Announcements Archive - 2016

  • Sign up to receive official Ferris State University emergency text alerts so you are the first to know about time-sensitive campus safety issues and closings due to weather or other disruptions.

    • Enrollment is voluntary.
    • You will be unenrolled automatically after you leave the University.
    • Messages will be customized based on what campuses you take classes/work at.
    • Restricted use for immediate notification to students, faculty and staff.
    • Short Message Service (SMS) text messaging must be enabled on your cell phone account to receive text messages.
    • You are responsible for any text message charges that may be incurred from enrolling in this service. The average cost is 15 cents per message, depending on your plan and provider.
    • You will receive a test text message once a semester, as a confirmation.
    • Contact information you provide is kept confidential and won’t be used for any other purpose.

    Visit MyFSU and click on the link in the "Emergency Text Alerts" channel to sign up.

    View FAQs about Ferris Emergency Text Alerts [pdf]

    For step-by-step instructions on how to set up Emergency Text Alerts, see the links below.

    Student Instructions [pdf]
    Employee Instructions [pdf]

     

  • To keep our IT systems up and running, it is necessary to apply patches, install upgrades, and perform equipment maintenance. We scheduled one or two Thursday nights a month, starting at 10pm, to do most of this work. Other Thursday nights may be used if the work cannot wait. All systems should be functioning by 6am Friday morning, if not earlier.

    However, if a vital network system is not working well, we may need to take it out of service to repair it outside of regular time. We will let you know of planned system work and status via announcements on the MyFSU login page, in Blackboard, on MyTechSupport News, and/or through email.

    The following is a list of all scheduled days for maintenance nights.

    April 7

    Emergency MyFSU Maintenance

    Tonight on Thursday, April 7, 2016, MyFSU will be taken down for a short period of time for emergency maintenance. MyFSU will be taken down at 10pm and the outage will last for about a half hour; however, it may take longer. We will have everything working by 6 AM.

    If you have any problems with the services in the morning, first reboot your computer and log in to the network again. If you still are having problems with a system, please contact the TAC at 231-591-4822, or toll free at 877-779-4822.

    April 21

    ITS Planned Maintenance

    On Thursday, April 21, 2016 the following will be worked on. The end times listed are estimates of when we believe service will be restored; however, it may take longer. We will have everything working by 6 AM.

    Starting at 10 PM and ending about 12 AM

    • AIM - Physical Plant Work Orders
    • Kronos - time clock system
    • Food Pro
    • WebFOCUS

    Student Printing (Equitrac)
    If you have any problems with the services in the morning, first reboot your computer and log in to the network again. If you still are having problems with a system, please contact the TAC at 231-591-4822, or toll free at 877-779-4822.

    May 26

    ITS Planned Maintenance

    On Thursday, May 26, 2016 the following will be worked on. The end times listed are estimates of when we believe service will be restored; however, it may take longer. We will have everything working by 6 AM.

    Starting at 10 PM and ending about 12 AM

    • T2 - ticketing system
    • Millenium - alumni system
    • Adirondack - housing system

    Starting at 10 PM and ending about 2 AM

    • AIM - Physical Plant Work Orders
    • Kronos - time clock system

    Starting at 10 PM and ending about 6 AM

    • Banner
    • MyFSU
    • Student, Faculty, and Employee services in MyFSU 

    If you have any problems with the services in the morning, first reboot your computer and log in to the network again. If you still are having problems with a system, please contact the TAC at 231-591-4822, or toll free at 877-779-4822.

    June 9

    ITS Planned Maintenance

    On Thursday, June 9, 2016 the following systems and/or services will be worked on during our bi-weekly maintenance time period. The end times listed are estimates of when we believe service will be restored, however, it may take longer if required to finish the work. We will work diligently to have all systems and/or services restored by 6 AM Friday morning.

    Starting at 10 PM and ending about 6 AM

    • Blackboard (LMS)

    If you have any problems with the listed systems and/or services in the morning following maintenance night, please first reboot your computer and log into the network again. If you are still having problems after the reboot, please contact the Technology Assistance Center.

    Thank you for your patience and understanding.

