Information Technology Security Program

Approved by the President

Policy Contact
Information Security Officer

“A strategic plan to ensure the confidentiality, integrity, and accessibility of Oneonta’s information assets.”

Table of Contents






The purpose of this document is to define a set of minimum information technology (IT) security requirements that SUNY Oneonta must meet to comply with State and Federal directives. SUNY Oneonta may, based on its individual business needs and specific legal requirements such as FERPA or the GLBA, exceed any or all of the information security requirements put forth in this document, but must, at a minimum, achieve the information security levels defined in this document.

The primary objectives of the IT Security Program are:

  • effectively manage the risk of IT security exposure or compromise within SUNY Oneonta systems;
  • communicate within the campus community the responsibilities for the protection of SUNY Oneonta information;
  • comply with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA - the Buckley Amendment), the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLBA), the Payment Card
  • Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) and other statutes, policies and standards protecting the rights of individuals.
  • consistently maintain data integrity and accuracy.
  • assure that authorized individuals have timely and reliable access to necessary data.
  • deny with reasonable assurance unauthorized individuals access to computing resources or other means to retrieve, modify or transfer data.


This program applies to all faculty, staff, and students of SUNY Oneonta, or others (e.g., Research Foundation employees, OAS employees, vendors, contractors, etc) who may utilize SUNY Oneonta’s technology and related facilities.

This program encompasses all computer systems, for which SUNY Oneonta has responsibility, including systems managed or hosted by third parties on behalf of SUNY Oneonta. It addresses all electronic information, regardless of the form or format, which is created or used in support of the SUNY Oneonta mission.

IT security refers to the protection of information from unauthorized access, destruction, modification or disclosure. For the purposes of this document, information is defined as the representation of facts, concepts, or instructions in an electronic manner suitable for communication, interpretation, or processing by human or automated means.

Information is relayed in a variety of methods such as in written documentation or through computer networks. Information is also stored and retrieved in several formats.

The formats can include but are not limited to computer databases or transmissions, tapes, CD ROMS, diskettes, computer-generated reports, hard copy documentation, email messages, voice mail, etc.

This program must be communicated to all faculty, staff, students and all others who have access to or manage SUNY Oneonta information. This IT security program is not specific to any type of hardware, communications method, network topology, or software applications. As such, it is designed to be implemented across campus.


Section 1. Preface

The President’s Cabinet is fully committed to IT security and agrees that every person in the SUNY Oneonta community has an important responsibility to continuously maintain the security and privacy of SUNY Oneonta data. This IT Security Program is a statement of the minimum requirements, ethics, responsibilities and accepted behaviors required to establish and maintain a secure environment, and achieve SUNY Oneonta's IT security objectives. This IT Security Program sets the direction, gives broad guidance and defines requirements for IT security related processes and actions across SUNY Oneonta.

This program follows the framework of the International Standards Organization’s ISO 27002 - The Information Security Standard.

Section 2. Organizational and Functional Responsibilities

  1. SUNY Oneonta: The President will designate an Information Security Officer (ISO). The ISO will ensure that an organizational structure is in place for:
    • coordinating and implementing information security policies, standard, and procedures;
    • assigning information security responsibilities;
    • implementing an IT security awareness program;
    • monitoring significant changes in the exposure of IT assets to major threats, legal
    • or regulatory requirements;
    • responding to IT security incidents;
    • leading major initiatives to enhance IT Security;
    • leading disaster preparedness planning to ensure continuity of SUNY Oneonta business.
  2. SUNY Oneonta Designated Staff: Designated staff will be responsible for the implementation of this and other IT Security policies and the compliance of SUNY Oneonta employees to this program. The designated staff must educate SUNY Oneonta employees with regard to IT Security issues, explain the issues, why the policies have been established, and what role(s) individuals have in safeguarding IT assets. Consequences of noncompliance will also be explained.
  3. Information Owners: Information owners are responsible for determining who should have access to protected resources within their jurisdiction, and what those access privileges should be (read, update, etc.). These access privileges must be in accordance with the user’s job responsibilities. Information owners also communicate to the SUNY Oneonta ISO the legal requirements for access and disclosure of their data.
    Information owners must be identified for all SUNY Oneonta information assets and assigned responsibility for the maintenance of appropriate information security measures such as assigning and maintaining asset classification and controls, managing user access to their resources, etc. Responsibility for implementing information security measures may be delegated, though accountability remains with the identified owner of the asset.
  4. SUNY Oneonta Information Security Officer: The Information Security Officer has overall responsibility for ensuring the implementation, enhancement, monitoring, and enforcement of this program. The SUNY Oneonta Information Security Officer is responsible for providing direction and leadership to SUNY Oneonta through the recommendation of IT security policies, standards, processes and education and awareness programs to ensure that appropriate safeguards are implemented, and to facilitate compliance with those policies, standards, and processes. The SUNY Oneonta Information Security Officer is responsible for investigating all alleged IT security violations. In this role, the SUNY Oneonta Information Security Officer may refer the investigation to other investigatory entities, including law enforcement. The SUNY Oneonta Information Security Officer will coordinate and oversee IT security program activities and reporting processes in support of this program and other IT security initiatives.
  5. IT Security Administrator: This individual will report to the SUNY Oneonta Information Security Officer and be responsible for administering IT security tools, auditing IT security practices, identifying and analyzing IT security threats and solutions, and responding to IT security violations.
  6. Departments or Individuals with Direct Responsibility for Technology Support:
    • These areas have responsibility for the data processing infrastructure and computing networks which support the information owners. It is their responsibility t to support the IT Security Program and provide resources needed to enhance and maintain a level of IT Security control consistent with SUNY Oneonta’s IT Security Program.
    • These departments have the following responsibilities in relation to the IT security:
      • ensuring processes, policies and requirements are identified and implemented relative to IT security requirements defined by SUNY Oneonta ;
      • ensuring the proper controls of IT are implemented for which SUNY Oneonta has assigned ownership responsibility, based on classification designations;
      • ensuring the participation of the SUNY Oneonta Information Security Officer and technical staff in identifying and selecting appropriate and cost-effective IT security controls and procedures, and in protecting IT assets;
      • ensuring that appropriate IT security requirements for user access to automated information are defined for files, databases, and physical devices assigned to
      • their areas of responsibility;
      • ensuring that critical data and recovery plans are backed up and kept at a secured off-site storage facility and that recovery of backed-up media will work if and when needed.
  7. SUNY Oneonta Employees: It is the responsibility of all employees to protect SUNY Oneonta information and resources, including passwords, and to report suspected IT security incidents to one or more of the following: the information owner, the IT Help Desk, or the Information Security administrator as appropriate.
  8. Non-SUNY Oneonta ​​​​​​​Employees: Oneonta Auxiliary Services (OAS), Research Foundation (RF), Retirees, Contractors, Consultants, Vendors and other persons including students, to the extent of their present or past access to the SUNY Oneonta IT assets, are also covered by this IT Security Program.

