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MU Blocks Outlook App

Employees can still access email and calendars on smartphones

Story by Kelsey Allen
Published Feb. 11, 2015

Microsoft Outlook iconInformation security has never been more important. As chair of the Homeland Security Academic Advisory Council, Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin is engaged in information-security efforts on a national level.

Protecting Privacy

At Mizzou, Loftin has placed Beth Chancellor, associate chief information security officer, in charge of cultivating responsible cyber-citizenship on campus.

Information security, also known as InfoSec, refers to the practices used to keep information and data in the right hands. At the university, this information might include student and patient records, intellectual property or employee performance evaluations. The MU security staff works to identify and address security threats and risks.

Vulnerabilities in Outlook App

On Jan. 29, Microsoft released a new Outlook application that puts employees’ data at risk. Employees should not use the app, Chancellor says. The application has security flaws that allow a user's data — login ID, password, emails, contacts and calendar events — to be stored in a cloud and accessed by Microsoft.

To avoid a security breach, on Feb. 3 the MU Division of IT (DoIT) blocked the app on Apple and Android devices from connecting to the university’s Microsoft Exchange email servers.

Retrieving Email

Employees can still access email and calendars on smartphones. Users can retrieve email through the default email application that comes with a phone, as well as any number of email applications that can be downloaded from app stores.

Questions about information security can be directed to ISAM@missouri.edu or to IT Tech Support at 573-882-5000.

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