Teachers College’s network and computing technology provide information, data, and communication services. Teachers College Information Technology (TCIT) is responsible for maintaining and supporting the TC campus network infrastructure, and overall operations and security of the College’s networks. To ensure proper operation, support, and security of the College’s networks, TCIT must maintain the ability to configure and monitor all network, communications, and telecommunications-related equipment and devices.
This policy applies to all students, staff, faculty members, officers, employees, and affiliates of Teachers College, Columbia University, including extended learning sites, guests, tenants, visitors, contractors, consultants, vendors, individuals authorized by affiliated institutions and organizations, and all others granted use of and/or access to Teachers College, Columbia University technology resources and data.
This policy applies to all communications cabling, equipment, and infrastructure devices, including but not limited to the following: telecommunications switches, data networking switches, and routers, wireless access points, cellular distributed antenna systems, cellular repeaters and/or bi-directional amplifiers, cellular macro sites, cable and satellite television reception, and distribution equipment.
Any and all communications cabling shall be installed and maintained by TCIT. This includes any permanent cabling and/or cabling between workspaces and rooms intended to be used for voice and data networking or other communications. Structured cabling systems serve to hinder physical compromises of cabling through the use of enclosed pathways and secure cable termination facilities. Teachers College uses modern cabling systems and adheres to installation specifications to ensure maximum performance and minimum disruption due to compromised system integrity. The College designs cabling configuration to maximize performance and reliability.
All routers on the campus network shall be installed and maintained by TCIT. Routers serve to segment networks and enforce security policies. Routers may also obscure network devices that are part of the campus network. Therefore, it is necessary for TCIT to maintain routers because of the inherent responsibility to provide overall network operation, support, and security. All routers will be installed in secure server room locations with restricted access and access monitoring. Access to server rooms must be approved by the CIO of TCIT or designated representatives. Access to server rooms is controlled through the Public Safety’s Lenel security system. Server room temperature is monitored by TC’s facilities department.
All network communications switches (e.g., Ethernet switches) on the campus network shall be installed and maintained by TCIT. Switches serve to move communications traffic between various network endpoints while segmenting networks and enforcing security policies. Many switches provide a means to tap into communications traffic, which provides a malicious user with a potential method to compromise data security. All switches will be stored in either of the server rooms on campus or in locked switch closets. Access to those closets is determined by the CIO of TCIT or designated representatives.
All Wireless Access Points (WAPs) and other non-client devices (e.g., repeaters) on the campus network shall be installed and maintained by TCIT, they serve to move communications traffic between various network endpoints while segmenting networks and enforcing security policies. Many WAPs combine features of routers and switches, and the shared nature of wireless communications makes them inherently insecure without proper configuration and use of strong encryption. Due to the shared nature of wireless communications, deployment of WAPs must also be coordinated in order to prevent harmful interference.
All telecommunications switches (e.g., PBXes) on the campus shall be installed and maintained by TCIT. Telecommunications switches serve to move voice communications traffic between various network endpoints while enforcing security policies. Many telecommunications switches provide a means to tap into communications traffic, which provides a malicious user with a potential method to compromise data security. Telecommunications switches are also subject to regulatory requirements regarding emergency calling and law enforcement communications intercepts.
Exception: Residents of the College’s residence halls are permitted to install personally owned wireless access points. However, if a device is found to interfere with the campus data network, TCIT may block its connectivity. In such a situation, TCIT will make an effort to notify the resident and determine whether it may be reconnected when properly configured. Maintenance of personal devices is the responsibility of the individual.
All cellular telephone (voice and data) communications, infrastructure cabling, antennas, and equipment shall be installed and maintained by TCIT. The cellular infrastructure (e.g., distributed antenna systems, bi-directional amplifiers) assures reliable mobile voice and data communications and is subject to regulatory requirements including emergency calling and emergency location services. The College relies on cellular services for the emergency notification (“reverse 911”) of the College population. Cellular wireless services must be coordinated so as not to cause or be subject to harmful interference and to comply with applicable regulations.
All cable and satellite television infrastructure cabling, antennas and equipment shall be installed and maintained by TCIT. The College standards ensure that antennas, cables, and equipment installed for cable and satellite television are installed safely and without causing damage or unsightly alterations to the College’s buildings. Central administration of all campus routers, switches, WAPs, and other non-client devices ensures proper implementation of configurations and security policies and minimizes the risk of data security compromise.
The College uses enterprise-grade routers, switches, and wireless systems that provide performance, scalability, and availability. TCIT staff continuously monitors the utilization and health of all network components and security incidents and responds to address problems and abnormal situations.
Responsible Office: Teachers College Information Technology
Effective Date: February 1, 2021
Last Updated: January 15, 2021