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Remote Support Service

ScoMIS Remote Support Header Image

What is it?

The Scomis Remote Support Service is a new service that replaces the use of VNC with a standardised, secure and audtited remote support platform.  The platform will be powered by CentraStage.

This document provides information regarding the implementation, use and planned developments for the Scomis Remote Support Service.

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What Scomis will do

We will make available a web form where schools will be invited to sign up for our new Remote Support Service. We will maintain a webpage outlining the Remote Support Service features and where the Remote Support Service will be used.

Before setting up remote tasks, we will agree what the best time for these to be done will be and keep this information on our records.

We will ensure that the agent is only used by trained members of the Scomis team who will not access your computer without permission.  

We will ensure that permissions will be tightly controlled, providing a tiered administration structure giving only the required levels to staff providing Remote Support.

We provide assurances that the agent will not but used for transferring files to and from you computer without permission, or give any third party access to your computer.

What it will be used for now

A secure and fully auditable replacement of the existing VNC application that is currently used for remote support.

In order for us to improve our services to schools, the agent collects an audit of the computer to provide added value to Scomis Services, such as the Windows Health Check or Onsite Technician Services, SIMS Upgrade Service, Scomis Encryption Service, McAfee Antivirus software, Scomis Remote Backup and SIMS Terminal Server Service.

The Remote Support Service will be used to deliver SIMS Upgrades for subscribing Schools and future migrations, dramatically reducing the downtime that schools experience whilst this procedure is carried out.

What it could be used for in the future

The agent has the ability to actively monitor and issue alerts for a selection of common problems - in some cases these problems can be automatically fixed.  This could become part of a whole managed network solution.

The Remote Support Service can be used to provide SLA statistics such as the amount of time spent in remote support sessions.

The agent can also carry out remote tasks for SIMS Migrations, automated fixes, updates to software, AntiVirus Updates, Defragmentation and Computer Tidy up.  The scope and type of these tasks is likely to grow over time as the product matures further and software changes dictate.

Further efficiencies can be realised by utilising the ability to perform Computer Shutdown for power saving,

Details of a these new services will be released during this current financial year.

How it works

A software agent will be installed onto specific school computers - initially only on main administration machines. The agent will replace the VNC software with a newer more secure and auditable version.

The agent will operate in ‘Privacy Mode’ by default on Administration Computers, which requires the end user to accept or reject the offer of support.  All successful connections are logged to form an audit trail providing details of how long a session lasted and who provided the remote support.  In addition, the agent screenshots each mouse click, saving a record of the remote support session.

Access to the Remote Support Platform requires a username and password.

Permissions are assigned to the user, allowing nominated ScoMIS and Finance officers the ability to request an audited remote session from the schools that they support.  Access to the Remote Support platform will be restricted to approved connections through corporate devices or from within the ScoMIS Infrastructure.  The platform will be further be protected by the ScoMIS Firewall.

Permissions will be tightly controlled, providing a tiered administration structure giving only the required levels to staff providing Remote Support.  To satisfy data security requirements, all traffic between the agent and the Remote Support management server will be encrypted using 128bit SSL encryption.

The ScoMIS Remote Support Service will not currently replace existing Remote Desktop access to dedicated servers.

How much does it cost

Scomis will be providing one agent per school for use on the main administration machine as part of the Service Level Agreement that schools purchase. Additional agents can be purchased please contact Scomis should schools require them.