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About This Newsletter

The Office of Information Technology ('OIT') newsletter is a streamlined method of communicating network and system outages, upgrades and announcements. You will find information about new services, upcoming changes, the status of larger IT projects and news about important IT topics.

Please direct any questions or comments to the OIT Helpdesk at 979-436 0250 or

Service Spotlight

Apple Support

The Office of Information Technology has been working hard for the last few years to improve the support provided for the ever-increasing number of Apple computers at the Health Science Center. As of today, our team has 5 Apple Certified technicians all over the state, and we have more techs studying to take the test in the next few months. This means that your local OIT support can work on your Apple computers, both in and out of warranty! We’ve also worked with SHI and Apple to offer Apple purchases through SHI. This gives us a new HUB vendor with an existing relationship that we can now leverage for Apple purchases. Purchases made through SHI are also configured specifically for the Health Science Center - making the setup of a new machine much quicker than through another vendor!

Discover All IT Services

Scheduled Outages 

Planned Maintenance Window

The Office of Information Technology is establishing a regular maintenance window on the first Sunday of the month starting on December 2, 2018. This window will allow OIT to run updates on various products and services, so there may be some intermittent outages that occur during that time. If you have any questions or concerns about what might be updated during an upcoming maintenance window, please contact the Help Desk at or 800-799-7472.

Information Technology News

Help Desk Integration

As we have moved through our integration with the Division of IT, the Office of Information Technology has been working hard to find opportunities to increase efficiencies and improve the IT services provided to the Health Science Center. Currently, we operate two separate IT Help Desks and it is clear to us that integrating the two will not only make us more efficient, but also provide some additional benefits to everyone at the HSC.

Help Desk Central currently provides 24-hour support, seven days a week (including a convenient chat support option). This will allow you to get IT assistance regardless of the time of day. Many students, staff, and faculty have been confused about which Help Desk to call, and with this integration, you will have access to a 24/7 “one-stop-shop” for IT assistance as well as the same in-person support you’re accustomed to. We will also continue to offer our walk-up support services on the first floor of HPEB and in all HSC campuses. If you need on-site assistance, our staff will still come by your office to resolve your issue quickly and with a smile!

On December 10, 2018, the HSC Help Desk phone numbers (979-436-0250 and 800-799-7472) will be forwarded to Help Desk Central (979-845-8300), and the Office of Information Technology will no longer take phone calls from our Bryan office.

These changes will have little-to-no impact on your daily interactions with HSC OIT.

Providing excellent customer service is our top priority, and we will continue to work directly with the Help Desk Central staff to ensure a smooth transition.

Attend the Monthly IT Advisory Committee Meeting

The monthly HSC IT Advisory Committee meeting will be held on December 7, 2018 from 10 a.m. to noon in room 3047A at HPEB.

At the beginning of the meeting, 30 minutes will be allocated for any faculty and staff at the HSC that may have questions or concerns about central IT services and functions. Video conference rooms are set up throughout the HSC for the staff and faculty who are not local to Bryan/College Station.

  • To RSVP, email by December 3, 2018

Learn more about IT Governance and committees.

Duo Security Two-Factor Authentication

 The Office of Information Technology is continuing with the roll-out of two-factor authentication (2FA) through Duo Security. 2FA adds a second layer of security to your computer access. Verifying your identity using a second factor (like your phone or another mobile device) prevents anyone but you from logging in, even if they know your password.

Beginning January 1, 2019, we will be expanding our Duo coverage to all HSC desktops and laptops that are used in areas that are part of the Texas A&M HIPAA Covered Entity, or act as Business Associates to a covered entity. The list of groups can be found in the HIPAA Health Care Component Designation Memorandum Appendix A. The first groups that will be added to use Duo at login are the Texas A&M Health Community Clinic, and the A&M Rural Community Health Institute.

What does this mean for me?

Starting in January when you log in to your computer, after typing your username and password, you will be required to use Duo. For more information on Duo Security and Two-Factor Authentication, check out our Helpdesk guide.

To help simplify the use of Duo, OIT is also offering Yubikey USB tokens that can be used in place of your phone for Duo. This is especially helpful if you have trouble getting a cellular signal in the building, or you leave your phone at home. To order a Yubikey, fill out this form and OIT will start the process of setting one up for you.

STAR encrypt STAR

OIT provides a simple method to send encrypted emails to external (non-TAMHSC) email addresses by adding *encrypt* to your subject line. The recipient will see an email with a link to view the message, and will be prompted to register before receiving the secure message. Encrypted emails should be used anytime you have a business need to share confidential data with a non-HSC person.

How to Send Encrypted Emails

Coming Soon!

Classroom Upgrades

The Office of Information Technology is currently working with IMS to get our classrooms with aging equipment upgraded. Currently, we have scheduled for HPEB LL38 and LL44 to be upgraded over the holiday break.

To facilitate this upgrade, the Office of Information Technology has blocked off the use of both LL38 and LL44 from December 13, 2018, until January 9, 2019.
If you have any questions about the upgrade please direct them to our Help Desk at


IT Comic of the Month

Helpdesk, how-tos, services and more.
Office of Information Technology
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