    Nathan Wallace
    Ferris Information Technology Services
    Technology Assistance Center
    [email protected]
    231-591-4822 or 877-779-4822

    June 23

    ITS Planned Maintenance

    On Thursday, June 23, 2016, the following systems and/or services will be worked on during our monthly maintenance time period. The end times listed are estimates of when we believe service will be restored, however, it may take longer if required to finish the work. We will work diligently to have all systems and/or services restored by 6 AM Friday morning.

    Starting at 10 PM and ending about 6 AM

    • Eyecare
    • What's Up
    • Symantec End Point Database
    • TAC Imaging
    • EAS Inventory

    If you have any problems with the listed systems and/or services in the morning following maintenance night, please first reboot your computer and log into the network again. If you are still having problems after the reboot, please contact the Technology Assistance Center.

    Thank you for your patience and understanding.

    Nathan Wallace
    Ferris Information Technology Services
    Technology Assistance Center
    [email protected]
    231-591-4822 or 877-779-4822

    July 7

    ITS Planned Maintenance

    On Thursday, July 7, 2016, the following systems and/or services will be worked on during our monthly maintenance time period. The end times listed are estimates of when we believe service will be restored, however, it may take longer if required to finish the work. We will work diligently to have all systems and/or services restored by 6 AM Friday morning.

    Starting at 10 PM and ending about 6 AM

    • Blackboard

    If you have any problems with the listed systems and/or services in the morning following maintenance night, please first reboot your computer and log into the network again. If you are still having problems after the reboot, please contact the Technology Assistance Center.

    Thank you for your patience and understanding.

    Nathan Wallace
    Ferris Information Technology Services
    Technology Assistance Center
    [email protected]
    231-591-4822 or 877-779-4822

    July 28

    ITS Planned Maintenance

    On Thursday, July 28, 2016, the following systems and/or services will be worked on during our monthly maintenance time period. We will work diligently to have all systems and/or services restored by 6 AM Friday morning.

    Starting at 10 PM and ending about 6 AM

    • Banner
    • MyFSU
    • Blackboard

    If you have any problems with the listed systems and/or services in the morning following maintenance night, please first reboot your computer and log into the network again. If you are still having problems after the reboot, please contact the Technology Assistance Center.

    Thank you for your patience and understanding. 

    Nathan Wallace
    Ferris Information Technology Services
    Technology Assistance Center
    [email protected]
    231-591-4822 or 877-779-4822

    August 11

    ITS Planned Maintenance

    On Thursday, August 11, 2016, the following systems and/or services will be worked on during our monthly maintenance time period. The end times listed are estimates of when we believe service will be restored, however, it may take longer if required to finish the work. We will work diligently to have all systems and/or services restored by 6 AM Friday morning.

    Starting at 10 PM and ending about 6 AM

    • Blackboard

    If you have any problems with the listed systems and/or services in the morning following maintenance night, please first reboot your computer and log into the network again. If you are still having problems after the reboot, please contact the Technology Assistance Center. 

    Thank you for your patience and understanding.

    Nathan Wallace
    Ferris Information Technology Services
    Technology Assistance Center
    [email protected]
    231-591-4822 or 877-779-4822

    August 22

    ITS Planned Maintenance

    On Monday, August 22, 2016, the following systems and/or services will be worked on during our monthly maintenance time period. We will work diligently to have all systems and/or services restored by 6 AM Friday morning.

    Starting at 10 PM and ending about 6 AM

    • Banner
    • Kronos

    If you have any problems with the listed systems and/or services in the morning following maintenance night, please first reboot your computer and log into the network again. If you are still having problems after the reboot, please contact the Technology Assistance Center. 

    Thank you for your patience and understanding.

    Nathan Wallace
    Ferris Information Technology Services
    Technology Assistance Center
    [email protected]
    231-591-4822 or 877-779-4822

    September 8

    ITS Planned Maintenance

    On Thursday, September 8, 2016, the following systems and/or services will be worked on during our monthly maintenance time period. We will work diligently to have all systems and/or services restored by 6 AM Friday morning.

    Starting at 10 PM and ending about 6 AM

    • Banner
    • Blackboard

    If you have any problems with the listed systems and/or services in the morning following maintenance night, please first reboot your computer and log into the network again. If you are still having problems after the reboot, please contact the Technology Assistance Center. 

    Thank you for your patience and understanding.

