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STAFF REGULATIONS

 

Staff Regulations Governing The Use Of Computer Resources

These regulations were adopted by the Dublin Institute of Technology Governing Body on 14th November 2001.

Any queries in relation to these regulations should be directed to the DIT Support Desk at Ext 3123 or support@dit.ie

 

1. Introduction

A.  Email/Internet services are Institute facilities intended for use for teaching, learning, research and administration in support of the Institute's objectives. Email addresses and Internet access, (where available to Staff), are provided for this purpose.

B.  Computing resources are provided to support the academic, research, institutional, and administrative objectives of the Institute. These resources are intended for the sole use of the Institute’s staff and other authorised users (“users”) to accomplish tasks related to the user’s status and duties as a member of the Institute, consistent with the Institute’s objectives. These resources, including software and data provided by the Institute, must not be used for commercial use or significant personal use.

C.  Computers are powerful communication tools and must be used wisely. Use of these resources in a manner which contravenes these Regulations may result in disciplinary action which may include suspension or expulsion from the Institute.

D.  The basic principle is that all users are expected to use common sense and to conduct themselves in a professional and appropriate manner in their emails and use of the Institute’s computer facilities and the Internet. Staff are reminded that network postings or messages may be archived for years in various Internet search databases. In addition, these messages may be produced to others, or to a Court in connection with litigation, or disclosed under the Freedom of Information Act.

E.  Users are individually accountable for all actions associated with their use of the Institute’s information and technology systems.

F.  Use of the Institute’s computer facilities is a privilege granted to Institute Staff and the Institute reserves the right to withdraw or limit access to such facilities.

G.  These Regulations apply to all staff of the Institute and to all users of Institute computer resources.

 

2. Confidentiality

A.  The Institute does not provide users a guarantee or right to privacy or confidentiality in connection with the use of email and internet systems, and users should have no expectation of privacy in this regard.

B.  The Institute reserves the right to retrieve information from its computers for the purpose of finding lost information or retrieving information lost due to system failure. The Institute reserves the right to monitor computer usage if there is a suspicion on reasonable grounds of criminal activity or any breach of these Regulations, and in this event there should be no expectation of prior warning or notice.

C.  Such monitoring includes the generation of logs which may be posted to detect and establish breaches of these Regulations. The Institute’s computers and networks are Institute property and subject to standard maintenance and auditing activities as well as reasonable cause searches without notice to staff.

D.  Users consent to such monitoring and accept that it is essential to properly safeguard the business of the Institute and to protect the rights of all staff.

E.  Data is backed up as a regular feature of network administration. Deletion of email messages and other data does not necessarily prevent the retrieval of items. The Institute will not accept liability for lost or deleted data.

 

3. Use of Computer Resources

A.  General

Users are required to abide by the law, by these Regulations, by the Data Protection Legislation, by the HEAnet Acceptable Usage Policy (attached), and by any additional regulations as may be laid down from time to time, in relation to the proper usage of computer equipment and materials.

It is the user’s responsibility to be informed of the correct operating procedures for the computer resources or products used. A user who is uncertain as to the correct procedure in any situation should obtain clarification before proceeding.

Users must not engage in conduct which interferes with others’ use of shared computing resources and/or the activities of other users, including studying, teaching, research and administration in or for the Institute.

B.  Reporting/Queries

Users must immediately advise the relevant members of staff of any suspected acts of violation, breach in the security system or virus.

If users have any queries about the Institute’s information and technology systems they should seek advice from the relevant member of staff.

C.  User Access

Users must not utilise any other person’s access rights.

Users must not attempt to gain access to resources or data for which they have not been specifically authorised, nor should they attempt to bypass, nor probe, any security mechanisms governing access to the computer systems.

A user must not misrepresent himself or herself as another individual in electronic communications.

Users must not divulge their Institute email address to any website that is not required by virtue of their designated duties, studies or research.

D.  Content

The Institute’s computer facilities and services should not be used to create, send, post, download, forward, view, store or display offensive, abusive, slanderous, vulgar, threatening or defamatory messages, text, graphics, or images or material from whatever source which may put the Institute at risk of prosecution, civil action, embarrassment or loss of reputation. This includes harassment, discrimination and intimidation of individuals on the basis of race, sex, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability, age marital status, family status or membership of the traveller community, etc. Specific examples include, but are not limited to, material that:

  • is sexually explicit (whether visually or in written form) including descriptions or images of nudity or sexual acts;
  • is discriminatory;
  • advocates or supports violent or criminal acts;
  • involves gambling;
  • is by way of chain letter;
  • violates copyright laws;
  • breaches the Institute’s harassment guidelines;
  • involves use or transfer of unauthorised or unlicensed software;
  • involves knowingly transferring viruses or virus based files;
  • involves participation in responses to SCAMS, SPAMS or illegal activities.

Provided that the user first obtains the consent in writing from his or her Head of School or other designated officer, access to material described above for the purposes of bona fide study or research undertaken as part of an Institute programme of studies is not prohibited.

Email messages should be accurate, courteous and necessary.

Users should note that all messages on the Internet or access to Internet sites coming from the Institute’s information and technology systems are identified as Institute activities. Electronic mail will be treated as a record of the Institute. It may be required to be retrieved as legal evidence. Therefore, electronic mail should be used in the same way as other forms of written communication on Institute notepaper and all electronic mail messages should be regarded as permanent documents which will, or may become public, whether under the Freedom of Information Act or otherwise.

Users must not use Institute computer facilities to comment or communicate unofficially on any legal disputes or actions involving the Institute, its employees or students.

E.  Computer Security

Users must not remove the Institute’s information and technology equipment from DIT premises without the prior authorisation of Head of Department or more senior officer. Users are responsible for the safekeeping of such information in computers whilst they are off-site and for reporting any associated loss of such information or computers to Head of Department or more senior officer.

Users must ensure that they do not deliberately or otherwise corrupt or destroy any software, or data facilities, or equipment accessible to them, or introduce viruses to these resources. Users must not physically damage or deface any computer, ancillary equipment, documentation or related materials.

Messages should not be sent to a larger audience than is reasonably justifiable, in particular when they contain attachments.

Care should be taken when addressing email messages, to avoid mis-delivery.

Large and non-essential Internet downloads should be avoided, especially during peak hours, when they may be likely to impact on network performance.

Users are advised that software products are covered by licensing agreements. Such products and related materials shall not be copied.

Eating, drinking and smoking are strictly forbidden in any computer service area.

Users may not remove, disconnect, power off, nor otherwise interfere with any item of computer equipment without authorisation.

To avoid power wastage, users’ Desktop/Office equipment (PCs, printers and photocopiers etc.) must be configured for Power-Saving mode. Older equipment without a Power-Saving mode must be powered down before close of business each day. LCD screens should be purchased instead of CRT screens for power savings of 60% to 80%.

F.  Compliance

Users must comply with the instructions and advice of Institute staff having responsibility for provision and support of computer services and for regulation of their use.

 

4. Discipline

Any user in breach of these regulations is liable for the legal and / or disciplinary consequences of that action, which may take the form of withdrawal of facilities, suspension, dismissal or prosecution.