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Hawk Drive gives employees secure way to store, share documents with colleagues

KU faculty, staff and student employees have a new, secure way to store files, share documents and collaborate on projects without cluttering their e-mail in-boxes.

Information Technology has announced the launch of Hawk Drive, a local version of Xythos document management software that allows users to securely share documents, track changes to files and access work remotely. Employees can store up to one gigabyte of documents of any format they need to share with colleagues on the service. All they need is a colleague’s e-mail address.

Hawk Drive will send e-mail notifications to employees that someone is sharing information with them. Employees can access it from any computer with Internet access. It is compatible with both Windows and Mac platforms and Internet Explorer and Firefox web browsers.

Users can form ad hoc groups, assign permissions for who can access information and create associated wikis to discuss files. The program can save all versions and drafts of a document to keep track of progress, and can alert users when changes are made.

The system allows collaboration throughout the university and with colleagues off campus as well. It is currently available to faculty and staff at the Lawrence campus and student employees. It will be made available to all students in the fall.

Files stored in Hawk Drive are encrypted and can be password protected. Its security features allow for storage of documents with sensitive data. Not only is it more secure than sharing files via e-mail, it doesn’t create problems of storage space in e-mail accounts.

“That’s a long-term benefit for both users who won’t have to send and save e-mails with large attachments and keep track of numerous messages and for IT, to ultimately reduce the size of e-mail attachments being stored and backed up,” said Julie Loats, co-director of Information Technology.

Hawk Drive is a component of Initiative One, a university-wide strategy to maximize KU’s information infrastructure through coordinated planning, purchasing and service delivery. Initiative One is led by Information Services.

Information Technology is offering training sessions for Hawk Drive. Sign up forms are available online. Training videos for Hawk Drive are here. Departments and groups can request custom training as well.

More information is available online.


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