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Northwestern Network Access Control Overview

Northwestern Network Access Control (NAC) is a security registration system for the University student residential network. Northwestern NAC ensures the integrity of the overall campus network and minimizes the potential for computer security vulnerabilities.

Before a computer, game system, or other network device is granted access to the wired Northwestern network in residential housing, it must be registered on the Northwestern NAC with a valid NetID and NetID password.

Security vulnerabilities may include malware, DMCA violations, or other malicious threats.  If a computer is compromised with one of these vulnerabilities it will be quarantined and prevented from accessing University network services. If a computer has been infected with a virus or malware, the owner of the computer will be contacted and provided with steps to remove the malware or other security threats. The computer will remain quarantined until it is no longer a threat to the Northwestern network.

Computer Registration

The first time a computer attempts to access the wired Northwestern network, access is restricted and directed to the Northwestern NAC registration page. Computer registration is a simple process that takes only a few minutes. Once registration is complete, access will be granted.

During the registration process, Northwestern NAC collects your NetID and all MAC addresses associated with your device.

A computer may be required to re-register on the NAC if it has not been active on the Northwestern network for at least six months or when a significant vulnerability threatens to compromise the Northwestern network.

Registration of Other Network Devices

Each game system or other network device that connects to the wired Northwestern network must be individually registered to obtain network access. This registration process requires users to enter the MAC address of each device.  Register a network device.

Last Updated: 5 May 2017

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