    Nathan Wallace
    Ferris Information Technology Services
    Technology Assistance Center
    [email protected]
    231-591-4822 or 877-779-4822

    In addition, Banner services are usually unavailable at the end of the month for processing of business records.

     

    More Information - Banner Outages for Month End Processing

    The Banner system is our record keeping system for financial, student, and human resources information. The system needs to be taken offline at month's end, in accordance with standard financial practices, to reconcile files and prepare for the next month. This outage is usually on the evening of the last business day of the month. However, if the last day of the month is on a Saturday or Sunday, the month end processing outage will be on Friday night.

    When Banner is offline, Student Services such as registration, looking up course schedules and unofficial transcripts are not accessible. Employee Services, such as looking at pay stubs and benefits would also be unavailable. Faculty will not be able to submit grades or grade changes, look up student information, or view their teaching schedule.

    We will post a reminder in our news and announcements channel and put a notice on the MyFSU login page when Banner will be unavailable. Note that this is in addition to our normal monthly maintenance night one Thursday a month.

    We apologize for any inconvenience this causes you.

     

    **After reviewing network usage, we found that Thursday nights, from 10pm to 6am, are low usage times. In addition, the technicians doing the work will be able to contact our vendors during their standard business hours the next day if needed.

  • Information Technology Services has replaced our former ticket/work order system with a much more up-to-date and user-friendly service management system from Cherwell Software. Via e-mails, this new system will facilitate better communication about the status of your requests for help regarding technology. The e-mails you will receive coincide with the three stages of your work order:

    1. Ticket Creation
      When you contact ITS or TAC about a technology issue, a ticket will be created. For your reference, an e-mail will be sent to you with basic information.

    2. Resolution

      When the ITS or TAC staff believe that your issue has been resolved, you will receive another e-mail that includes the original incident description and the current resolution description. Also included in this e-mail are two links: Ticket Not Completely Resolved and Ticket Completely Resolved. Please click on the appropriate link to let us know whether you agree, disagree, and/or understand the stated resolution description.

      If we do not hear from you within three business days of the “Resolution” e-mail, we will assume all issues have been resolved satisfactorily. So please, if you feel that your issue is not fixed, or you do not agree with the stated resolution description from the technicians, respond as soon as possible by clicking the Ticket Not Completely Resolved link. This will generate a new e-mail where you can update the information as to why the issue is not resolved. The e-mail will be sent back to ITS, where we can determine the next step.

    3. Survey Opportunity
      Once you agree that the ticket has been resolved, or after the three-day waiting period has passed, the ticket will be closed. We will then send you a brief, five-question survey opportunity for you to rate the support you received related to that particular ticket.
  • We have had many reports about the following e-mails.

    If you received an email like the one below, it is not from Ferris' IT Services. Please right click on it and Mark as Junk if you have it in your email inbox.

    If you did click on the link in the message, please contact the TAC.

    From: University E-Mail Administrators
    Date: Tuesday, September 15, 2015 at 8:38 AM
    Subject: E-Mail Validation Alert!

    Hello

    This E-mail is to notify the students of Ferris State University that we would be performing scheduled maintenance on your E-mail account. During this time, your account will not be accessible from your computer or mobile phone. 

    We apologize for any inconvenience that this causes and appreciate your patience while we work to improve our service.

    Click ( HERE ) and fill the form in order to keep your account active after the validation exercise.

    Failure to do this will lead to a closure of this account.

    NB:
    Please do not disregard this email upon receipt.

    Thank you,
    Mail Administrators,
    IT Desk

    From: Ferris State University [mailto:[email protected] ferris.edu]
    Sent: Wednesday, September 16, 2015 7:08 AM
    To: Recipients <[email protected] ferris.edu>
    Subject: Ferris State University Account® Alert

    Dear User,

    Recently, we are performing an emergency mail maintenance on our email network.

    Your account is one of the most essential account to be upgraded

    We therefore, implore you to follow our secure site https://www.ferris.edu/ to upgrade your account

    Thank you,

    Ferris State University Technical Service

    From: Nor Amin Ahmad [mailto:[email protected] usm.my]
    Sent: Tuesday, September 15, 2015 8:18 AM
    To: Azliza Ahmad <[email protected] usm.my>
    Subject: IT helpdesk

    Your password will expire in the next TWO {2} days current Staff should please log on to IT WEBSITE to validate your e-mail Address.

