. MiChart’s successful implementation through a course of phased upgrades and staged rollouts has helped UMHS meet overall goals for medical innovation, remain competitive, and gain recognition as one of the Most Wired healthcare institutions.

Tableau 10 non-production server

ITS has created a Tableau 10 non-production server for you to utilize and test. The address is https://tableaunpv10.dsc.umich.edu/. This server will be for testing purposes only. You should be able to publish from desktop version 9.3 or 10. If you have 9.3, you can also install Tableau 10 at the same time. Note: Desktop 9.3 can publish to server version 10, but desktop version 10 can NOT publish to server version 9.3. This Tableau 10 server will be removed when the non-production server is migrated to version 10, which is currently slated for October 14. Production is scheduled to upgrade to version 10 on October 29. Please email 4help@umich.edu if you have any questions, concerns, or troubles using the Tableau 10 testing server.

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