Acceptable Use of Electronic Resources

 Revised: September 2017

Scope
This policy applies to all technology resources owned or managed by Agnes Scott College.  Individuals covered by this policy include, but are not limited to, Agnes Scott faculty, staff, students, alumnae, guests or agents of the administration, external individuals and organizations accessing network services via Agnes Scott facilities.

Purpose
In keeping with the College's commitment to utilizing technology in the instructional, educational, research and administrative activities, this policy provides direction in the appropriate use of all forms of computing and technology resources at Agnes Scott College.

The use of Agnes Scott computing and technology resources is a privilege which may be revoked at any time for misuse. The College reserves the right to limit access to its resources when applicable College policies, state and/or federal laws or contractual obligations are violated. The College does not, as a rule, monitor the content of materials transported over the College's network resources or posted on College-owned computers and networks, but reserves the right to do so.

Policy
All users of College resources are expected to behave in a responsible, ethical and legal manner; respecting the rights of other computer users, the integrity of the physical facilities and all pertinent license and contractual agreements.  If an individual is found to be in violation of the Acceptable Use Policy, the College will take disciplinary action, which can include the restriction and possible loss of network privileges, suspension or termination from the College.  All individuals are subject to federal, state and local laws governing many interactions that occur on the Internet.

In the text that follows, individual Policy statements are followed by examples of activities that constitute unauthorized use of Agnes Scott technology resources. The examples included are not all inclusive.

Agnes Scott technology resources may not be used to damage, impair or in any way cause purposeful damage to Agnes Scott networks or computers or external networks or computers.  For example, you may not:

  • Use Agnes Scott electronic resources to breach security of any computer system
  • Share your network ID and password with any person on or off campus 
  • Use computer resources to send large amounts of email (e.g., email "spamming") to an internal or external system 
  • Send email of any type to someone's address in an effort to disable their email capabilities 
  • Forge, alter or willfully falsify electronic mail headers, directory information, or other information generated and/or maintained by the College 
  • Use computer resources irresponsibly or in a manner that adversely affects the work of others. This includes recklessly or intentionally (1) damaging any system by introducing malware, viruses or worms, (2) damaging or violating information not belonging to you, or (3) misusing or allowing misuse of computer resources 
  • Use Agnes Scott College resources for non-College related activities that unduly increase the network load (e.g., chain mail, network gaming and spamming)

Unauthorized access, reproduction or use of the resources of others is prohibited.  For example, you may not:

  • Make unauthorized copies of copyrighted materials. You should assume all software, graphic images, music, and the like are copyrighted. Copying, downloading or uploading copyrighted materials without the authorization of the copyright owner is against the law, and may result in civil and criminal penalties, including fines and imprisonment
  • Create or execute any computer programs intended to (1) obscure the true identity of the sender of electronic mail or electronic messages, (2) bypass, subvert, or otherwise render ineffective the security or access control measures on any network or computer system without the permission of the owner, or (3) examine or collect data from the network (e.g., a "network sniffer" program) 
  • Use resources to gain unauthorized access to resources of the College or other institutions, organizations or individuals 
  • Use false or misleading information for the purpose of obtaining access to unauthorized resources 
  • Access, alter, copy, move or remove information, proprietary software or other data files without prior authorization 
  • Use resources to discover another individual's password 
  • Use resources to obtain personal information (e.g. educational records, grades, or other College files) about an individual without their permission 
  • Use resources to forge an academic document 
  • Use resources to steal another's individual works or to misrepresent one's own work 
  • Use electronic communication to collude on examinations, papers, or any other academic work 
  • Use resources to falsify or fabricate research data 
  • Use resources to obtain or release another individual's or entity's proprietary information or trade secrets 
  • Use Agnes Scott resources for remote activities that are unauthorized at the remote site
  • Intercept transmitted information intended for another user 

Use of Agnes Scott technology resources to interfere with or cause impairment to the activities of other individuals is prohibited.  For example, you may not:

  • Send chain email or information about pyramid schemes
  • Send large quantities of email to an individual's mailbox (e.g., email "spamming") which has the effect of interfering with or causing impairment to that individual's activities 
  • Change an individual's password in an effort to access their account 
  • Communicate or use any password, personal identification number, credit card number or other personal or financial information of a third party without the permission of such third party

Use of Agnes Scott technology resources to harass or make threats to specific individuals, or a class of individuals is prohibited.  For example, you may not:

  • Send unwanted and repeated communication by electronic mail, voicemail or other form of electronic communication
  • Send communication by electronic mail, voicemail or other forms of electronic communication which is motivated by race, ethnicity, religion, gender, or sexual orientation (including, without limitation, any communication that violates the College's "Statement Against Discrimination or Harassment") 
  • Use email, newsgroups or social media resources to threaten, stalk or harass someone 
  • Post or send personal or sensitive information about individuals via any form of electronic communication 
  • Post or distribute via any form of electronic communication "hate speech" regarding a group's race, ethnicity, religion, gender, or sexual orientation 

Use of Agnes Scott technology resources in pursuit of unauthorized commercial activities is prohibited.  For example, you may not:

  • Use resources for personal commercial gain, or other commercial purpose without approval by the College
  • Use resources to operate or support a non-College related business 
  • Use resources in a manner inconsistent with the College's contractual obligations to suppliers of those resources or with any published College policy

Use of Agnes Scott technology resources to violate city, state, federal or international laws, rules, regulations, rulings or orders, or to otherwise violate any College rules or policies is prohibited.  For example, you may not:

  • Install software, music or images obtained in violation of copyright or trademark laws or an applicable license agreement on any computer (collectively, "pirated materials") owned by the College
  • Use any College-owned electronic resources to share, store or distribute pirated materials. This includes college computers, network resources or Internet services.
  • Effect or receive unauthorized electronic transfer of funds
  • Intentionally access or disseminate child pornography or other obscene material 
  • Violate any laws or participate in the commission or furtherance of any crime or other unlawful or improper purpose

Reporting a Violation
Members of the Agnes Scott community who believe they have witnessed or been a victim of a violation of Agnes Scott College's Acceptable Use Policy or associated policies should notify or file a complaint with the appropriate College office as follows:

  • Students should report suspected violations to the Dean of Students.
  • Faculty members should report suspected violations to the Dean of the College.
  • Staff members should report suspected violations to their direct supervisor or the office human resources.

Reports of suspected unauthorized use or misuse of Agnes Scott computing or technology resources will be investigated by the Office of Information Technology with assistance from other campus offices as necessary.

Agnes Scott College prohibits taking negative action against any staff member, faculty or student for reporting a possible deviation from this policy or for cooperating in an investigation. Any staff member, faculty or student who retaliates against another staff member, faculty or student for reporting a possible deviation from this policy or for cooperating in an investigation will be subject to disciplinary action. 

Enforcement of a Violation
Violation of this Policy will result in action by the appropriate College office or agency. Such action may include, but is not limited to,

  • Loss of computing privileges
  • Honor Court action
  • Suspension or termination
  • Prosecution under applicable civil or criminal laws

Questions Relating to This Policy
The examples of unauthorized use of Agnes Scott computing or technology resources listed above are not meant to be exhaustive. Questions regarding this Policy or the application of this Policy to a specific situation should be referred to the Associate Vice President for Technology. Whenever you are in doubt regarding an issue of questionable use, it is in your best interest to resolve the issue before pursuing any questionable use of resources.

Related Policies and Guidelines
Because communications encompass many different forms of communication across many different media, there are several additional College policies of which members of the campus community should be aware: 

This policy supersedes all previous policies regarding acceptable use of computer or technology resources.