Section 3. Information Technology Security

All stored or transmitted electronic information which is created, acquired or used in support of SUNY Oneonta’s mission, regardless of the form or format, must be used for SUNY Oneonta business only. This information is an asset and must be protected from its creation, through its useful life, and to its authorized disposal. It must be maintained in a secure, accurate, and reliable manner and be readily available for authorized use.

Information must be classified and protected based on its importance to business activities, risks, and information security best practices as defined in International

Standards Organization’s ISO 27002 - The Information Security Standard.

  1. Information is one of the SUNY Oneonta’s most valuable assets and relies upon that information to support our mission. The quality and availability of that information is key to SUNY Oneonta's ability to carry out its mission. Therefore, the security of SUNY Oneonta’s information, and of the technologies and systems that support it, is the responsibility of everyone concerned. Each authorized user of SUNY Oneonta information has an obligation to preserve and protect SUNY Oneonta information assets in a consistent and reliable manner. Information security controls provide the necessary physical, logical and procedural safeguards to accomplish those goals.
  2. Information security management enables information to be shared while ensuring the protection of that information and its associated computer assets including the networks over which the information travels. SUNY Oneonta designated staff are responsible for ensuring that appropriate physical, logical and procedural controls are in place on these assets to preserve the information security properties of confidentiality, integrity, availability, and privacy of SUNY Oneonta information.

Individual Accountability

Individual accountability is the cornerstone of any information security program. Without it, there can be no information security. Individual accountability is required when accessing all SUNY Oneonta resources.

  • Access to campus computer systems and networks must be provided through the use of individually assigned unique computer identifiers, known as user-IDs.
  • Individuals who use campus computers must only access information assets to which he or she is authorized.
  • Associated with each user-ID is an authentication token, such as a password, which must be used to authenticate the person accessing the data, system or network. Passwords, tokens or similar technology must be treated as confidential information, and must not be disclosed. Transmission of such authentication information must be made only over secure mechanisms.
  • Each individual is responsible to reasonably protect against unauthorized activities performed under his or her user-ID.
  • For the user’s protection, and for the protection of SUNY Oneonta resources, user-Ids and passwords (or other tokens or mechanisms used to uniquely identify an individual) must not be shared. In certain circumstances, where there is a clear requirement or system limitation, the use of a shared user-id for a group of users or a specific job can be used. Additional compensatory controls must be implemented to ensure accountability is maintained.

Confidentiality / Integrity / Availability

  1. All SUNY Oneonta information must be protected from unauthorized access to help ensure the information’s confidentiality and maintain its integrity. Information owners will secure information within their jurisdiction based on the information’s value, sensitivity to disclosure, consequences of loss or compromise, and ease of recovery. SUNY Oneonta will adopt policies and procedures to guide information owners in securing their information assets.
  2. Information will be readily available for authorized use when it is needed by users in the normal performance of their duties. Appropriate processes will be defined and implemented to ensure the reasonable and timely recovery of all the SUNY Oneonta information, applications and systems, regardless of computing platform, should that information become corrupted, destroyed, or unavailable for a defined period (ref to Section 8 - Operations Management Program, Information Backup section).

Section 4. Asset Classification and Control

  1. Information must be properly managed from its creation, through authorized use, to proper disposal and requires different levels of protection. Information will be classified based on its value, sensitivity, consequences of loss or compromise, and/or legal and retention requirements. Criteria for determining the sensitivity of information will include consideration of confidentiality, integrity, availability, privacy, safety, legal and retention compliance requirements.
  2. All information will have an information owner established within SUNY Oneonta’s lines of business who will be responsible for assigning the initial information classification, and make all decisions regarding controls, access privileges of users, and daily decisions regarding information management.
  3. Each classification will have a set or range of controls, designed to provide the appropriate level of protection of the information and its associated application software commensurate with the value of the information in that classification. Protective measures will address the above considerations with control categories that include: identification & authentication, access control, confidentiality, network security, host security, integrity, non-repudiation, monitoring, and compliance.

Privacy and Handling of Private Information

Privacy of personally identifiable information must be maintained consistent with laws, rules, and regulations. SUNY Oneonta's systems hold personal information (i.e., any information that is unique to any individual) to carry out the mission. The protection of the privacy of personal information is of utmost importance and the institution must protect the rights of privacy of all members of the SUNY Oneonta community. All SUNY Oneonta employees with access to personal information are required to respect the confidentiality of that personal information to the full extent of the law. Personal data, including information about employees, students, members of the public, organizations and business partners, collected and maintained by SUNY Oneonta must:

  • be consistent with the provisions of the Internet Security and Privacy Act, the Freedom of Information Law, FERPA, and the Personal Privacy Protection Law;
  • be used as authorized by law;
  • be gathered in a lawful manner;
  • be kept in a manner as required by law or regulations;
  • not be disclosed unless authorized or required by law;
  • be available for review by authorized individuals;
  • be corrected if errors are known to exist or if the individual identifies errors;
  • be erased where appropriate if the individual requests consistent with applicable laws; and
  • be protected using system access controls.

Section 5. Personnel Security

The intent of this section is to reduce the risk of human error and misuse of SUNY Oneonta information and facilities.

Including Information Security in Job Responsibilities

Information security roles and responsibilities must be documented. These roles and responsibilities will include general responsibilities for all SUNY Oneonta employees, as well as specific responsibilities for protecting specific information assets and performing tasks related to information security procedures or processes.

