MUT’s IT&N moves to strengthen cyber-security

Danielle Venter, centre, with other members of IT&N

The University’s Department of Information Technology and Networks (IT&N) has taken serious steps to secure the network and protect staff laptops from those that aim to harm the network.

Head of Project Management and Service Delivery in the Information Technology and Networks (IT&N) at MUT, Danielle Venter, said they have installed System Centre Configuration Manager (SCCM), which is a software management suite provided by Microsoft that allows administrators to manage endpoints, such as Windows-based PCs, servers, and mobile devices, from a central location. SCCM provides the following benefits for end-user devices: SCCM can be used to deploy software packages to endpoints, including operating systems, updates, and applications.

Venter said this makes it easier to deploy software and get rid of the need to install it by hand on each device. SCCM provides a central database of hardware and software inventory information for all managed devices. This makes it easier for administrators to keep track of the status and configuration of devices. SCCM will let staff deploy and manage security updates and security policies to ensure their devices are safe.  SCCM has remote control features that let administrators access and manage end-user devices from a distance. Venter said that this could be helpful for troubleshooting and fixing problems. Lastly, SCCM can be used to enforce compliance with company policies and regulations, by ensuring that devices have the latest updates, software, and configuration.

Venter appealed to staff to connect to the networks on a regular basis so they would benefit from the SCCM, mainly, and that the laptops would be patched, and all software updated. She said that if a staff member’s laptop has not been logged onto the MUT network recently, it may be missing critical updates.

“We would like to request that you bring your laptops to campus at least once a month to ensure that your laptop is connected to the MUT Network so that any updates can be applied to your laptops,” Venter said.

Venter said patching is the process of applying software updates to fix security vulnerabilities and improve the overall performance of your device. By ensuring that your laptop is fully patched, you can protect your work, personal information, and our company’s confidential data from cyber threats, such as viruses, malware, and hackers.

In addition to improving security, patching can also improve the stability and efficiency of your laptop by fixing bugs and resolving compatibility issues. This will help you be more productive and reduce downtime due to technical problems, Venter said.

Venter advised staff who need assistance to contact the IT&N Helpdesk, on 031 907 7349.