St. Thomas Aquinas College (the College) recognizes that the use of the internet and email has many benefits and can make our lives more efficient and effective. Therefore, you are encouraged to use the internet and email systems appropriately. Unacceptable use of the internet and email can place the College and others at risk. This policy outlines the College’s guidelines for acceptable use of internet and email services.
This policy must be followed in conjunction with other College policies governing conduct and behavior. St. Thomas Aquinas College complies with all applicable federal, state and local laws and nothing contained herein should be construed to violate any of the rights or responsibilities contained in such laws.
St. Thomas Aquinas College has established the following guidelines for the use of the College’s technology and communications networks including internet and email, in an appropriate and ethical manner.
1. All technology provided by the College including computer systems, communications networks, record keeping and other information stored electronically, is the property of the College.
2. Authorized users may not use the College‘s internet, email, or other electronic communications to transmit, retrieve, or store any communications or content of a defamatory, discriminatory, harassing, or pornographic nature. No messages with derogatory or inflammatory remarks about an individual’s race, age, disability, religion, national origin, physical attributes or sexual preference may be transmitted. Harassment of any kind is prohibited.
3. Disparaging, abusive, profane or offensive language, materials that might adversely or negatively reflect on St. Thomas Aquinas College and any illegal activities – including piracy, cracking, extortion, blackmail, copyright infringement and unauthorized access to any computers on the internet or email – are forbidden.
4. Copyrighted materials belonging to entities other than the College may not be transmitted on the College network without the permission of the copyright holder. We must respect all copyrights and may not copy, retrieve, modify or forward copyrighted materials, except with permission or as a single copy for reference only. Saving copyright-protected information to the network drive without permission is prohibited. Sharing the URL or address of an internet site is permitted.
5. The use of the system in a way that disrupts its use by others is prohibited. This includes sending or receiving an excessive number of large files and spamming.
6. To prevent contamination of the College’s technology and communications equipment and systems by harmful computer viruses, downloaded files should be checked for possible infection through the Information Technology department. Also, given that many browser add-on packages may not be compatible with other programs and may cause a problem for the systems, downloading plug-ins is prohibited without prior permission from the Information Technology department.
7. Everyone is responsible for the content of all text, audio, or image files that he or she places or sends over the College’s internet or email systems. No email or other electronic communications may be sent that conceal the identity of the sender or represent the sender as someone else. The College’s corporate identity is attached to all outgoing email communications and therefore should reflect the College’s corporate values and appropriate language and content.
8. Email and other electronic communications transmitted by the College equipment, systems and networks are not private or confidential and are the property of the College. Therefore, the College has the right to examine, monitor and regulate e mail and other electronic communications, directories, files and all other content, including internet use, transmitted by or stored in its technology systems, whether onsite or offsite.
9. Internal and external email, voicemail, and text messages are considered College records and may be subject to discovery in the event of litigation. Users must be aware of this possibility when communicating electronically within and outside the College.