Acceptable use of IT facilities
- Before any use is made of computing or networking facilities in the University you must register as a user. If you are a student or a member of staff of the University you are required to adhere to the University's policies and procedures. If your status is properly recorded in the relevant administrative databases you can register as a computer user by a standard process. If you are not a student or a member of staff, as part of the registration process you will sign a form which states that you have read the Regulations and Code of Conduct for the Use of IT Facilities and agree to be bound by them. These are a formal statement of the rules that apply to the use of the facilities. Copies of these regulations are posted on notice boards and are published in the University Calendar. This document is an informal guide to what constitutes acceptable behaviour when using the university's computing facilities and which will help guarantee conformance with these regulations.
- When you register you will be given a userid and a password. This userid is your personal identification and along with your password serves to authenticate you to the system and to grant access to the facilities you are authorised to use. You must keep your password secure and secret. You should not allow any other individual to access the computer facilities by way of your userid nor should you use or attempt to use the facilties through someone elses userid. You should not do anything that attempts to find out another users userid/password combination. All of these activities are technically offences under the Computer Misuse Act. In general, your use of the computing facilities should not interfere with or cause difficulties for other users. Any attempt to gain access to information or facilities owned by another user and to which you have not been granted authorisation is prohibited.
- As a user you will have access to electronic mail facilities. These are provided to improve communications among staff and students for matters relating to their roles within the University and for career development. Personal use is permitted so long as it is demonstrably reasonable and judicious. It should be noted that sending electronic mail to a bulletin board or even to a list of recipients constitutes publishing the contents and the Guidelines for Electronic Publishing should be followed.
- As a user you will also have access to the vast quantities of information that is available on the internet, particularly via the World Wide Web. Again these facilities are provided to enable access to information relevant to your work within the University and for career development. Personal use is again permitted so long as it is demonstrably reasonable and judicious. Specifically this should not involve access to material of a nature which might bring discredit to you or the University, e.g. material of a pornographic, criminal or offensive nature. If you need to access information as part of your particular university work which might be questionable, you should clear this use in advance with your Head of Department and the Director of the Computing Services should be notified.
- There are many ways that as a user you will be able to make information available to other users, both other users of the University's network or externally to users of the internet. In particular, many of you will be able to publish material on the World Wide Web. The Guidelines for Electronic Publishing should be followed, and nothing should be published in this way which could be considered to be discreditable. Again, if publication of questionable material is essential as part of your academic work, this should be cleared with your Head of Department and the Computing Services Department.
- The University operates on the basis of trust. However, if there are reasonable grounds for suspecting that an individual is engaging in activities which are in breach of the regulations or of the various guidelines, the University reserves the right to investigate fully. In the event that misuse is suspected the University will take appropriate action to investigate the matter which may include direct monitoring of the use made by the user. Such monitoring will require the permission of the Secretary of the University Court or his/her nominee. If misuse is established, disciplinary action will be taken, referring the matter to the police in the event of contravention of legislation.
- As a feature of your use of the computing facilities you will gain access to a large amount of software and other computer based information. Virtually all of this material is subject to copyright. Copies of this material may not be made without the approval of the copyright owner; software in particular may not be copied for use on other machines nor may it be passed on to other people or even other users within the University unless explicit permission to do so has been obtained.