User Training

  1. All faculty, staff, and students must receive general information security awareness training to ensure they are knowledgeable of information security procedures, their roles and responsibilities regarding the protection of the SUNY Oneonta information assets, and the proper use of information processing facilities to minimize information security risks.
  2. Departments that process or maintain sensitive information are responsible for conducting specific information security awareness training for employees who handle such information in the course of their job duties. This training should include physical handling and disposition of non-electronic documents containing sensitive information as well as proper procedures to follow in processing and storing electronic information and documents.
  3. Login banners will be implemented on all systems where that feature exists to inform all users that the system is for the SUNY Oneonta business or other approved use consistent with the SUNY Oneonta mission.

Responding to Information Security Incidents and Malfunctions

  1. Incidents affecting information security must be reported as quickly as possible to one or more of the following: the information owner, the Information Technology (IT)Help Desk or the IT Security Administrator as appropriate.
  2. Formal incident reporting procedures that define the actions to be taken when an incident occurs must be established. Feedback mechanisms must be implemented to ensure that individuals reporting incidents are notified of the results after the incident has been resolved and closed.

Reporting Information Security Weaknesses

Users of information technologies shall report any observed or suspected information security weaknesses or threats to the appropriate manager and the IT Security Administrator. They must report these weaknesses as soon as possible. Users must not attempt to prove a suspected weakness unless authorized by SUNY Oneonta ISO to do so. Testing weaknesses could have unintended consequences.

Reporting Information Security Software Malfunctions

Users are required to report software malfunctions such as a virus not being detected, password change not accepted, etc. Users should report such malfunctions by calling the IT Help Desk. After the IT Help Desk is notified of the problem the following actions

  • will be taken:
  • the symptoms of the problem and any messages appearing on the screen will be documented;
  • the computer will be isolated, if possible, and use of it stopped until the problem has been resolved;
  • the incident will be reported immediately to the appropriate manager and the IT Security Administrator.

Incident Management Process

The logging of information security incidents will be used by SUNY Oneonta to identify recurring or high impact incidents and to record lessons learned. Review of this information may indicate the need for additional controls to limit the frequency, damage, and cost of future incidents.

Section 6. Physical and Environmental Information Security

Physical Security Barriers

  1. Breaching physical security can cause a loss of or damage to SUNY Oneonta information assets. Physical security will be achieved by creating physical barriers around the assets being protected. These barriers could be in the form of an entry point with card key access, a locked door, a staff member, or other physical barriers.
  2. SUNY Oneonta environments where servers are stored or operational, wiring closets for networks and telephony, printers where confidential or sensitive information may be printed, and any other areas that contain and or process critical or sensitive information must be secured against unauthorized access.
  3. SUNY Oneonta will perform periodic threat and risk analysis to determine where additional physical security measures are necessary and implement these measures to mitigate the risks.

Secure Disposal or Re-use of Equipment

There is a risk of disclosure of sensitive information through careless disposal or re-use of equipment. Storage devices such as hard disk drives and other magnetic media such as tape, containing sensitive information will be physically destroyed or securely overwritten to prevent the unauthorized disclosure of sensitive SUNY Oneonta information.

Clear Screen

Desktop, laptop and PDA computers connected to a network and/or containing sensitive or confidential SUNY Oneonta information must be automatically logged off or the screen locked within 30 minutes of inactivity.

Inventory Control

All institution-owned computer equipment will be tagged to identify SUNY Oneonta as the owner. An equipment inventory will be conducted annually by the Office of Property Management.

Section 7. Communications and Network Management

Network Management

SUNY Oneonta must implement a range of network controls to maintain security in its internal networks, and ensure the protection of connected services and networks. The access controls help prevent unauthorized access and use of SUNY Oneonta networks. The following controls, at a minimum, should be implemented:• Operational responsibility for networks will be separate from computer operations when possible;• Responsibilities and procedures for remote use must be established (refer to Section 9. Access Control section of this document);• When necessary, special controls will be implemented to safeguard data integrity and confidentiality of data passing over public networks (Internet).

Host Scanning

Any devices connected to a network will be scanned periodically to ensure that no major vulnerabilities have been introduced into the environment. The frequency of scans will be determined by the SUNY Oneonta ISO.

Network Security Checking

  1. Network vulnerability scanning will be conducted periodically at the discretion of the IT Security Administrator. The output of the scans will be reviewed in a timely manner, and any vulnerability detected will be evaluated for risk and mitigated. The tools used to scan for vulnerabilities will be updated periodically to ensure that recently discovered vulnerabilities are included in any scans.
  2. A process to perform the scanning will be defined by SUNY Oneonta, tested and followed at all times to minimize the possibility of disruption to networks by such reviews. Reports of exposures to vulnerabilities will be forwarded to the SUNY Oneonta ISO and IT Security Administrator.
  3. All connections to SUNY Oneonta networks must be authenticated.
  4. The use of any network vulnerability scanning tools, whether internal or external, by individuals who are not part of the formal test process described above, is prohibited. Any vulnerability scanning from the Internet must be conducted exclusively by SUNY Oneonta ’s authorized, qualified staff or qualified third party.

Internet and Electronic Mail Acceptable Use

When SUNY Oneonta faculty, staff and students connect to the Internet using any SUNY Oneonta Internet address designation or send electronic mail using the SUNY Oneonta designation, it should be consistent with the SUNY Oneonta mission. Campus equipment, systems, facilities, and supplies must be used only for conducting activities consistent with the SUNY Oneonta mission. Users are visible representatives of the institution and must use the Internet and e-mail system in a legal, professional and responsible manner. The following is not an all-inclusive list and provides only examples of behavior that is not acceptable. Specifically, the Internet and electronic mail will not be used:

  • for personal gain or profit;
  • to represent yourself as someone else (i.e.“spoofing”);
  • for spamming;
  • for unauthorized attempts to break into any computing system whether the institution’s or another organization’s (i.e., cracking or hacking);
  • for theft or unauthorized copying of electronic files;
  • for posting sensitive SUNY Oneonta information without authorization from the institution and without protective measures such as encryption
  • for mass distribution without SUNY Oneonta's authorization, such as “chain letters”;
  • for non-business communication using “instant messaging” or similar technology;
  • for “sniffing” (i.e., monitoring network traffic), except for those authorized to do so as part of their job responsibilities.

