Campus Life

New VPN required for students who access secure Penn State resources

GlobalProtect replaces AnyConnect as Penn State's official VPN.   Credit: Talia Barnes / Penn StateCreative Commons

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Students who use Penn State’s Virtual Private Network (VPN) to access protected University resources must download and use the University’s new VPN by June 19 to stay connected.

Now offered at no cost from under “Available Software,” GlobalProtect replaces Cisco’s AnyConnect as Penn State’s official secure network connection. Students will not be able to use AnyConnect as of June 19.  

Installation instructions for GlobalProtect and device-specific guides for all operating systems are available at the IT Knowledge Base via GlobalProtect Remote Access VPN - Overview.

Penn State services such as Office 365, which includes Outlook, Teams and OneDrive, as well as Zoom, University websites and enterprise applications such as Canvas, do not require a VPN connection. Students should check with their course instructor, department or college to determine if specific course applications require the VPN.

VPN connections encrypt traffic from third-party internet service providers to keep University services and resources safe. They are required when accessing information that is strictly controlled by laws, regulations or contracts, and the disclosure or loss of such information would have significant legal, financial and reputational consequences for Penn State, its students, faculty and staff.

“The transition to GlobalProtect VPN will significantly enhance our ability to protect University data and systems and ensure that Penn State has the scalability, reliability and security needed moving forward,” said Richard Sparrow, Penn State’s interim chief information security officer.

For support or assistance downloading the GlobalProtect VPN client, students should contact their local campus or college IT support or the IT Service Desk.


Last Updated April 28, 2021