Howard University is allowing some students, faculty, and staff back on campus after a ransomware attack was caught last Friday. Tuesday classes were canceled as a result. While the reopening is in part good news, Howard officials are warning it’s not all over just yet. Get more information from the Howard official updates below.
The following operational status will be in place for faculty, staff and students during this phase of our emergency management response:
- Students enrolled in exclusively in-person classes should report to campus.
- Undergraduate hybrid and online courses remain suspended for tomorrow, September 9.
- Graduate/professional students taking online/hybrid courses should remain remote and continue to access those courses remotely. (This instructional modality has typically been through Zoom or Microsoft Teams.)
- Researchers are allowed to be on campus to continue their research. ETS will continue meeting in segmented clusters with various researchers according to the data asset class.
- Faculty convening face-to-face courses should come to campus to continue teaching their classes. Please note that any lecture content that requires online activity will not be accessible if you are on campus and are reliant on the Howard network or VPN access. If you have a hotspot or MiFi, you will be able to access your signal.
- Faculty who teach undergraduate hybrid and online courses should remain remote, as no WiFi is available in 6 out of 8 dorms on campus. (Our residential students use campus WiFi to connect to our network). Online and hybrid courses remain suspended for tomorrow, September 9.
- Faculty who teach graduate/professional online/hybrid courses should remain remote, and students can continue to access those courses remotely. (This instructional modality has typically been through Zoom or Microsoft Teams.)
- If your office is open to students, in-person meetings are allowed.
- All staff who can perform their duties without being logged into the Howard University network must come to work.
- No University offices should be closed, regardless of the network status.
- All essential staff will report to campus per their usual schedules.
COVID-19 Testing Centers are Open:
- Student COVID-19 testing will continue in the Blackburn Center. Students will continue to receive an email notification instructing them on when they should get tested.
- Blackburn testing site for students is open from 9 a.m.-12 p.m. and 1 p.m.-4 p.m. Monday through Friday.
- Faculty/Staff testing will continue in suite 3600 of the Hospital Towers building led by the Faculty Practice Plan.
- Hospital Towers testing site for faculty/staff is open from 9 a.m.-12 p.m. and 1 p.m.-4 p.m. Monday through Friday. CRITICAL NOTE:
As ETS works to contain the environment, we will intentionally be disrupting services to the University. We will do our best to communicate ETS actions ahead of time. However, realistically we may not be able to do so. We ask that you stay vigilant and understanding to this highly dynamic situation.
Please be ready to act when prompted.
We appreciate your continued patience and cooperation with the University as we continue our community-wide response to the recent cyberattack. In partnership with our technology system vendors and law enforcement officials, ETS continues its work in investigating and mitigating compromised systems and services.
We are continuing our full assessment of all University academic, communications, and service systems for vulnerabilities. Our response committees are currently developing an isolated server environment that will allow protected online and hybrid instruction.
Faculty, staff, and students should soon expect audits concerning devices and access credentials associated with University work and operations. These audits will require sweeping of phones, laptops, and other digital work tools, which may be susceptible to data breaching. All University usernames, email addresses and other login credentials will be verified for authenticity, access privileges, and activity.
We will continue to keep you updated on expected timelines for the restoration of campus wireless access. We are working on standing up WiFi in the safest environment possible.