Faculty, staff Baylor accounts turned off after failing to finish mandatory cybersecurity training

Photo illustration by Olivia Havre | Photographer

By Sarah Wang | Staff Writer

After failing to finish a mandatory cybersecurity training, 288 faculty and staff members were locked out of their Baylor accounts Tuesday morning.

Carl Flynn, director of marketing and communications for information technology and university libraries, said the initial pool of people who were required to complete the training included 3,831 faculty and staff members — 288 of whom failed to do so by the Nov. 11 deadline.

“It’s a mandatory training,” Flynn said. “We’ve stressed in the emails sent to faculty, staff and administrations that their Baylor IDs will be turned off if they failed to do it.”

Flynn said Information Technology Services (ITS) has sent three reminder notifications to faculty and staff members on different dates. The last one was sent Friday morning –– the last day to complete the training.

“We’ve worked with deans, chairs and managers to notify the staff and faculty members to finish the mandatory cybersecurity training,” Flynn said. “This is the consequence.”

Sharon Gripp, senior lecturer in the journalism department, is one of the 288 faculty and staff members who were locked out of their Baylor accounts. She said she first noticed that she couldn’t log in to her Baylor account during her first class in the morning and later found out she also couldn’t log in to the classroom desktop.

Gripp said her initial thought was that something went wrong with the computer. When she contacted HelpDesk, she said they told her it was an issue with login. She was then able to open her email and discovered there were emails from yesterday she had not yet read.

“In the email, it said you would be locked out of everything today if you didn’t finish the cybersecurity training, which I had not had an opportunity to complete yet,” Gripp said. “I thought it was just a reminder to do the cybersecurity training, which I thought I would do this weekend.”

Gripp said it was apparent there were a number of faculty and staff members who were not able to get into platforms like Canvas or classroom computers. She said it seemed like ITS was having to reload everybody’s credentials back into the system in batches.

“If they’re doing it in batches, that tells you a lot of people were not able to access their information, which is a problem because we need to be able to teach in the classroom,” Gripp said.

Gripp said the cybersecurity training could have waited until after the semester was over. She said locking faculty and staff members out of their Baylor accounts impacts students as well.

“I was very upset because I was not able to access the information in Canvas that I needed in order to be able to teach my first class this morning,” Gripp said.

According to Flynn, anyone who’s currently locked out of their Baylor account can contact HelpDesk by phone or email to reactivate their ID. They can then log in to their account to complete the cybersecurity training between now and Monday so as to avoid their ID being deactivated again.