External Internet and VPN Connections

  1. A computer that is connected to a SUNY Oneonta network cannot also be connected to a non-SUNY Oneonta network via dial-up access using a modem unless specifically authorized by the SUNY Oneonta ISO. For example, users that subscribe to third-party Internet service providers like AOL cannot connect to AOL via a modem at the same time they are connected to a SUNY Oneonta network.
  2. Any connection over a public network (i.e. Internet) that involves sensitive information must use a Virtual Private Network (VPN) or other equivalent encryption technology to ensure the privacy and integrity of the data passing over the public network.

Portable Computers

  1. All portable computing resources and information media must be secured to prevent compromise of confidentiality or integrity. No computer device may store or transmit sensitive information without suitable protective measures being implemented and approved by the SUNY Oneonta ISO.
  2. When using mobile computing facilities such as notebooks, palmtops, laptops and mobile phones, special care must be taken to ensure that information is not compromised. Users of mobile computing are responsible for physical protection, access controls, cryptographic techniques, back-ups, virus protection and the rules associated with connecting mobile facilities to networks and guidance on the use of these facilities in public places. In cases where sensitive information is concerned: Care must be taken when using mobile computing facilities in public places, meeting rooms and other unprotected areas outside of SUNY Oneonta 's premises. Protection must be in place to avoid the unauthorized access to or disclosure of the information stored and processed by these facilities, e.g. using cryptographic techniques. It is important that when such facilities are used in public places care must be taken to avoid the risk of unauthorized persons viewing information on-screen. Equipment carrying important and/or sensitive information must not be left unattended and, where possible, must be physically locked away, or special locks must be used to secure the equipment. Training must be provided to staff using mobile computing resources to raise their awareness of the additional risks resulting from this way of working and the controls that will be implemented. Employees in the possession of portable, laptop, notebook, palmtop, and other transportable computers must not check these computers in airline luggage systems. These computers must remain in the possession of the traveler as hand luggage unless other arrangements are required by Federal or State authorities. For all portable computers such as laptops, notebooks, etc, the use of a “bootup” or power-on password must be implemented. For those computers containing sensitive information, data encryption techniques may also be employed.

Telephones and Fax Equipment

The use of telephones outside SUNY Oneonta for business reasons is sometimes

necessary, but it can create security exposures. Examples of best practices:

  • take care that they are not overheard when discussing confidential matters;
  • avoid the use of any wireless or cellular phones when discussing sensitive or confidential information;
  • avoid leaving sensitive or confidential messages on non-SUNY Oneonta voicemail systems;
  • if sending sensitive or confidential documents via fax, verify the phone number of the destination fax. Contact the recipient to ensure the protection of the fax, either by having it picked up quickly or by ensuring that the fax output is in a secure area;
  • avoid using Internet fax services to send or receive sensitive or confidential information;
  • not use third-party fax services to send or receive sensitive or confidential information;
  • not send sensitive or confidential documents via wireless fax devices;
  • when chairing a sensitive or confidential teleconference, confirm that all participants are authorized to participate, before starting any discussion.

Wireless Networks

  1. Wireless technology and pervasive devices create opportunities for new and innovative uses. SUNY Oneonta information systems can be exposed to compromise or to a loss of service if security risks are not addressed correctly.
  2. Wireless technology is a shared medium. Everything that is transmitted over the radio waves can be intercepted if the interceptor is within the coverage area of the radio transmitters. This represents a potential security issue in the wireless Local Area Networks (LANs). The security exposure is more evident in public areas, such as the Library, Residence Halls, and the Student Union.
  3. Suitable controls such as authentication and encryption will be implemented by Telecommunications to reduce the possibility that a wireless network or access point can be exploited to disrupt SUNY Oneonta information services or to gain unauthorized access to SUNY Oneonta information.
  4. A Wireless Communications Policy will be established to address these issues.

Modem Usage

  1. Using modems to connect to a network can create security risks. When using a modem and a computer that contains sensitive SUNY Oneonta information the following best practices apply:
    1. For Outbound Service (Configured for outgoing calls only):
      • modems must not be left connected to computers in auto-answer mode, such that they are able to receive incoming dial-up calls;
      • communications systems must not be established that accept incoming dial-up calls;
      • under no circumstances will a user attempt to add a remote access server to a SUNY Oneonta network.
    2. For Inbound Service (Configured for a modem to accept incoming calls only):
      • all dial-up modem phone numbers are confidential and must be made available only to authorized users;
      • only under extreme conditions should a computer have remote control software and dial-in capability;
      • dial-up modems must be configured to answer calls on the fourth ring;
      • system configuration will be set to disconnect after three unsuccessful password attempts;
      • session limits of three hours and inactivity timeouts of 30 minutes will be placed on all sessions.

Public Websites

  1. The World Wide Web provides an opportunity for SUNY Oneonta both to disseminate information and to provide interactive services quickly and effectively. Because anything posted on a public web server is globally available and each web presence is a potential connection path to the SUNY Oneonta networks, care will be exercised in the deployment of publicly accessible servers. There is also the potential for an insecure server to be used or exploited to assist in an unauthorized or illegal activity, such as an attack on another website.
  2. Sensitive or confidential information will not be made available through a server that is available to a public network without appropriate safeguards approved by the SUNY Oneonta ISO. The ISO will implement safeguards to ensure user authentication, data confidentiality and integrity, access control, data protection, and logging mechanisms.
  3. The implementation of any website or software that interacts with the user, requires registration, collects or processes information from users is considered to be application development and, therefore, must be audited and approved by the SUNY Oneonta ISO to ensure that the collection and processing of information meets SUNY Oneonta information security and privacy requirements. The review will ensure that the information is adequately protected while in transit over public and SUNY Oneonta networks, while in storage, and while being processed.
  4. All official websites will comply with Federal and state legal requirements.

Electronic Signatures

Electronic signatures including digital signatures provide a means of protecting the authenticity and integrity of electronic documents. They can be used in electronic transactions where there is a need for a signature. New York State's Electronic Signatures and Records Act (ESRA) provides that electronic signatures are equivalent to hand-written signatures. SUNY Oneonta will comply with the Electronic Signatures and Records Act (ESRA), FERPA, and any other State or Federal regulations regarding electronic signatures.

