MailProtect 2.0, from Atomwide, is now in widespread service, offering new functionality, and protecting users in around 2,500 UK schools from email-borne spam, viruses, porn and abuse.
RBC, LA and school staff account holders using Atomwide USO, or LGfL USO, can log into their relevant MailProtect website at:
…and view a log of scanned messages relating to any of their personal email addresses that are authenticated via USO. The details of any emails blocked by MailProtect can be examined, and “false positives” can be released (unless they are believed to contain viruses). In addition, these users can add trusted senders to a personal “allow” list so that future messages are exempt from spam checks, and/or opt to receive daily “spam digest” emails which offer proactive notification about blocked messages.
USO Nominated Contacts with appropriate “mail domain administrator” permissions can use the same web site to release blocked messages on behalf of any of their users, and configure domain or establishment level “allow” lists.
More features are currently under development which we look forward to announcing over the coming weeks.
New for 2011: “USO-Mail List” from Atomwide offers enhancements to LGfL 2.0 StaffMail & LondonMail/SafeMail services now, with other regions to follow.
In response to the emerging need for ever-more sophisticated mailing list functionality in the email services supported by Atomwide, enhancements have now been developed that will initially offer schools in London the following benefits:
1. In Microsoft Exchange-based systems integrated with Unified Sign On, and hence specifically LGfL StaffMail, distribution lists can now appear in the main address book for each school rather than in the Public Folders. This makes them easier to find, and hence much easier to use. When enabled for the school, the mailing list service uses USO profile data to create the most frequently requested distribution lists. These include a list for all students, one for all staff, one for each year group and one for each class group (assuming in all cases that the school is exporting the relevant information from its MIS via USO-AutoUpdate). In addition, it remains possible for individual users to create a personal, manually-maintained distribution list that still benefits from the other features listed below.
2. The list of users within a distribution group is dynamically updated from the USO database at the time an email is sent. This will help ensure there are no out-of-date addresses in the list and, therefore, few bounced or incorrectly addressed emails. This relies on each school keeping its USO user data up-to-date, which is typically achieved by exporting that data regularly from the school’s MIS into USO using USO-AutoUpdate. In exceptional circumstances, manual account updates in USO may still be appropriate, and the distribution lists will respond to those updates accordingly. As already stated, manually-maintained lists will not be updated.
3. Distribution lists containing more than 100 recipients (e.g. year groups) can now be used successfully to send an email to all recipients. This effectively removes the restriction that previously existed whereby only the first 100 recipients could be sent an email, and so particularly benefits LAs and schools using USO with StaffMail, LondonMail, SafeMail and LA SurgeMail systems.
4. To protect the individual recipients’ identities, when a distribution group is selected in the “To” field of an email, all recipients will see just the distribution list name when the email is received. The list cannot be expanded to reveal the names and email addresses of other individual recipients.
5. In order to limit access to distribution lists, those users wishing to send an email to a distribution group must have a profile option called “Distribution list poster” added to their USO account profile. This profile option can be added to a user’s account by a Nominated Contact in the school, or an LA Power or Super User.
Schools wishing to use the service, which is initially released for use by schools using LGfL StaffMail, are invited to raise a support case with the Atomwide LGfL Service Desk to request it to be enabled.
Further developments, including support for other regions’ mail services, and the ability to create custom automated mailing lists from USO data (i.e. subject groups, staff role, etc.), are planned for the future.
The Staffmail system has been upgraded to provide every school with its own calendar, which can be found under Public Folders->Calendars.
Any staffmail user can add an entry to this calendar which will be visible to all but only the creator of an entry or a Nominated Contact can subsequently modify or delete an individual entry. Please note that this facility is currently in beta – if you experience any issues using the school public calendar then raise a case on the support site with a clear description of the behaviour observed and the actions that preceded it.
I requested a domain for a children’s centre and was asked which school it was attached to, which apparently is a requirement. This begs the question, how can I provide Staffmail in the same way for a standalone children’s centre?
John Schmitz from LA in Barnet
The StaffMail offline address book that is visible to a member of staff in a London school contains every StaffMail user in that person’s school.
A version this address book which lists every StaffMail user across all schools in an LA has until now been available only to users who have either USO “LA Power User” or “LA Super User” status, but StaffMail has now been modified so that it is visible to all staff associated with USO’s “LA or Council” establishment.
A new enhancement to the LGfL StaffMail system makes it possible to control the format of the display name presented in outbound emails and address books. The current options are:
<Legal First Name> <Legal Last Name> (this is the default setting)
<Title> <Legal First Name> <Legal Last Name>
<Title> <Initial of Legal First Name> <Legal Last Name>
<Title> <Legal Last Name>
<Initial of Legal First Name> <Legal Last Name>
<Legal Last Name>
<Legal Last Name>, <Legal First Name>
<Preferred First Name> <Preferred Last Name>
<Title> <Preferred First Name> <Preferred Last Name>
<Title> <Initial of Preferred First Name> <Preferred Last Name>
<Title> <Preferred Last Name>
<Initial of Preferred First Name> <Preferred Last Name>
<Preferred Last Name>
<Preferred Last Name>, <Preferred First Name>
Each LA can choose its own preferred format, and by default this option will apply to users in all schools within that LA. Additionally, though, each school can pick its own preferred format (and this will override the LA setting, if in place).
Once a change is made to the school or LA policy, the revised display name will take effect for a StaffMail user whenever a modification is made to the person’s USO account. This modification might be a password change (via the ‘key’ icon at https://support.lgfl.org.uk/) or an update to the user’s preferred names (through the My Account… Account details page within the secure area of the support site).
Here is a tip for those LGFLMail domain admins who wish to have more than one alias assigned to shared mailboxes……
If you want a shared mailbox to be addressable via more than one alias then start off by making a note of the target shared mailbox underlying name (this will be in the form mailboxXXXX@lgflmail.org where XXXX is a unique number). Armed with this information you should now select Administer Aliases from the Activity drop down menu.
At the bottom of the list of aliases created on your domain, enter the new alias name and then select the correct mailbox name from the drop down list (under Destination). Add further aliases to taste.
That is all there is to it.