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Zendesk support: respond to common questions

This section explains what to do in response to common support questions, where there:

  • is not a macro for that situation
  • is a macro, but there are extra are things you need to do before you can send it

If you need information about the Zendesk schedule, process or interface, see the Zendesk best practice slide deck.

I need to reset my password

We have a stock response for this in Zendesk. Use the macro ‘GovWifi - end user - asking for new or existing sign in details’.

Users often ask to reset their password but they do not usually need to do this. If they’ve forgotten or lost their password, they can get a reminder by following the sign up instructions again.

When they email or text us, we can tell if they have a GovWifi account already. If they do, we’ll send their existing username and password in reply.

If a user thinks that their password has been compromised, then we can delete their account. Developers can do this. The user can then sign up to GovWifi again using the same email address.

Can my organisation use GovWifi?

All public sector organisations can offer GovWifi. This means they must be funded or controlled by the UK government.

End users do not have to be from a public sector organisation to create a GovWifi account. However, only people with public sector email addresses can get a username and password via the email sign up route.

We have a register of public sector organisations that organisations need to be on before they can offer GovWifi. We also have a list of approved email domains that a domain needs to be on before a person can use the email sign up route.

These lists are not exhaustive, so sometimes we need to add organisations and domains to these ‘allow lists’ manually.

Check if it’s a public sector organisation

If someone wants to know if their organisation or email domain can use GovWifi, check that it’s a public sector organisation. You can usually tell by Googling it.

If it’s a public sector organisation:

  1. Go to the GovWifi Super admin site.
  2. Go to the ‘allow list’ section.
  3. Follow the steps to add the organisation and its email domain to the allow list.
  4. In Zendesk, select the macro ‘GovWifi - request to add a new email domain’.
  5. Edit the macro - there are 3 possible responses depending on whether the organisation is public sector or not. You need to send the part that confirms the organisation is now approved.

If it’s not a public sector organisation:

  1. In Zendesk, select the macro ‘GovWifi - request to add a new email domain’.
  2. Edit the macro - there are 3 possible responses depending on whether the organisation is public sector or not. You need to send the part that says we cannot approve the organisation.

If you’re not sure:

  1. In Zendesk, select the macro ‘GovWifi - request to add a new email domain’.
  2. Edit the macro - there are 3 possible responses depending on whether the organisation is public sector or not. You need to send the part that asks for more information.
  3. If the person responds and it’s still unclear, copy in the service owner who will take it from there.

I’m having problems using the internet once connected

If individual users are having problems that are not related to their username and password, it’s probably due to local issues - not GovWifi. This includes:

  • connectivity dropping or slow internet speeds
  • not being able to access certain websites or do specific things on the network

Users with these issues should contact IT support for the building they’re in. The IT team will be able to look for problems with the device or local network.

This is because GovWifi is not a network itself. It’s an authentication layer that sits on top of an organisation’s existing wifi infrastructure. It just appears as a network to end users so they know they can use their username and password to get on the internet. The network is managed by the building’s IT team, who also set the policies for network use.

I need information about a user

If an organisation knows an individual user has done something malicious or breached an acceptable use policy on its network, it can ask for the information we hold about that user.

We have either the email address or phone number of all users with GovWifi accounts.

Before you can provide user information to an organisation:

  1. Go to the Super admins site.
  2. Go to the ‘Team members’ section and check that the request is coming from an admin user at that organisation.
  3. Go to the ‘Organisations’ section and search the organisation name.
  4. You’ll see a section called ‘MOU’ which will show whether the organisation has signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). The MOU sets out the terms that we share personal data under.

If the organisation has not signed the MOU, go to Zendesk and send the macro response ‘GovWifi - admin user - asking for info about an end user - MOU not signed’. Escalate to the service owner if the organisation has any questions about this.

If it has signed the MOU, you can send them the information.

How to find the information

User information is stored in a database. Only developers can access it.

If you’re not a developer, ask one of them to get the information for you. It usually takes a couple of days, as it takes a while and has to be prioritised around other work.

To send them the information, use the Zendesk macro ‘GovWifi - admin user - MOU signed’. Some organisations are not aware that end users can sign up by text message, so explain this if you’re sending them a phone number.

Can you block a user on our network?

No. If an organisation wants to block a user, its IT team will need to do this locally.

The user will still be able to access the internet using GovWifi in other buildings.

How do I reset my two factor authentication?

Use the macro ‘GovWifi - admin user - reset 2FA’. It explains that if an admin user needs to reset their 2FA:

  1. The admin user can ask a team member to do it for them.
  2. The team member needs to sign into their GovWifi admin account, go to the ‘Team members’ section’ and select ‘Reset 2FA’ next to the user’s name.
  3. The admin user can then follow the link in the email they receive, and follow the instructions to set up 2FA again.

The macro also explains that if this does not work, or if the admin does not have a team member who can do this for them, we have a manual process. This involves us setting up a video call with the admin and asking to see some ID. This is to be sure it’s really them trying to access GovWifi admin. The process document includes more information about how do to this check.

My organisation is having connectivity issues

Use the macro ‘Govwifi - admin user - end users having connection issues’ when an admin users reports connection issues.

If they continue to report issues, use the “Questions for organisations facing RADIUS authentication issues” document to develop a list of questions for the admin user to answer.

The more we know about the issue the better able we are to investigate.

If the organisation is experiencing an incident, regardless of whether the root cause is GovWifi or not, we recommend following the steps outlined in “Helping other organisation incident management teams with their incidents”.

This page was last reviewed on 30 May 2023. It needs to be reviewed again on 30 November 2023 by the page owner #govwifi .
This page was set to be reviewed before 30 November 2023 by the page owner #govwifi. This might mean the content is out of date.