We have a student-staffed Help Desk at SUNY Canton. Although it's a time
sink in managing them, their help has significantly improved the efficiency
of our staff, and offloaded many simple problems. The students not only
staff the phones, but repair routine hardware, software, and configuration
problems on faculty and staff computers, as well as rebuild or reclone
corrupted PCs. They do have access to seeing what is on the faculty and
staff PCs. There have been a few distrusting staff who refuse to allow a
student to access their PCs, even under supervision, and our regular staff
have accommodated these few folks in the past.
Recently there was a similar discussion on a listserv I'm on, of
faculty/staff PC information privacy issues. I recall the best response was
from someone who offered a policy they'd developed ensuring that IT staff,
including students, treated information on faculty/staff computers with
confidentiality. It also set expectations to faculty/staff reminding them
that the computers and network resources really belonged to the college, not
the individuals, that the information and software maintained on them was
for college related business only, and that although info would be treated
with respect, they shouldn't expect it to never be seen by others. This
dealt pretty effectively with the issue in that college's view.
Given recent information privacy concerns from HIPAA and GLB act that add
fuel to the fire, next fall an interdepartmental committee at our campus
will be adding these terms to our computer and network use policy.
Director of Information Technology/CIO
Cornell Drive, Canton, NY 13617
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----- Original Message -----
From: "John Bromback" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Wednesday, June 11, 2003 3:53 PM
Subject: [CIO] Student access to faculty desktops.
> I seem to remember this issue being discussed on one of the listserves
> but can't seem to find it again.
> Anyway, what are people's thoughts on enabling students (working for an
> institutional Technology Support Center or Help Desk) to have access to
> faculty computers. We would like to use students in setting up and
> troubleshooting faculty computer systems but have concerns about possible
> security issues and vunerability of faculty data. Do you allow students
> access to the administrator password? Does anyone have a written policy
> on this that they would be willing to share?
> Thanks in advance for any help,
> John Bromback
> Director, IT Systems
> Fitchburg State College
> (978) 665-3297
> [log in to unmask]
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