    If you clicked on the links in either of these messages, let the TAC know at one of the numbers below. 

    Be sure to check out (and perhaps keep the link for reference) this handy sheet that helps you identify spam mail. Identifying Spam Emails.

  • In an effort to educate our University community, Information Technology Services (ITS) wants to make you aware of the different types of phishing schemes that can adversely affect your electronic devices or potentially expose your personally identifiable information.

    Phishing is an attempt by a person posing as a trustworthy entity in electronic communication to acquire information such as usernames, passwords and credit card details and, in some cases, money.

    The Torch recently experienced a type of phishing incident on its website. The Torch staff is working with its vendor to remediate this issue. The Torch website is hosted independent of the www.ferris.edu and MyFSU websites. However, as a precaution, University Advancement and Marketing, in consultation with ITS, has temporarily removed all links to the Torch’s website from www.ferris.edu pages until the issues are resolved.

    If you visited the Torch’s website, saw a pop up message that said your browser was out of date, and you allowed it to update your computer, you most likely had some malware installed that could allow for the compromise of your device and possibly data on it.

    If you did this on a University computer, please contact the Technology Assistance Center so your device can be cleaned of the malware. If you clicked on the pop up using a personally-owned device, please bring your computer to Technology Services in the University Center for help to remove the malware. There may be a fee for this service.

    If you have any questions or concerns, call the Technology Assistance Center (TAC) at (231) 591-4822 or toll free at (877) 779-4822.

    Here are some good tips for how to stay secure when browsing with your computer or other devices:

    • Think before you click. If you receive a suspicious email or browser screen pop ups, don’t click the links in the email or open file attachments from anything but 100-percent trusted sources. When in doubt, throw it out.
    • Check the URL. Get in the habit of looking at the address line. Does the address line display something different like "hxxp://www.gotyouscammed.com/login.htm?" Be aware of where you are going.
    • Test Web links. VirusTotal is a free service that analyzes suspicious files and URLs and facilitates the quick detection of viruses, worms, Trojans and all kinds of malware.
    • Always go direct. The best thing you can do to avoid phishing scams is always go directly to the website you want to visit rather than clicking a link. Make it a habit to manually enter the address of any banking, shopping, auction or financial transaction website yourself and not depend on displayed links or links in email.
    • Make sure all your browsers are up to date.
    • Make sure your browser plug-ins are up to date. A free and great resource to check your browser’s plug-ins is the Browser Check from Qualys.
    • Utilize your browser's built-in tools. Most browsers come with some phishing protection built in to help protect you, but it isn't always enabled by default.

    Thank you,

    Ferris Information Technology Services

  • With tax filing season well underway, scammers who specialize in tax refund fraud have a new trick up their sleeves, spoofing. This usually entails the scammer impersonating a high-ranking authority by using a seemingly valid email, and asking employee W-2 information. Although we have no known cases of this happening here, it has happened elsewhere recently.

    That is why we must be extra cautious when replying to emails that are asking for sensitive information. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

    • Exercise caution when opening emails and attachments even if they appear to be from a @ferris.edu email address or someone you know.
    • If you are unsure whether an email request is legitimate, verify it by contacting the company or person directly. Do not use contact information provided in the email or on a website connected to the request.
    • Be suspicious of unsolicited phone calls, visits, or email messages from individuals asking about employees or other internal information. If an unknown individual claims to be from a legitimate organization, try to verify his or her identity directly with the company.
    • Do not provide personal information, or information about your organization, including its structure and equipment, unless you are certain of a person's authority to have the information.
    • Do not reveal personal or financial information in an email, and do not respond to email solicitations for this information. This includes following links sent in email.
    • Pay attention to the URL of a website. Malicious websites may look identical to a legitimate site, but the URL may use a variation in spelling or a different domain (e.g., .com vs. .net).

    https://krebsonsecurity.com/2015/12/dont-be-a-victim-of-tax-refund-fraud-in-16/

    For more information on spoofing, check out this story of a CEO that experienced first-hand how spoofers operate.

    https://krebsonsecurity.com/2016/02/phishers-spoof-ceo-request-w2-forms/

    If you have questions or concerns about emails, and spoofing, give the TAC a call at (231) 591-4822, or toll free at (877) 779-4822.