Google MFA to be Implemented Starting March 22

SUNY Oswego is taking the next step to enhance campus digital security and protect personally identifiable information and intellectual property. In continuation of the multi-factor authentication (MFA) security initiative the campus has been undergoing with various SUNY Oswego digital applications, Campus Technology Services (CTS) will be enabling MFA on LakerApps, our Google suite of Gmail, Calendar, Drive, Classroom and associated collaboration applications such as Google Chat and Meet.

Implementation Schedule

The campus implementation will be staggered across various cohorts. Employees start opting-in at 8 a.m. March 22 with a completion date of March 31. Other cohorts including students, alumni, retirees, and departmental accounts are being scheduled and will be announced at a later date.

Implementation Details

Starting at 8 a.m. on Wednesday, March 22, employees will start receiving notifications to configure MFA when they login to any web-based Google app. Google MFA works differently than other MFA-enabled applications and will require a separate configuration. Options available are similar to ones you may already be using for other applications including a phone call, text message, or an app like the Microsoft Authenticator app.  Employees will have through March 31 to opt-in to the service.  

Once you have Google MFA enabled, please note the following:

  • When you login to your primary SUNY Oswego machine, you will be prompted for MFA the first time you login to a web-based Google app on that device. You can opt to “trust” that device which will stop prompting you for your MFA credentials on that device. You will still be asked for your password.

  • You will be prompted for Google MFA verification when you use other devices. If these devices are public computers or ones you do not use on a regular basis, it is recommended to not trust the device.

  • Podium computers in the classrooms can not be exempted from Google MFA.  Therefore, faculty or staff who teach in a classroom, and log in to Google on the podium computer, will be prompted each time. While you may be able to “trust” a podium computer, the computer will forget the setting by the next day. The exemption for other MFA-enabled applications such as Brightspace will continue.

  • Currently configured smartphones and tablets should not be impacted unless using Google apps through a web browser.

Additional Information

CTS will have more information and documentation available prior to March 22.  A future campus email will include those details. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please contact the CTS Help Desk during our normal business hours.

Looking ahead, AEFIS (the Assessment, Evaluation, Feedback and Intervention System) and the VPN (Virtual Private Network) will be next as CTS continues securing campus applications with MFA.  The schedule for those will be announced at a later date.