Enforcement of Campus Network Acceptable Use Policy to eliminate private network hubs at departments

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ITS encountered network incidents that were caused by the improper connection of unauthorized user hubs from time to time. The incidents affected the network access of other users in the same building. In general, unauthorized user hubs may cause the following issues:

  • unstable and degraded network performance
  • network outage if network looping occurs
  • complicate the trouble-shooting process
  • cause service interruption to the department if the self-installed network hub is blocked from connecting to campus network due to network incident.

According to Campus Network Acceptable Use Policy:

https://its.hku.hk/policies-and-guidelines/campus-network-acceptable-use-policy/

“4. Do NOT connect private network equipment to the network

You must not connect your own network equipment, such as network switches and other network sharing devices to the network connection points under the HKU Network. Such an act is strictly prohibited as it may affect the functioning and performance of the entire campus network. Any improperly configured equipment connected to the network may cause the total collapse of the network.”

In view of the above, it is recommended to enforce the policy on not allowing private network hubs to connect to the HKU network in order to enhance security and performance of campus network

It is targeted that departments shall eliminate private network hubs being used in departments by 31 Dec 2023. After the target date (31 Dec 2023), access to HKU network from these network hubs will be blocked without further notice.

Departments please consider using the following alternatives:

  • Use WiFi connection if feasible
  • Install sufficient LAN network points
    (For shared network printer, it is recommended using LAN connection)

Requests for additional LAN network points and WiFi access points can be submitted via the following form:

CF71 – Additional/Relocation of Network Points

In the coming few weeks, we shall provide departmental IT representatives with a list of private network hubs that we can identify for their checking and follow-up. Please note that the list is for reference only and may not be exhaustive. Departments are advised to further check if necessary.

It is recommended that departments should consider reserving budget for network enhancement work, and also planning for network requirements while office renovation or moving to new offices. Departments are welcome to discuss with ITS about network requirements.

The above information was presented at the recent Faculty IT User Forum on 27 Jul 2022, and notification email has also been sent to IT representatives at Departmental PC/Network Support Coordination Group.

Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact the undersigned.

Many thanks for your help.

Ronald Leung
Network Operations Team, IT Services
hyleung@hku.hk
Tel: 3917 8593

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