The Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences is one of the largest faculties at Ludwig-Maximilians- Universität München (LMU Munich). Of the university’s more than 50,000 students, approximately 20,000 access the faculty’s IT services resources during their studies.
With the growing popularity of online learning systems, LMU’s students and staff expect access to resources 24 hours a day via multiple devices including laptops, tablets and smartphones – rather than just from faculty workstations. However, accessing university resources on personally-owned devices poses significant security risks, including the threat of data breaches. To prevent this, the faculty wanted greater control over user access rights.
While student expectations rise, IT budgets do not. To meet the growing demand for online resources without exposing sensitive data or increasing operating costs, the faculty set out to find a solution that automates identity management to ensure that users have access to the services they need while reducing the burden on IT staff.
In collaboration with LMU’s IT service provider, the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences and Humanities and central LMU administration, the Micro Focus partners Code and Concept and IS4IT GmbH implemented a secure identity provisioning and access-control solution based on NetIQ Identity Manager. The staff uses Identity Manager to grant students access to learning resources. The solution maps user privileges to user identities, enabling easy monitoring and control of access rights to protect sensitive data.
Code and Concept integrated Identity Manager with existing IT systems, including LMU’s main administration application, to streamline management workflows.
“Identity Manager uses information from the university’s Human Resources systems and directory services, enabling us to provision accounts across all systems quickly and easily,” explained Dr. Werner Degenhardt, Academic Director and Chief Information Officer of the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences at LMU.
Partners Code and Concept and IS4IT GmbH also integrated NetIQ eDirectory and Identity Manager with the VERDE desktop virtualization platform from NIMBOXX, providing students and staff seamless access to their systems – regardless of where they log in.
“We can easily connect new systems to Identity Manager using standard drivers, customizing the configuration to suit our own requirements – this allows us to extract the maximum value from the solution and gives us great flexibility in terms of provisioning and monitoring access rights,” Dr. Degenhardt said.
Supported by the solution, the faculty ensures that students can access the online learning resources and many other services they need at any time.
“Students and staff work at all times of day and night, so keeping systems available round-the-clock is crucial,” Dr. Degenhardt explained. “With Identity Manager, we maximize service availability because we do not need maintenance windows. The solution is robust and easy to maintain – we have never had any problems and performance has always been excellent.”
While the faculty constantly strives to deliver the best possible experience for students and staff using the latest technology, the solution ensures that administrative overhead remains under control.
“With Identity Manager, students and staff have a seamless user experience across faculties, the central University Library and even external institutions such as the Bavarian State Library or the city’s free Wi-Fi hotspots – giving students quick access to all-important learning resources to support their studies,” Dr. Degenhardt said.
“With automated user provisioning, students and staff only need to register once to gain access to relevant systems – streamlining the registration process while saving staff significant time. Tracking user activity and access rights with Identity Manager ensures we can monitor the system for potential security risks efficiently.
“Micro Focus and partners Code and Concept and IS4IT GmbH have used their outstanding technical expertise and understanding of the education sector to help us successfully extend our environment and introduce new functionalities,” Dr. Degenhardt concluded.
“Building on our success with Identity Manager, we are planning to upgrade to the latest release to further optimize our identity management.”