Email improvements

A standardized campus email system with enhanced threat protection


Motivation behind the change

Gears turning
  • The licence for our current threat protection tool (Proofpoint) was expiring providing the University the opportunity to review, assess, and select the best threat protection option (Cisco selected)
  • System audit recommendation to reduce non-IST servers/email systems that present risks to the University (to the extent possible)
  • Streamline end user support by standardizing email systems at the University (Microsoft 365 email) and reducing dependency on legacy system, Mailservices 

Relationship to other Microsoft 365 projects

Connected nodes

Audience(s) impacted

Audience of people

Transition from Proofpoint to Cisco:

  • All campus users (receive email messages related to security threats)
  • Students will now have threat protection reviews for email

Reduction of non-IST servers/email systems: 

  • Departments running their own servers/domain routing email
  • Alumni and retirees who use Mailservices will be migrated to Microsoft 365 email

Migration of on-premises Connect and Mailservices email accounts to M365

  • Retirees
  • Employees
  • Alumni

Known impacts


Transition from Proofpoint to Cisco:

  • New or different messaging related to email security reviews

Reduction of non-IST servers/email systems: 

  • Departments that operate their own email servers will be encouraged to adopt Microsoft 365 email and some people will need to complete some work to make this happen

Retirees and Alumni:

  • Some pre-/post-migration work

Benefits of the change


Transition from Proofpoint to Cisco:

  • Enhanced threat protection for campus email

Reduction of non-IST servers/email systems: 

  • Enhanced functionality, collaboration, and productivity opportunities provided with Microsoft 365 email 

Retirees and Alumni:

  • Access to enhanced functionality available through Microsoft 365 suite of apps and services; improved / streamlined end user support; enhanced security

Risk of not completing the change

Danger symbol
  • No anti-malware solution in place once Proofpoint licence expires
  • Servers/email systems not supported by IST will continue to pose a security risk for the University
  • Significant difficulty and risk supporting complex legacy email system that has limited support available

Important date(s)

  • TBD 2022: Reduction of non-centralized email servers and non-@uwaterloo domains
  • August to December 2022: Migration of generic email accounts to M365
  • May 2022: Migration of alumni from Connect on-premises and Mailservices email accounts to M365
  • November 2021: Migration of resource email (complete)
  • October 2021: Migration of alumni email (complete)
  • June 2021: Migration of retiree email (Connect accounts only) (complete)
  • January 31, 2021: Implement Cisco Threat Protection for all inbound email (complete)
  • November 2, 2020: Implement Cisco Threat Protection for all outbound email (complete)

Project contact(s)

Information phone