Section 8. Operations Management

Incident Management Procedures

  1. All users of SUNY Oneonta information systems must be made aware of the procedure for reporting information security incidents, threats, weaknesses, or malfunctions that may have an impact on the security of SUNY Oneonta information. All SUNY Oneonta staff and contractors are required to report any observed or suspected incidents to the appropriate manager and the SUNY Oneonta ISO as quickly as possible.
  2. Incident management responsibilities must be documented and procedures must be clearly defined to ensure a quick, effective and orderly response to information security incidents. At a minimum, these procedures must address:
    • information system failures and loss of service;
    • denial of service;
    • errors resulting from incomplete or inaccurate data;
    • breaches of confidentiality;
    • loss of integrity of the software or other system component.
  3. In addition to normal contingency plans designed to recover applications, systems or services, the incident response procedures must also cover: analysis and identification of the cause of the incident; planning and implementation of corrective actions to prevent reoccurrence; collection of audit log information; communication with those affected by or involved in the recovery from the incident.
  4. SUNY Oneonta management and ISO will investigate all information security incidents and implement corrective actions to reduce the risk of reoccurrence.

Segregation of Duties

To reduce the risk of accidental or deliberate system misuse, separation of duties or areas of responsibility must be implemented where practical. Where appropriate, including where the separation of duties is not practical, other compensatory controls such as monitoring of activities, audit trails and management supervision must be implemented.

Separation of Test and Operational Facilities

  1. Separation of the development, test, and operational environments will be implemented, either logically or physically, when feasible. Processes must be documented and implemented to govern the transfer of software from the development environment to the operational platform.
  2. Separation must also be implemented between development and test functions. SUNY Oneonta must consider the use of a stable quality assurance environment where user testing can be conducted and changes cannot be made to the programs being tested. The following controls must be considered: development and operational software must, where possible, run on different computer processors, or in different domains or directories; development and testing activities must be separated; compilers, editors and other system utilities must not be accessible from operational systems when not required; different log-on procedures should be used for operational, test and development systems, to reduce the risk of error. Users will be encouraged to use different passwords for these systems, and menus should display appropriate identification messages; programming staff will only have access to operational passwords where controls are in place for issuing passwords for the support of operational systems.

Protection Against Malicious Software

Software and associated controls must be implemented across SUNY Oneonta systems to prevent and detect the introduction of malicious software. The introduction of malicious software such as computer viruses, network worms, and Trojan horses can cause serious damage to networks, workstations, and data. Users must be made aware of the dangers of unauthorized or malicious software. Anti-virus software will be installed on all computers connected to a SUNY Oneonta network. At a minimum, the virus signature files for this software must be updated weekly. On host systems or servers, the signature files will be updated daily or when the virus software vendor’s signature files are updated and published.

Software Maintenance

All purchased applications and systems software must be maintained at a vendor supported level to ensure software accuracy and integrity. Maintenance of SUNY Oneonta developed software will be logged to ensure changes are authorized, tested and accepted by SUNY Oneonta management. Also, all known information security patches must be reviewed and applied in a timely manner to reduce the risk of security incidents that could affect the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of data or software integrity.

Information Backup

The scope of this program is limited to the IT infrastructure, and the data and applications of the local SUNY Oneonta environment. To ensure interruptions to normal SUNY Oneonta operations are minimized, and critical institution applications and processes are protected from the effects of major failures, each SUNY Oneonta unit, in cooperation with the SUNY Oneonta IT organization, must develop plans that can meet the backup requirements of the SUNY Oneonta. Backups of critical data and software must be performed regularly.

System Security Checking

  1. Systems and services that process or store sensitive or confidential information or provide support for critical processes must undergo technical security reviews to ensure compliance with implementation standards and to assess vulnerabilities to subsequently discovered threats. Reviews of systems and services that are essential to supporting a critical SUNY Oneonta function must be conducted at least once every year. Reviews of a presentative sample of all other systems and services must be conducted periodically.
  2. Any deviations from expected or required results that are detected by the technical security review process must be reported to the SUNY Oneonta ISO and corrected immediately. In addition, the SUNY Oneonta application owner should be advised of the deviations and must initiate an investigation of the deviations (including the review of system activity log records if necessary).

Disposal of Media

Sensitive information could be leaked to outside persons through careless disposal of media. Formal processes must be established to minimize this risk. Media such as tapes, diskettes, servers, mainframe and PC hard drives, and mobile devices such as phones, PDAs or USB drives containing sensitive SUNY Oneonta data must be destroyed by incineration, shredding, or electronic erasure of data before disposal, consistent with applicable record retention and disposition laws.

Section 9. Access Control

  1. To preserve the properties of integrity, confidentiality, and availability, SUNY Oneonta ’s information assets will be protected by logical and physical access control mechanisms commensurate with the value, sensitivity, consequences of loss or compromise, legal requirements, and ease of recovery of these assets.
  2. Information owners are responsible for determining who should have access to information assets within their jurisdiction, and what those access privileges will be(read, update, etc.). These access privileges will be granted in accordance with the user’s job responsibilities.

User Registration and Management

  1. A process shall be established by SUNY Oneonta to outline and identify all functions of user management, to include the generation, distribution, modification, and deletion of user accounts for access to resources. The purpose of this process is to ensure that only authorized individuals have access to SUNY Oneonta applications and information and that these users only have access to the resources required for authorized purposes.
  2. The User Management Process should include the following sub-processes:
    • enrolling new users;
    • removing user-ids;
    • granting “privileged accounts” to a user;
    • removing “privileged accounts” from a user;
    • periodic reviewing “privileged accounts” of users;
    • periodic reviewing of users enrolled in any system; and
    • assigning a new authentication token (e.g. password reset processing).
  3. In most cases, the appropriate information owner or supervisor will make requests for the registration and granting of access rights for employees. In some cases, access can be automatically granted or taken away based on employment status.
  4. For applications that interact with individuals that are not employed by SUNY Oneonta, the information owner is responsible for ensuring an appropriate user management process is implemented. Standards for the registration of such external users must be defined, to include the credentials that must be provided to prove the identity of the user requesting registration, validation of the request and the scope of access that may be provided.

Privileged Account Management

  1. The issuance and use of privileged accounts will be restricted to only those individuals necessary in the normal performance of their job responsibilities. All individuals (systems programmers, database administrators, network and information security administrators, etc.) will have a unique privileged account (user-ID) for their personal and sole use so that activities can be traced to the responsible person. User ids must not give any indication of the user’s privilege level, e.g., supervisor, manager, administrator. These individuals should also have a second user-ID when performing normal transactions, such as when accessing the campus e-mail system.
  2. In certain circumstances, where there is a clear requirement or system limitation, the use of a shared user-id for a group of users or a specific job can be used. Additional compensatory controls must be implemented to ensure accountability is maintained.
  3. Passwords of privileged accounts should be changed at least every 90 days.

User Password Management

  1. Passwords are a common means of authenticating a user’s identity to access an information system or service. Password standards will be implemented to ensure all authorized individuals accessing SUNY Oneonta resources follow proven password management practices. These password rules must be mandated by automated system controls whenever possible.
  2. To ensure good password management, the following password standards will be implemented where feasible:
    • A password cannot be the same as user-id;
    • password length minimum of 8 characters;
    • strong passwords including alpha and numeric characters;
    • maximum password age 180 days;
    • minimum password age 7 days;
    • password uniqueness equal to five (5);
    • lockout account after an appropriate number of failed login attempts;
    • password lockout duration – 60 minutes, or until reset by an authorized person;
    • passwords should not be written down;
    • passwords must be kept confidential – they must not be shared with another
    • user;
    • temporary passwords must be changed at the first login;
  3. A user who needs a password reset must be authenticated before the request is granted.

Network Access Control

Access to SUNY Oneonta’s internal networks must require all authorized users to authenticate themselves through use of an individually assigned user-id and an authentication mechanism, e.g., password, token or smart card, or digital certificate. Network controls must be developed and implemented that ensure that an authorized user can access only those network resources and services necessary to perform their assigned job responsibilities.

User Authentication for External Connections (Remote Access Control)

  1. To maintain information security, SUNY Oneonta requires that individual accountability be maintained at all times, including during remote access. For the purposes of this program, “remote access” is defined as any access coming into a SUNY Oneonta network from a non-SUNY Oneonta network. This includes, but is not limited to: dialing in from another location over public lines by an employee or other authorized individual for the purpose of telecommuting or working from home; connecting a third party network via dial or other temporary access technology to the SUNY Oneonta networks;
  2. Connection to SUNY Oneonta’s networks must be done in a secure manner to preserve the integrity of the networks, data transmitted over those networks, and the availability of those networks. Security mechanisms must be in place to control access to the institution's systems and networks remotely from fixed or mobile locations.
  3. Because of the level of risk inherent with remote access, use of a strong password or another comparable method is required prior to connecting to a SUNY Oneonta network.
  4. When accessing SUNY Oneonta networks remotely, identification and authentication of the entity requesting access must be performed in such a manner as to not disclose the password or other authentication information that could be intercepted and used by a third party.
  5. Use of a common access point is required. This means that all remote connections to a computer must be made through managed central points-of-entry. Using this type of entry system to access the SUNY Oneonta computer provides many benefits, including simplified and cost-effective information security, maintenance, and support.
  6. For a vendor to access SUNY Oneonta computers or software, individual accountability is also required. For those systems (hardware or software) for which there is a built-in user-id for the vendor to perform maintenance, the account must be disabled until the user-id is needed. The activity performed while this vendor user-id is in use must be logged. When the vendor has completed his work, the vendor user-id should be disabled, or the password changed to prevent unauthorized use of this privileged account. Vendor user-ids will be named to be easily identifiable.
  7. In the special case where servers, storage devices or other computer equipment has the capability to automatically connect to a vendor to report problems or suspected problems, the SUNY Oneonta Information Security Administrator must review any such connection to ensure that connectivity does not compromise the SUNY Oneonta networks.
  8. Employees working from a remote location must ensure that the work environment at the remote location provides adequate information security for SUNY Oneonta data and computing resources. Appropriate protection mechanisms must be in place at the remote location to protect against theft of the equipment, unauthorized disclosure of SUNY Oneonta information, misuse of campus equipment or unauthorized access to the SUNY Oneonta internal networks or other facilities. To ensure the proper information security controls are in place and all SUNY Oneonta information security standards are followed, the following must be considered: the existing physical security of the remote location, considering the physical security of the building and the local environment; the communications security requirements, considering the need for remote access to SUNY Oneonta's internal systems, the sensitivity of the information that will be accessed and transmitted over the communication link and the sensitivity of the internal system; the threat of unauthorized access to information or resources from other people using the accommodation, e.g. family and friends.
  9. The following controls must be considered but are not limited to:
    • the provision of suitable communication equipment, including methods for securing remote access and authentication tokens;
    • anti-virus software and method for maintaining current signature files;
    • implementation of suitable network boundary controls to prevent unauthorized information exchange between SUNY Oneonta networks connected to remote computers and externally connected networks, such as the Internet. Such measures include firewalls, VPN’s and intrusion detection techniques;
    • encryption of sensitive information in transit and on the local computer workstation;
    • physical security;
    • rules and guidance on family and visitor access to equipment and information;
    • the provision of hardware and software support and maintenance;
    • the procedures for back-up;
    • audit and information security monitoring;
    • revocation of authority, access rights and the return of equipment when the remote access activities cease.

Segregation of Networks

Routers, Firewalls, VPN’s or other technologies should be implemented to control access to secured resources on the SUNY Oneonta networks.

Monitoring System Access and Use

Systems and applications must be monitored and analyzed to detect deviation from the access control program and record events to provide evidence and to reconstruct lost or damaged data. Audit logs recording exceptions and other information security-relevant events must be produced and kept consistent with record retention schedules developed in cooperation with the State Archives and Records Administration (SARA) and SUNY Oneonta requirements to assist in future investigations and access control monitoring. Audit logs will include but are not limited to:

  • user-ids;
  • dates and times for login and logoff;
  • terminal identity or location if possible; and
  • records of successful and rejected system access attempts.

Section 10. Systems Development and Maintenance

  1. Software applications are developed or acquired to provide efficient solutions to SUNY Oneonta problems. These applications generally store, manipulate, retrieve and display information used to conduct SUNY Oneonta business. The SUNY Oneonta units become dependent on these applications, and it is essential the data processed by these applications be accurate, and readily available for authorized use. It is also critical that the software that performs these activities be protected from unauthorized access or tampering.
  2. To ensure that information security is built into all SUNY Oneonta information systems, all security requirements, including the need for rollback arrangements, must be documented.
  3. Information security requirements and controls must reflect the value of the information assets involved and the potential damage that might result from a failure or absence of information security measures. This is especially critical for online applications. The framework for analyzing the information security requirements and identifying controls to meet them is associated with threat assessment and risk management which must be performed by the SUNY Oneonta ISO and the information owner.

