Home » IT Services News » IT Services News No. 203 (Feb 2020) » Central IT Services for Facilitating Work from Home

Central IT Services for Facilitating Work from Home

Working from home is a measure for fighting COVID-19. The following is a summary of the IT services that are available for facilitating departments to arrange work by colleagues from home (or outside the University campus):

1. Zoom

Zoom is available for use by academic staff and students for supporting video conferencing between teachers and students as it would be needed for online teaching and learning.  Departments can also use Zoom for meetings over campus network or Internet.

Please click here for the video clip on an earlier training session on the use of Zoom conducted by them.

2. Virtual PC (VPC) Supports Remote Access

VPC is a good alternative to desktop office PCs.  To facilitate departments to provide PCs that are set up with proper security protection for their staff to work from home (or outside the campus), VPC can now support remote access outside the campus network through HKUVPN (user guide).  This function allows colleagues working off-campus to gain access to and work on the same VPC as if they work at their offices within the University premises.  By making use of VPC, departments and their staff would be able to save the effort and mitigate considerable risk of data security breaches in the requirement of copying data files from an office PC to a USB portable storage device when such files are required for the work to be done outside the campus.

Departments can complete CF85 to request VPC for staff use. The VPC facility does not require charges to departments. Its deployment would save much of the resource, effort and time of a department in the purchasing, network and security configuration, software installation, etc.  A VPC will come in the form of a small VPC box with connections to campus network, display and keyboard, and with the readily usable set-up of Windows 10 and a common set of software with a 100GB personal drive. 

3. HKU Virtual Private Network (HKUVPN)

HKUVPN is a secure network channel for students and staff members who are outside the campus to gain access to the University’s IT facilities that are not open to the public Internet, e.g. licensed web resources, central and faculty intranets, etc.  Please refer to the webpage - https://www.its.hku.hk/documentation/guide/network/remote/hkuvpn2fa for setting up access to HKUVPN with 2-Factor Authentication (2FA).  Most staff members have registered the use of 2FA.  For those who have not done so, please click here to register.

4. HKU Convene Meeting System

Departments can make use of the HKU Convene Meeting System to substitute the conventional ways of conducting meetings.  The System is an integrated solution which helps improve meeting efficiency and productivity through a mobile app for iOS and Android or a client software for Mac and Windows for supporting meeting preparation and proceedings.  All the documents uploaded to Convene are encrypted and only the meeting organizers and participants can view them.  Selectable watermark function is also available to ensure any meeting material that is confidential in nature will not fall into the wrong hands.  With HKU Convene Meeting System and Zoom mentioned above, holding synchronized meetings over network becomes a workable option. 

5. Information Security Protection Measures for Staff Home PC

Colleagues using home PCs for work should ensure that the PCs are securely protected against computer viruses and malware (steps to take).  They can download a copy of the Sophos Anti-Virus solution for installation on their home PCs that are used for work.

6. Call Forwarding of IP Phones

Departments using IP phones (3917 xxxx/3910 2xxx/3910 3xxx) can apply for using a self-service portal to set call forwarding of office phones of colleagues when they are away from the office.  Application can be submitted via CF78 (click PBX extension lines > Self-service portal).

For any questions on the above or the use of other central IT facilitates, please feel free to contact our Service Desk at ithelp@hku.hk or 3917 0123.

Idy Tang
User Services Team
Tel: 3917 6220
Email: tangky@hku.hk