Faculty-staff involvement needed: Laptop encryption project nears goal

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(Aug. 30, 2012) -- To protect private student records and scholarly data, the University of Texas System requires that all laptop computers owned by UT institutions be encrypted by the end of August.

Since the latest UTSA encryption campaign began in late July, more than 2,000 (nearly 70 percent) of approximately 3,000 UTSA-owned laptops have been encrypted. Approximately 1,000 laptops used by UTSA faculty and staff members still must be encrypted as soon as possible.

Initially, it was estimated that approximately 4,000 UTSA laptops needed encrypting or re-encrypting. But, approximately 1,000 older laptops will have been "surplused," where the hard drives will be erased and the computers disposed of because they will not accept encryption.

The estimated 2,000 encrypted laptops includes encryption exemption requests that must be approved by UT System. The number requiring encryption may increase, depending on the approval by UT System.

"I know many faculty are returning to campus this week, and I encourage them to contact the Laptop Encryption Center immediately to schedule their laptops for encryption," said John H. Frederick, UTSA provost and vice president for academic affairs. "I also want to thank everyone in the center and the information technology associates for all the hard work they continue to put in to help us reach full compliance with the UT System mandate."

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>> Read a July 27 story on UTSA Today, which outlines the encryption policy guidelines and procedures for encrypting UTSA-owned laptop computers.

>> Read details at the Laptop Encryption Project website. Check the website on a regular basis; the site will be updated as new information is available.

>> Questions? Email LEC@utsa.edu or call the Laptop Encryption Center at 210-458-7648.