COMPUTER AND ELECTRONIC COMMUNICATION ACCESS AND USAGE AT ANNE ARUNDEL COMMUNITY COLLEGE POLICY

Access to computer and electronic communication resources, such as the Internet, electronic mail, computer labs, and net-works, is a privilege provided at the discretion of the college, to:

Acceptable uses of computer and electronic communication resources are those that support the purposes above. Computer, Internet and network usage at the college is governed by college policy as well as federal, state and local laws. Individuals who inappropriately or illegally use computing and network services and resources may suffer all applicable college and legal penal-ties for such misuse.

Access, Usage and Procedures

I. USERS OF COMPUTER AND ELECTRONIC COMMUNICATION RESOURCES

Internet, computing and network accounts at the college are generally available to faculty, staff, registered students and authorized guest users. Accounts are for the sole use of the individual to whom the account is issued. Accounts shall not be shared with others, including family members, co-workers or any other individuals. Authorized account holders shall be responsible for all use and misuse of their accounts. Specialized computing or network accounts are available to students enrolled in certain courses requiring such resources. Authorized guest use is available only at designated sites and times. All users shall adhere to this and other applicable college policies.

II. ACCEPTABLE USE

Freedom of expression of ideas is central to the academic mission of the college. Information created or transmitted on the college network or the Internet shall ordinarily be for college purposes and shall be the responsibility of the creator. Information shall not be removed from individual accounts by the college unless it has been determined that the presence of such information violates college policy or is illegal. The college does not routinely monitor computer, Internet or network activities or content. The college reserves the right to monitor its computing and network resources under appropriate circumstances and to prohibit use to protect the integrity of its computing systems. So that Internet service and the college networks are efficiently maintained, any material on any campus server shall be accessible to authorized college system or network staff when necessary to fulfill their system administration responsibilities.

To insure equitable access, system security, and proper system maintenance, access may be limited, restricted, or unavailable at times. Users shall not take actions that prevent equitable access, unfairly monopolize resources or are wasteful of resources, including creating multiple jobs or obtaining excessive output. Students, faculty, staff and authorized guest users have a right to be free from electronic harassment by any member of the college community on the basis of their sex, sexual orientation, race, national origin, age, religion, handicap or veteran status. Creating a sexually and/or racially intimidating, hostile or offensive environment is prohibited by college policy. College policy and federal law stipulate that no one shall have access to, nor shall the institution disclose, any personally identifiable information from students' electronic or other education records except in certain situations defined by the law, college policy or with the written con-sent of the student. The college shall not electronically distribute private information about students, faculty or staff without the express permission of the individual. XX

III. INAPPROPRIATE AND UNACCEPTABLE USE

For the purposes of this policy, inappropriate use includes, but is not limited to, the following:

  1. Plagiarism; falsification, forgery, or modification of college- related documents, including the college logo; unauthorized use of the college name; false representation; unauthorized use of the account or files of another individual; forgery to conceal identity.
  2. Harassment of any type or form.
  3. Destruction, impairment or misuse of private or college property or facilities including hardware, software and data; actions which obstruct, disrupt or interfere with any college activity; theft of accounts and security attacks; attempts to disguise the identity of the computer being used or accessed; circumvention of data protection schemes.
  4. Electronic mail chain letters, spamming, bomb or death threats.
  5. Use of network or computing resources for personal financial gain or for private commercial activities such as creating products or services for sale.
  6. Causing excessive Internet, computing or network usage, including but not limited to, game-playing or chat functions unrelated to the mission of the college.
  7. Sending or causing to be sent obscene matter or publishing, printing, exhibiting, distributing or offering to distribute obscene matter. Lewd, indecent or obscene conduct or expression in connection with a college activity is prohibited by college policy and the law.
  8. Violation of privacy, including but not limited to, accessing, monitoring, copying, changing or deleting another individual's account, private files or electronic mail, unless authorized to do so in order to fulfill college policy or legal compliance.
  9. Violation of copyright laws. Users should assume that information on the Internet is copyrighted unless other-wise indicated. The copyright law covers all types of material on computers, the Internet and college net-works, including but not limited to software, electronic documents, Web pages, electronic mail and bulletin board postings, unless the material is copyright-free (for example, federal government documents, material that contains a statement of permission to copy or material in the public domain).

IV. PROCEDURES FOR HANDLING POLICY VIOLATIONS

Individuals violating the law or college policy shall face disciplinary action, which may include dismissal, expulsion, or any other sanction consistent with the college policy, and/or appropriate legal action. An incident report shall be prepared in all cases of potential violation of this policy. Upon determination of inappropriate usage, all computing, network and Internet user privileges may be revoked and any data associated with the account confiscated or destroyed. In general, the involvement of computing personnel in the disciplinary process shall be limited to gathering the facts of the case. In unusual circumstances, such as those requiring immediate action, corrective actions may be taken by appropriate personnel including computing personnel.

Faculty and staff: Violations of this policy by faculty and staff shall be handled according to the sanctions outlined in the appropriate sections of the College Manual or other college policies, such as the college's Sexual Harassment Policy. The incident report and all relevant documentation applicable to the alleged violation shall be presented to the supervisor of the staff or faculty member, with copies of same documents provided to the charged party.

Students: Student violations of this policy shall be handled as Acts of Misconduct as described in the Student Code of Conduct, which specifies disciplinary procedures and actions, or shall be handled according to other appropriate policies such as the college Sexual Harassment Policy. The incident report and all other relevant documentation applicable to the alleged violation shall be presented to the dean of student services or his/her designee provided to the charged party.

Authorized guest users: An incident report shall be filed in cases of violations of this policy by authorized guest users. The incident report shall be filed with the college official who granted access to the guest user. This representative shall take appropriate action, which may include revoking all access privileges and filing a report with appropriate college officials or Campus Security.

V. PERTINENT COLLEGE DOCUMENTS

College policies relevant to the use of computers, networks and electronic communication include, but are not limited to, the following documents: