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Administrator access for your Mac using Privileges

Privileges is an app coming to University-managed Macs that allows you to upgrade your rights to get administrator access and install software or download apps.

What is Privileges

Privileges is only coming to University-managed Macs, you will not need to use this if you are using your personal Mac.

When operating your device for day-to-day use, it is considered security best practice to be using a standard (non-administrative) account, rather than an administrator account. Privileges allow you to temporarily gain administrative rights so you can still complete tasks such as:

  • Installing or updating software
  • Configuration changes (updating system-wide settings)

Whilst the Digital, Data and Technology (DDaT) department are working hard to reduce the need for administrator privileges on Macs by having University-managed software, you may still encounter scenarios where administrator access is required.

When is Privileges being introduced

The Privileges app will be introduced to new staff members using University-managed Macs from Wednesday 15 March.

This change will also come to existing University-managed Macs but not until a later date.

How to elevate to administrator using Privileges

Use the Privileges app to gain administrator access on your University-managed Mac. Watch the video or follow the steps below:

  1. Open the “Privileges” application (the app icon is green and has a lock).
  2. Press “Request privileges”.
  3. You can type why you need administrator privileges in the box provided or choose an option from the drop-down menu. Then press “Continue”.
  4. Enter your University account password OR use the biometric scanner on your Mac.
  5. You will now have administrator privileges and the app icon will now be orange, showing an unlocked lock icon.

How to remove administrator using Privileges

Once you have finished using your upgraded privileges, remove your administrator access by following the steps demonstrated in the video and as outlined below:

  1. Pressing the orange icon with an unlocked lock.
  2. Then Press “Remove privileges”.

To reduce the security risks of having elevated privileges for long periods, you will be prompted to remove your privileges every 30 minutes until you return to your standard permissions.