Important Changes to Alumni and Retiree Accounts and Email
Information Technology maintains more than 30,000 OUNet Accounts and ou.edu email addresses for alumni and retirees. These accounts make up more than one-third of all OUNet Accounts and represent significant cost, cybersecurity risk, and contract compliance challenges.
To address these issues and create a more sustainable email offering, IT will decommission OUNet Accounts and ou.edu email addresses for alumni and retirees and offer each user an alumni.ou.edu email account as a replacement.
To ensure the smoothest transition possible:
- Create your Alumni email account now at http://www.ou.edu/ouit/alumni-email.
- You will need to log in with your ou.edu account in order to access the form
- Back up personal emails, contacts, calendar items, etc. from your existing ou.edu email account that you would like to keep.
- Update your email address on any consumer services (Netflix, Apple, automatic bill payments, etc.) that use your ou.edu email for account access or communication
We know that losing your ou.edu address will be difficult for many and that this transition will require a time commitment from you. We apologize for any frustration or inconvenience. If you would like to provide feedback, please fill out the IT Feedback survey here.
How do I set up my alumni email account?
Instructions for setting up your account can be found here.
How do I add my alumni email to an email client or mobile device?
Please visit these articles to find instructions on adding your alumni email account to an email client or mobile device.
Can I choose my alumni email address?
All alumni email addresses will automatically be created based on your name on file with the University following this standard: firstname.lastname@example.org. In the case of a duplicate address, we will add a number: email@example.com.
EMAIL BACKUP AND TRANSITION
Will IT back up my personal ou.edu mail and migrate it to my new alumni.ou.edu account?
Only personal emails, contacts, and calendar items should be backed up or migrated from your ou.edu account. Unfortunately, IT cannot review your emails to identify personal communications to migrate.
How do I back-up my personal email if I do not use a mail client?
You can forward personal emails individually, but if you choose not to do that then you will need to download an email client in order to back up your email.
Can I forward OU emails to my alumni account?
If you would like to set up an email forward, please visit this article. Please note forwarding will only function as long as your original OU account is active.
What if I am an alumnus/alumna and current OU employee or a returning student?
Current employees and/or alumni who return as students will retain their ou.edu email in addition to their alumni account. If an employee or student leaves OU, they will lose access to their ou.edu email address, but not their alumni email address.
Will I still be able to log into OU systems and digital services?
No. Your alumni email address cannot be used to access OU systems.
What if I need to conduct official OU business?
If you are still affiliated with a department at OU, please contact the department head.
Can I pay to keep my @ou.edu email address?
No. Your ou.edu email address will be decommissioned on the expiration date given to you via email.
Will I lose access to any retiree benefits that require an OUNet Account?
No. You can access most retiree benefits with a retiree letter or a Sooner Card. Your OUNet Account is only used to access a few retiree services (HR Training, Employee Discount Program, and Library Services). We are working with those departments to ensure continued access to those services prior to expiration of alumni and retiree accounts.
Why is IT making this change?
As we seek to further reduce IT costs and risk, we have had to make some difficult choices about service offerings so that we can continue to support the University’s core missions effectively. The following provides insight into some of the issues that required us to make this change:
- Cybersecurity – Alumni and retiree accounts are susceptible to phishing because they are not monitored as regularly as student, faculty, and staff accounts. If an alumni or retiree account is hacked, it has unfettered ability to send emails to ou.edu addresses for active students, faculty, and staff. Bad actors can then use this ability to target individuals with access to OU systems or data. Shifting these alumni and retiree accounts to a new domain provides a buffer of protection against these types of attacks.
- Cost – The @alumni.ou.edu email service is provided by Microsoft as a free service to the University community, which reduces licensing costs and costs related to managing and securing those 30,000 accounts.
- Resources – These 30,000 accounts represent resource concerns for a number of different departments across campus, including IT and the Open Records Office.
- Licensing Compliance – Software companies don’t typically license products for alumni or retirees. Because of the way users download some enterprise software, we can’t always limit access of alumni or retirees, which puts us out of compliance with our contracts. As we focus on renegotiating major contracts to further reduce costs, we need to make sure that we can limit access only to those who need it or risk price increases.