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Support Ends for Symantec Antivirus and PGP Encryption on October 21, 2016

Related services: Security & Policy


For the past two years, the IT Security Office has been working with security liaisons and local technical support staff to prepare for retiring: 

Alternatives are provided in the above links. On October 21, support will come to an end for these products. If the products are not uninstalled prior to that date, it's unclear what the user experience will be afterward. The products may display alerts about being unlicensed, or there may be little indication that old code could be exploited as the software isn’t updated.

How Tech Support Can Help Replace Symantec

Local tech support staff are responsible for helping to transition all Cornell-owned computers to an alternative antivirus product.

It's highly likely that antivirus users (faculty, staff, students, alumni, retires, and affiliates with NetIDs), who've been able to install and use Symantec on personal and non-Cornell-owned work computers, will have questions. Unfortunately, there is no way for us to determine who exactly has Symantec antivirus installed on a machine. CIT will make every attempt to notify user audiences in general about the risks and point them to the Antivirus homepage for recommended alternatives. Any help from department TSPs reaching out to groups of department or unit community members is highly appreciated.

How Tech Support Can Help Replace PGP

Local tech support staff are responsible for helping to transition all Cornell-owned computers to an alternative encryption product: BitLocker or MBAM (managed BitLocker) for Windows, or FileVault for Macintosh.

It's possible that faculty or staff (no other groups) will have installed PGP on a personal or non-Cornell-owned machine. We've fortunately been able to pull a list of PGP users, and we will use that list to reach out to users directly via email, in addition to continuing to announce the change via public communications, like this article. If users have installed PGP themselves, they may reach out to local support for help switching to an alternative. Any help from department TSPs with individual cases is highly appreciated. Of course, we'll provide escalation paths during the transition, as we do with all such scenarios.

Make Time for This Change

Tech support professionals are encouraged to set time aside during the next few months to plan for and follow through on this product transition. If you have questions, we recommend starting with your local security liaisons, who've been part of this discussion for some time. Anything they can't answer can be forwarded to the IT Security Office: securty-services@cornell.edu

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