UMB Information Technology Report - November 2019

Collaborative Initiatives

Quantum Financials and Analytics Project

  • The new financial system went “live” successfully on October 2, 2019.  It was a smooth transition to the new system.  Data analytics software is being used to develop financial dashboard indicators and reports.

Faculty Center for Teaching and Learning with Technology

  • Faculty from each school, led by Louise Jenkins, are continuing to meet to discuss and identify strategies for professional development and the innovative uses of technology in teaching. They are working with Christina Cestone, Executive Director for the Faculty Center for Teaching and Learning, to jointly sponsor the 3rd annual Teaching with Technology Day in spring 2020.
  • There have been 16 new online courses developed this year in the Center.

Research Data Management Program, Data Trust Committee and CTSA

  • A Data Trust Committee (DTC), Chaired by Dr. Jarrell, has been formed to provide oversight, develop policies, and make recommendations related to research use of patient data in clinical information systems of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS) entities.  The DTC will assist with and support the NIH Clinical and Translational Science Award that UMB has with JHU.
  • UMB is implementing a product from TriNetX that will contain UMMS data to be used for the CTSA project and the research of patient data.

Microsoft Office 365 for Education

  • The use of O365 has grown exponentially across the University.
  • There are over 10 thousand active users; over 10 million files stored in OneDrive; and over 500 SharePoint sites. 

Identity Management

  • The Kuali Research Application is consolidated with UMCP and both campuses access the system through a single portal with their university ID and password. The project achieved a key goal of allowing combined access and reporting of research proposals and awards generated by both universities.  The next step is the development of consolidated UMB/UMCP research productivity reports.

Information Security

  • IT security staff throughout the UMB and UMMS enterprise are collaborating, meeting regularly and sharing IT security information; UMB IT staff are also participating with individuals at other USM institutions on the USM Information Security Council.
  • The Maryland Office of Legislative Audit (OLA) identified just one IT/IS Discussion Note (DN).  This one DN was not deemed worthy to be included in the final University of Maryland, Baltimore Audit Report that was released to the public in July 2019.  There weren’t any IT findings in the final legislative audit report for UMB.
  • Every day we are addressing security threats that could affect the confidentiality, integrity and availability of sensitive data located on UMB systems
    • Our first line of defense is the UMB firewall which is configured to deny all traffic by default and only allowing access to systems via specific network ports.  The firewall prevents approximately 96 million attempts daily to get unauthorized access to the UMB network, computers, and data.
    • The campus system for email delivery, is fortified with anti-spam and anti-virus software and is monitored continuously since about 75% of all incoming email is identified to contain some type of security threat and must be blocked.
    • Daily scans of the UMB network and computers are undertaken to search for and address any found vulnerability inside the University network.
    • SSL Inspection has also been implemented, which is another tool to prevent malicious threats from entering the campus network.  Approximately 80% of Internet “traffic” attempting to enter our campus network is encrypted, and SSL inspection decrypts and inspects this traffic for malicious threats before it can enter the network and attach malware to UMB computing devices.
  • The USM mandated annual security awareness training campaign will continue this year with additional training and educational activities.
    • The cybersecurity awareness training includes courses on privacy, data protection, handling sensitive information; mobile device security; and ramsomware.
    • The cybersecurity training also includes simulated phishing tests to help the UMB community become more cybersecurity aware and better prepared to safeguard the information assets that are entrusted to us.

Community Engagements and Collaborations

Global Health Communication Sessions

  • As a follow-up to Dr. Perman’s Zambia webcast, monthly WebEx sessions are being scheduled to connect UMB personnel to personnel in Africa.
  • Assistance is being provided to the IT team residing in African countries with their IT infrastructure, data management and information security. 

New Community Engagement Center Building

  • UMB IT staff are working diligently on the project to ensure all network, computer and audio-visual needs are addressed in the new building.

Operational Enhancements and Collaborations

Amazon AWS

  • The Amazon AWS cloud infrastructure will be available for use by schools and departments in February 2020. Training and education sessions will be held to show personnel in schools and departments how to access and provision computing services on the AWS infrastructure.

Cisco Collaboration Platform and WebEx

  • This platform is available for use by schools and departments. It provides voice/video conferencing via WebEx for individuals, in conference rooms, and in classrooms.
  • There have been over 30 Cisco “Room Kits” purchased and installed in schools and departments, which provide easy, intuitive video and audio conferencing capabilities.
  • There are currently 2,524 licensed WebEx users.  Since April 2019, there have been over 7,000 WebEx meetings held with over 24,000 participants.

Telephony VoIP and Voicemail upgrade

  • There will be upgrades made to the UMB telephony infrastructure this year which will include introducing the “soft client”, where internal telephone calls can be made directly from computing devices.A new voicemail system will also be introduced to the UMB community this year. 

Student System

  • The student system was successfully upgraded to the newest version this year; the soft roll-out of a student recruitment system was implemented for the Graduate School, the School of Nursing, and the School of Social Work this year.

Instructional Systems

  • IT staff are working collaboratively and a working group will be established to develop a list of IT/AV standards, both hardware and software, for instructional spaces.  This standard approach will support and benefit individual programs as well as inter-professional education as faculty, trained once, will be able to roam from one room and building to another and immediately utilize the technology in place.

Philanthropy IT systems

  • Work is underway to enhance IT systems and applications for Philanthropy, e.g., implementing a new electronic processing of gifts; upgrading the system for communicating with alumni; enhancing the prospect tracking system.

SMC Campus Center

  • UMB IT staff are collaborating with staff in the SMC Campus Center to plan and perform a complete upgrade of the audio-visual equipment in the Center.  The ballroom will be completed first with the installation planned from mid-December 2019 to January 2020.  The AV equipment in the other rooms in the Center will be completed immediately after the ballroom is finished.

Migrating Blackboard eLearning System to the Cloud

  • The Blackboard eLearning application, used by all schools, is migrating to the cloud version.  The migration will be completed in December 2019. 

UMB Alerts system

  • The UMB Alert System was recently migrated to a new system, the EverBridge System.

Electronic Signatures

  • UMB has purchased DocuSign.  A project plan for implementing this electronic signature software is currently being developed.

OneCard Building Access Project

  • A OneCard building access project has been underway which automatically removes individuals from the building access system when they leave the University;
  • An electronic form is now being used for requesting and approving building/room access.
  • The final phase of the project is an entitlement review of all individuals who currently have electronic access to UMB buildings and areas in buildings.

Privacy and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

  • The European Union’s (EU) GDPR is a privacy law that governs the use of personally identifiable information (PII) obtained in the European Union (EU).  The GDPR provides legal rights to people who are residents of the EU when their personal data are collected.  The GDPR imposes legal obligations on entities that control personal data collected in the EU.  A UMB Privacy/GDPR working group is implementing actions to address this regulation.

Web Accessibility

  • A new UMB web accessibility policy complies with requirements to provide equitable access to web based content and services for individuals of all abilities. 

Assessment of IT Services

IT Satisfaction Survey

  • An IT satisfaction survey was administered in spring 2019. Results for two key items are below.
  • The Likert opinion scale was used: 1-very dissatisfied to 5-very satisfied.


How satisfied are you that IT personnel take a “customer-oriented” approach to helping you?





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Please rate your overall satisfaction with the IT services you receive.




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