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McMaster IT News

May/June 2022
McMaster Connectivity Newsletter

For the IT community, by the IT community.

Please note, there will be reduced newsletter issues over the summer semester. Regular monthly issues will resume in September.

McMaster IT @ 2021 President's Awards

A big congratulations to ALL the McMaster IT community members who received and were nominated for this year's President's Awards! Each year McMaster's President presents a number of awards to recognize the contributions of individuals and teams within the McMaster community who have demonstrated excellence and outstanding commitment, and who have made significant contributions to their particular field. Learn more here:

Well done to all - we are so proud of you! 

The Office of the AVP and CTO at McMaster University is launching the “Women in Tech Summer Series” to highlight women in the Higher Education IT sector across Canada
The Women in Tech Summer Series will bring together the following university Chief Information Officers:

June 28, 1PM-2PM: Sandeep Sidhu
Chief Information Officer at Emily Carr University

July 25, 1PM-2PM: Jody Couch
Assistant Vice President of Information Technology Services and Chief Information Officer at Dalhousie University

July 26, 3PM-4PM: Nela Petkovic
Chief Information Officer at Wilfred Laurier University

August 23, 12PM-1PM: France Bigras
Associate Vice President of Information Systems and Chief Information Officer at Concordia University

August 31, 2PM-3PM: Shari Baraniuk
Associate Vice President Information Communication Technology and Chief Information Officer at University of Saskatchewan

To learn more about the series and to register, click the link below!

Learn more
Data governance at McMaster

Data Governance Update

Data Governance is a strategic university priority, based in the Provost’s Office,  working closely with University Technology Services, Institutional Research and Analysis and functional areas across the university. Reach out to with any questions!

Check out the June 2022 Data Governance Update on the Data Governance website here.

For more information, visit the Data Governance website or reach out to Data Governance at

Data Cookbook Now Available

The Data Cookbook is McMaster’s catalogue for Data Systems, Data Processes and Data Elements (metadata). All McMaster employees can access the Cookbook here to browse Data Elements, Data Processes and Data Systems. Drop-in sessions to learn more about Cookbook are scheduled every Wednesday at 3:30 p.m. Click here to join the meeting. Cookbook resources are available on the Data Governance website here.

Data and Information Classification Policy

This policy has been approved by PVP (President and Vice-Presidents) and is a strategic imperative to protect McMaster data and information while ensuring access for authorized users. This policy and additional resources are posted here.

Read more
Changes are here for Microsoft 365 and Zoom terms of use - here's what you need to know
Terms of Use changes related to Microsoft 365 and Zoom services that will optimize our security, data and storage management are being implemented. If you are a Team/Group owner, collaborate with guests external to McMaster or rely on your chat history and meeting recordings, click below for what you can expect plus more information and support.
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CYBER ALERT: A new, streamlined approach for McMaster cyber alerts and awareness

The McMaster Information Security Services team has introduced new methods for sharing critical information and updates from the cyber security landscape (e.g. CanSSOC) with the McMaster IT community. Keep an eye on your inbox and check out the Cyber Alerts Teams channel to view past alerts. 

IT security tips for McMaster users traveling abroad

Planning a trip? Check out these handy tips to help maintain IT security best practices before, during and after you travel.

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Finer details to note for a smooth travel experience

When travelling to different regions around the globe or within Canada; ensure that the clock on your PC and phone is synced correctly to the destination’s time zone prior to accessing university email or any application that asks for your McMaster Microsoft account. (e.g: If travelling to Vancouver, ensure that the clock is synced to Pacific Standard Time and not Eastern Standard Time prior to logging into Avenue2Learn).  

MFA drop-in sessions to support universal adoption

To support the McMaster community with universal adoption of MFA, the Information Security Services team is hosting virtual drop-in sessions for anyone who has questions about how to prepare yourself for MFA, guide you on the set-up process and address any questions.