Control of Internal Processing

Data which have been entered correctly can be corrupted by processing errors or through deliberate acts. Application design must ensure that controls are implemented to minimize the risk of processing failures leading to a loss of data or system integrity. Specific areas to consider include: the use and location in programs of add and delete functions to implement changes to data; the procedures to prevent programs running in the wrong order or running after a failure of prior processing; the use of correction programs to recover from failures to ensure the correct processing of data.

Cryptographic Controls

Use of cryptography for protection of high-risk information must be considered when other controls do not provide adequate protection. Encryption is a technique that can be used to protect the confidentiality of information. It must be considered for the protection of sensitive or critical information. Based on a risk assessment, the required level of protection will be identified taking into account the type and quality of the encryption algorithm used and the length of cryptographic keys employed.

Change Control Procedures

  1. To minimize the possibility of corruption of information systems, strict controls over changes to information systems must be implemented. Formal change control procedures for applications must be developed, implemented and enforced. They must ensure that information security and control procedures are not compromised, that support programmers are given access only to those parts of a system necessary to perform their jobs, and that formal agreement and approval processes for changes are implemented. These change control procedures will apply to SUNY Oneonta applications as well as systems software used to maintain operating systems, network software, hardware changes, etc.
  2. In addition, access to source code libraries for both SUNY Oneonta applications and operating systems must be tightly controlled to ensure that only authorized individuals have access to these libraries and that access is logged to ensure all access can be monitored.

Section 11. Compliance

The designs, operation, use and management of information systems are subject to legal and vendor contractual information security requirements.

Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act

  1. The Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLBA) requires “financial institutions” as defined by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), to protect and secure customer information such as names, Social Security numbers, addresses, account and credit card information. The GLBA sets forth extensive privacy rules which SUNY Oneonta is deemed to be in compliance with because of its adherence to the provisions of the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). The GLBA also establishes a Safeguards Rule, from which SUNY Oneonta is not exempt, that requires the institution to protect and safeguard customer information.

Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard

  1. The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) requires any entity that collects credit card data to protect customer data and card numbers through security management, policies, procedures, network architecture, software design and other critical protective measures. SUNY Oneonta will comply with the PCI DSS.

Safeguarding of Records

  1. SUNY Oneonta records must be protected from loss, destruction or unauthorized modification. Some records may need to be retained in a secure manner for extended periods to meet state and Federal legal retention requirements, as well as to support essential operations.
  2. The General Retention and Disposition Schedule for New York State Government Records contains guidelines for complying with legal, fiscal, and administrative requirements for records retention and provides advice on management of records. SUNY Oneonta will develop procedures to dispose of any records in accordance with the provisions of Section 57.05 of Arts and Cultural Affairs Law. New York State Archives and Records Administration (SARA) issues general schedules to authorize the retention and disposition of records.
  3. Safeguards that will be taken to protect customer information include the following: Computer access will be limited by user ID’s and passwords Customer information stored in file cabinets will be accessible only to staff in offices who need access and will be locked when not in use Offices that have access to customer information will be locked after hours Customer data will be backed up routinely Passwords will expire periodically and employees must then reset them Passwords will not be posted in publicly viewable places Intrusion detection systems will monitor SUNY Oneonta networks to allow the prompt detection of attacks and intrusions Vulnerability scanning of systems containing customer information will be conducted periodically Antivirus protection will be maintained on all computer systems Designated staff members will supervise the disposal of records containing customer information Erase all data when disposing of computers, diskettes, magnetic tapes, hard drives or any other electronic media that contains customer information Inventories of all computer systems will be maintained Reduce paper forms and documents through increased electronic access to this information Implement measures to ensure unauthorized persons cannot access SUNY Oneonta computer systems when left unattended Avoid using Social Security numbers as a primary identification number

Prevention of Misuse of Information Technology Resources

The information technology resources and the data processed by these resources are provided for SUNY Oneonta purposes. Management should authorize their use. Any use of IT facilities or data for non-SUNY Oneonta or unauthorized purposes, without management’s consent, should be considered a misuse of campus facilities.


  1. Compliance with this IT Security program is mandatory. Each user must understand his/her role and responsibilities regarding information security issues and protecting SUNY Oneonta’s information assets. The failure to comply with this or any other information security program that results in the compromise of SUNY Oneonta information confidentiality, integrity, privacy, and/or availability may result in appropriate action as permitted by law, rule, regulation or negotiated agreement. The institution will take every reasonable step necessary, including legal and administrative measures, to protect its information assets.
  2. The SUNY Oneonta Information Security Officer shall review this document annually. If significant changes are needed the ISO shall propose the changes to the President’s Cabinet.
  3. SUNY Oneonta managers and supervisors will ensure that all information security processes and procedures within their areas of responsibility are followed. In addition, all units within SUNY Oneonta may be subject to regular reviews to ensure compliance within formation security policies and standards. Areas, where compliance with the program requirements is not met, will be documented and reported to SUNY Oneonta ’s information security Officer. For each area of non-compliance, a plan will be developed to address the deficiencies.


Authenticity: This is the exchange of security information to verify the claimed identity of a communications partner. In security terms, it is particularly to counter attempts to masquerade as an authorized user to enable new connections or associations.

Authorization: The granting of rights, which includes the granting of access based on an authenticated identity.

Availability: This is the ‘property’ of being available and usable upon demand by an authorized entity, e.g. a system or user.

Classification: The designation given to information or a document from a defined category on the basis of its sensitivity to disclosure, modification or destruction.

Computer: All physical, electronic and other components, types and uses of computers, including but not limited to hardware, software, central processing units, electronic communications and systems, databases, memory, Internet service, information systems, laptops, Personal Digital Assistants and accompanying equipment used to support the use of computers, such as printers, fax machines and copiers, and any updates, revisions, upgrades or replacements thereto.

Confidentiality: The property that information is not made available or disclosed to unauthorized individuals, entities, or processes.

Controls: Countermeasures or safeguards that are the devices or mechanisms that are needed to meet the requirements of a program.

Cracking or Hacking: Attempting to break into another system in which you have no account, and is treated as malicious intent.

Critical: A condition, vulnerability or threat that could cause danger to data, a system, network, or a component thereof.

