Minutes: November 21, 2007


Report of the meeting of the COMPUTING COMMITTEE of Erindale College Council held on Wednesday, November 21, 2007 at 3:10 p.m. in the Ante Room, #3129, S.B.

Present: J. Lim (in the Chair), A. Wensley, R. deSouza, C. Capewell, R. Gerlai, C. Mejia, J. Sills, A. Akers, T. Al-Sarraj, J. Hu, S. Senese

Regrets: D. Kreuger, A. Vyas, S. Abboud

In attendance: Andrew Veglio, Micro Electronics

1. Minutes of the Previous Meeting (October 24, 2007)

The minutes of the previous meeting were approved.

2. Report of officers:

a) Network security - Joe Lim, CIO

Mr. Lim, pointed to the network policy handout which was distributed for discussion and feedback in draft form at the previous meeting of the committee.

The policy is attached hereto as Appendix A.

It was duly moved and seconded,

THAT the Computing Committee recommend to Erindale College Council the approval of the Network Security Policy document, as circulated. (J. Lim / R. deSouza)

The Chair opened the floor to discussion on the motion.

A member referred to the section of the policy talking about a physical security of computers and asked whether it was practical to enforce the rule that “devices must be configured to lock and require a user to re-authenticate if left unattended for more than 20 minutes.” Mr. Lim explained that although difficult to enforce, this policy statement was meant to convey to users that everyone has the responsibility to ensure that data is protected and to make sure that their computer is secure. It is meant to generate awareness about computer security and to provide appropriate guidelines for the general user.

A member commented that in the Office of the Registrar, this rule is set at 5 minutes.

Mr. Lim noted that the university community, including graduate students, may contact Computing Services for help in implementing computer security.

The Chief Administrative Officer commented that there have been incidents in the past when exams were copied onto USB keys from computers that had been left unattended and unsecured. In the absence of such a policy, staff have no guidelines to follow.

The policy will be posted on online and an email message announcing its availability will be sent.

In response to a member’s question, Mr. Lim explained that when students sign up for a computer account, they already sign an appropriate use policy, which offers guidelines about connecting to the university’s network.

Mr. Lim commented that that the network security policy would be submitted to the Operations Committee, whose task it would be to develop specific guidelines.

The motion was approved.

b) Regular downtime schedule of services – Kevin Lee, Computing Services Manager

It was agreed that item 2 b) would be moved to the agenda of the January 2008 meeting of the Computing Committee due to a scheduling conflict.

3. New Business:

a) University Information Technology Services (ITS) review report: document for discussion

The ITS review document is attached hereto as Appendix B.

Mr. Lim explained that in March 2007, the Office of the Vice-President and Provost undertook an administrative review of the University information technology services (ITS). The report’s recommendations are summarized below:

1) Establish a central group that has authority and the ability to to make assessments and recommendations regarding institutional ITS, and that has clear authority with respect to core ITS that are delivered at the institutional level (i.e., SIS, AMS, and CNS).

Mr. Lim noted that currently SIS reports to the Vice President of Student Services, AMS reports to the Vice President of Business Affairs, and CNS reports to the Vice President of Planning and Budget, with no central coordination occurring between these areas.

2) The above central group should be led by a Chief Information Officer (CIO) who holds a senior rank, reporting either to the President or the Vice President and Provost.

3) Create a senior level ITS committee, chaired by the CIO, whose mandate would be to review strategy and plans for ITS; recommend major IT investments; and establish appropriate sub-committees as necessary.

Mr. Lim commented that these proposed changes signal that the university sees IT as an integral part of the university’s mission. The review document, however, does not address U of T Mississauga and does not discuss the library in depth.

The Chief Administrative Officer noted that the search for a CIO is currently underway, with the position expected to be filled in early 2008.

b) Announcements:

Mr. Lim reported that as of January 2008 CCT 2140 will be decommissioned as a computer laboratory and will be turned over to the Office of the Registrar for classroom use. Two smaller laboratories (24 seats ideal for tutorial use) will be created to replace this loss by summer 2008. He added that without computer set up, the 48-seat lab will be turned into a 60-seat classroom.

The next meeting of the Computing Committee will be on Wednesday, January 16, 2008.

The meeting was adjourned at 4:00 p.m.

Secretary _______________________________ Chair ________________________________