Virtual drop-in sessions are available on Microsoft Teams meetings every Tuesday and Thursday from 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. until June 30, 2022. Community members can also join the Microsoft Teams group to post questions and get answers from the Information Security Services team.

VPN accelerator for students in mainland China discontinued

With the return to in-person learning and McMaster’s shift to the Microsoft 365 environment, the Alibaba virtual private network (VPN) accelerator for students in mainland China was decommissioned June 15 2022.

Learn more
Course Spotlight: Indigenous Data Sovereignty - Summer Learning Cohort
Indigenous Data Sovereignty is an important consideration for IT Security, Research Data Management, and more! Join our Summer Learning Cohort working through the First Nations Information Governance Centre’s Fundamentals of OCAP® training course. OCAP®, which stands for ownership, control, access, and possession, is a set of principles that establishes “how First Nations’ data and information is collected, protected, used, or shared.”
The course is online and self-guided, with seven modules that take about 40 minutes each to complete. We have created an MS Team for anyone interested in engaging with a cohort to reflect on course content, ask questions, share additional resources, and consider applications within our local frameworks.
Registrations are processed on the 20th of each month—to participate in the summer cohort, register on the FNIGC website by June 20. Once you have registered, join our MS Team: Summer Learning Cohort - Indigenous Data Sovereignty. Contact Danica Evering, Research Data Management Specialist (MUL/RHPCS) with any questions at
2022 McMaster Accessibility Week Post-Session Resources

2022 National Accessibility Week has wrapped – as a result of your passion, dedication, and commitment to learning more about accessibility and critical approaches to disability inclusion from experts and scholars in these areas, we had between 350-400 people attending sessions across the week. Simply amazing! 

Since there were so many participants floating in and out of sessions, we are including recordings to all public sessions and transcripts of most sessions below. The recordings will not include the two critical panel sessions or the student-only workshops facilitated by the Student Success Centre.  

For future accessibility-related events, please key an eye out on the 2022 Accessibility Events, Training, and Speaker Series page. Next up are this summer's H.E.A.A.R.T sessions. 


To check back for updated documents or recordings, please visit this word document.

Have you subscribed to the UTS Service Dashboard?

The new UTS Service Dashboard allows you to customize your preferences for alerts on upcoming planned maintenance and unplanned major service interruptions. The dashboard is built on Atlassian. You can set your preferences to receive your alerts via email and/or text for the services most relevant to your work. Subscribe today!


10 Noteworthy M365 Updates

Check out our list of 10 Noteworthy updates and integrations to Microsoft 365 apps including Teams, Outlook, OneDrive and more! Find out how these updates can help you!

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IT folks around campus: UTS Tree Planting 
On Friday, May 13th the UTS Social Committee organized a garden planting event to help beautify the McMaster campus. Everyone brought their nature-loving spirit and made a lasting contribution to the campus grounds!

CANHEIT 2022 is happening June 21 - 23!

University of the Fraser Valley (UFV) hosts CANHEIT 2022 from June 21 to 23. There will be fantastic representation from the McMaster IT community, so support your colleagues at the largest gathering of Canadian higher education IT leaders from universities, colleges and technical institutes. 

Learn more
McMaster Byte Size: Your Monthly Tech Newsletter

Have you subscribed to the monthly tech newsletter for McMaster students, staff and faculty? McMaster Byte Size includes tech news, reminders, training and more for the McMaster community to learn more about IT security, Microsoft 365 and Zoom offerings, new services and more! Have a news item to submit for an upcoming issue? Get in touch!

Tech Spotlight: Local industry news
Have you noticed a tech boom in Hamilton in the last few years?

A recent study showed Hamilton as the 4th fastest growing city for tech talent in North America, attracting expertise from around the world. The study suggests that tech expansion projects from some of the world’s largest companies and curriculum offered by big universities was the catalyst for “leading the charge.” Exciting things to come for Hamilton's tech future! Click the link below to read more.
Learn More

Have a story you want to share with the IT Community? Email Tanya Reid at to feature an article!

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2022, McMaster IT

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