Customer: Faculty, staff, students and others conducting business with SUNY Oneonta.

Data: The collection of information assets complied, generated or maintained to support SUNY Oneonta.

Denial of Service: An attack that takes up so much of SUNY Oneonta’s resources that it results in degradation of performance or loss of access to the company’s business services or resources.

Disaster: A condition in which an information asset is unavailable, as a result of a natural or man-made occurrence, that is of sufficient duration to cause significant disruption in the accomplishment of SUNY Oneonta’s objectives as determined by SUNY Oneonta management.

Encryption: The cryptographic transformation of data to render it unintelligible through an algorithmic process using a cryptographic key.

Firewall: A security mechanism that creates a barrier between an internal network and an external network.

GLBA: The Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act was passed by Congress in 1999 to protect the privacy and security of customer financial information.

Host: A system or computer that contains business and/or operational software and/or data. Incident Response: The manual and automated procedures used to respond to reported network intrusions (real or suspected); network failures and errors; and other undesirable events.

Information: Information is defined as the representation of facts, concepts, or instructions in a formalized manner suitable for communication, interpretation, or processing by human or automated means.

Information Assets: All categories of automated information, including but not limited to: records, files, and databases; and, information technology facilities, equipment (including microcomputer systems), and software owned or leased by the State.

Information Owner: An individual or organizational unit having responsibility for making classification and control decisions regarding the use of information.

Information Security: The protection of automated information from accidental or intentional unauthorized access, modification, destruction, or disclosure.

Instant Messaging (IM): The ability to exchange short messages online with co-workers or others. IM solutions can take several forms. They can use an existing Internet-based service, or they can bean Intranet only solution implemented and controlled within an IT department. The latter is significantly more secure than the former but lacks access to business partners.

Integrity: The property that data has not been altered or destroyed from its intended form or content in an unintentional or an unauthorized manner.

Internet: This shall mean a system of linked computer networks, international in scope, that facilitate data transmission and exchange, which all use the standard Internet protocol, TCP/IP, to communicate and share data among each other.

Intranet: The Intranet is an internal (i.e., non-public) network that uses the same technology and protocols as the Internet.

Intrusion Detection: The monitoring of network activities, primarily through automated measures, to detect, log and report upon actual or suspected authorized access and events for investigation and resolution.

ISO: Information Security Officer

Non-Repudiation: un-forgeable evidence that a specific action occurred. This action could be the transmission of an electronic message, the competition of a transaction, or some other action. PCI DSS: The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard was adopted to assure the protection of customer data and credit card numbers.

Physical Security: The protection of information processing equipment from damage, destruction or theft; information processing facilities from damage, destruction or unauthorized entry; and personnel from potentially harmful situations.

Privacy: The right of individuals and organizations to control the collection, storage, and dissemination of information about themselves.

Privileged Account: The user-ID or account of an individual whose job responsibilities require special system authorization, such as a network administrator, security administrator, etc. Special authorizations are allocated to this account such as RACF Administrator, auditor, Special or UNIX root.

Procedures: Specific operational steps that individuals must take to achieve goals stated in this program.

Remote Access Server (RAS): A server that allows users to gain access to a LAN from a remote location. Once a user has authenticated he can access network resources as if he were physically connected to the LAN.

Risk: The likelihood or probability that a loss of information assets or breach of security will occur.

Risk Assessment: The process of identifying threats to information or information systems, determining the likelihood of occurrence of the threat, and identifying system vulnerabilities that could be exploited by the threat.

Risk Management: The process of taking actions to assess risks and avoid or reduce risk to acceptable levels.

Security Management: The responsibility and actions required to manage the security environment including the security policies and mechanisms.

Security Program: The set of criteria for the provision of security services based on global rules imposed for all users. These rules usually rely on a comparison of the sensitivity of the resources being accessed and the possession of corresponding attributes of users, a group of users, or entities acting on behalf of users.

Sensitivity: This, in terms of confidentiality, would cause a negative impact on the organization if the information were leaked or disclosed.

Sniffing: Monitoring network traffic.

Spamming: Blindly posting something to a large number of groups.

Spoofing: Representing yourself as someone else.

Standard: Sets of rules for implementing a program. Standards make specific mention of technologies, methodologies, implementation procedures and other detail factors.

State: Shall mean the State of New York.

The Institution: The State University of New York at Oneonta

Technical Security Review: A technical security review would consist of reviewing the controls built into a system or application to ensure they still perform as designed. It would also include reviewing security patches to ensure they have been installed and are operational, review of security rules such as access control lists for currency, testing of firewall rules, etc.

Third Party: Any non-institution entity such as a contractor, vendor, consultant, another college or university, etc.

Threat: A threat is a force, organization or person, which seeks to gain access to, or compromise, information. A threat can be assessed in terms of the probability of an attack. Looking at the nature of the threat, its capability and resources, one can assess it, and then determine the likelihood of occurrence, as in risk assessment.

Trojan Horse: Illegal code hidden in a legitimate program that when executed performs some unauthorized activity or function.

Unauthorized Access Or Privileges: Insider or outsider who gains access to network or computer resources without permission.

USENET Newsgroup: A USENET newsgroup is a bulletin board where people can read or post Net news messages on specific topics. There are many specialized business newsgroups. Many newsgroups are subscribed to by experts in the given topic and these individuals can provide valuable information and will sometimes respond to direct queries.

User: One who has authorized access to information on a computer. The authorization may include the ability to add or update information as well as access.

Virus: Any security threat that executes in a manner so that computer resources are damaged, lost or otherwise occupied so they are unavailable.

VPN: Virtual Private Network. Internet protocol (IP) virtual private networks (VPNs) are a collection of technologies that ensure the privacy of data over a shared unsecured IP network infrastructure. The two key points as to what constitutes an IP VPN are privacy and an IP network.

Vulnerability: A weakness of a system or facility holding information which can be exploited to gain access. A vulnerability can be assessed in terms of the means by which the attack would be successful.

World Wide Web (WWW): The World Wide Web is a hypertext-based system designed to allow access to information in such a way that the information, may physically reside on locally or geographically different servers. This access was greatly improved through the introduction of a graphical interface to the World Wide Web called a web browser. Netscape and Internet Explorer are two of the most popular web browsers.

Worm: A program similar to a virus that can consume large quantities of network bandwidth and spread from one network to another.

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