Acceptable Use Policy

Acceptable Use Policy for Information Technology and Electronic Resources      4019

Southeastern Illinois College (the "College”) provides electronic information resources and other computer-based resources to support the College’s educational mission. Students, faculty, staff and others who use the College's computer-based resources are required to adhere to this policy.

This policy applies to all computer hardware and software owned or operated by the College, College electronic mail, College websites, and College on-line services and bulletin board systems.  "Use" of the College network shall include use of or obtaining access to the wired or wireless network from any electronic device whether or not owned or operated by the College. 

Acceptable Use
The use of electronic information resources, other computer-based resources and media (the “System”) must be consistent with the mission of the College. You are expected to act responsibly and follow all College policies, procedures and guidelines when using the System.  College owned electronic equipment and resources should be restricted to educational and business use.  System users have no expectation of privacy in connection with the use of the College’s System.

Access to the System is a privilege, not a right, and may be denied or revoked at any time.  Inappropriate use of the System may result in loss of privileges or other disciplinary actions as the College deems appropriate.

Security of System and Responsibilities of System Users
Security must be a high priority for all users.  System users shall not disclose their personal login ID or password/PIN to anyone, including another college employee, or attempt to log into the System as another person.

Users are prohibited from transmitting social security numbers or credit card information through email or other insecure means unless reasonable precautions are taken to encrypt or password protect the information.  All System users are required to maintain the confidentiality of student and personnel records.

Users are required to act responsibly in regards to the content and maintenance of their electronic mailbox. This includes but is not limited to general maintenance, not engaging in activities that would encourage inappropriate or illegal content, and not engaging in activities compromising System data, integrity, security, or performance.  

The College provides email systems to students and employees and evaluates the integrity, risk, and compliance aspects of each email system.  Because email accounts are assigned based on student and employee personally identifiable information, use of College email systems is the only manner in which the College and others can reasonably assume that it is communicating with the correct individual.

Students and employees who communicate via email to conduct College related business must utilize their College provided email accounts upon enrollment or employment. Prospective students or employees may temporarily use personal email accounts during the application for enrollment or employment process. Personal email accounts may also be used on a limited basis for password resets when other information is provided to identify the individual. For their own personal protection, faculty and staff are discouraged from using their College email account for personal use.

Efficient Use of Resources
Users must accept limitations or restrictions on computing resources, such as storage space, time limits or amounts of resources consumed. Users should not engage in any activity detrimentally affecting other users of the System.

User Identification
Concealing or misrepresenting one's identity is a violation of college policies, and is subject to disciplinary action.

Any type of vandalism or attempted vandalism (physical or electronic) to any part of the System, a College computer, computer peripherals, the College network, or files of others is prohibited and may result in disciplinary action. Vandalism includes, but is not limited to, malicious destruction or deletion of college information, downloading, uploading, or creation of computer viruses or malware.
Specific Prohibited Uses
In addition to the other prohibitions contained in this policy, the following activities which are unacceptable and may result in disciplinary action, include, but are not limited to:

  • Accessing, retrieve, view or disseminate obscene, indecent, sexually explicit or vulgar materials or messages unrelated to the educational mission of the college.   
  • Retrieving, view or disseminate any material in violation of any federal or state regulation/law or College policy.  This includes, but is not limited to, improper use of copyrighted material or intellectual property.
  • Intentionally manipulate information on any sensitive applications such as accounting, student, employee, and business records, or tamper and/or attempt to gain unwarranted access to student or employee personal network files. Sensitive files should be stored in a secure place.
  • Engaging in for-profit commercial activities, including advertising or sales for personal gain.
  • Sending of a chain letter.
  • Soliciting money for religious or political causes unless it is an approved fundraising activity for a student organization.   
  • Harassing, threatening, intimidating, or demeaning any person or group of people for any reason, including but not limited to race, color, religion, gender, age, national origin, citizenship status, ancestry, marital status, parental status, pregnancy, family status, military status, sexual orientation, disability, source of income, housing status, or any other category protected by law.
  • Disrupting the educational process or interfere with the rights of others.
  • Disrupting information network traffic or interfere with the network or connected systems.
  • Circumventing or attempt to circumvent system security measures through the use of software or other measures.  
  • Gaining access without permission to the files of others, or vandalize another user's data or files.
  • Gaining unauthorized access to College electronic resources or other entities using a College computer and/or network.
  • Improperly forge or alter electronic mail messages, or use an account owned by another user.
  • Invading another person's privacy. This includes, but is not limited to, improperly disclosing personally identifiable information such as name, social security number, address, or phone number.
  • Using the System or any system resources to send unsolicited commercial email.
  • Violating any software license agreement.
  • Downloading, copying, printing or otherwise storing or possessing any data, in violation of these rules and/or College policy.
  • Engaging in any unlawful use of the system.

Additional Policy Guidelines for College Employees
Employees are required to maintain a 15+ character password. Employees are required to store passwords in a secure manner. 

Employees with any device, including but not limited to cell phones, College owned or personally owned, that access College information without additional authentication/login, are required to protect that information through the use of a password or pin before that information may be accessed.

Employees are required to store college data and mission critical files on the College network. “Cloud” off-premise storage may only be used to store personal student and employee information where an approved contract or agreement exists between the College and the provider. A copy of the contract or agreement must be on file with both Information Technology and the Business Office.  Files stored on a local computer should be temporary and personal or sensitive data limited.

Employees are discouraged from using any portable media or device to store personal or private information. When use is completely unavoidable, reasonable protection of encryption and password protection of that information is required. Any data loss or misuse of personal or private information is a serious matter and the employee(s) involved may be subject to disciplinary or additional action.

Sanctions and Discipline
If an individual engages in any of the prohibited acts listed in this policy, or violates this policy and s/he may be subject to College disciplinary actions including, but not limited to, the following:

  • Suspension or revocation of System privileges;
  • Suspension or termination of employment;
  • Academic suspension or expulsion;
  • Referral to legal authorities for prosecution; and
  • Other sanctions, discipline or action the College deems warranted.

Anyone receiving disciplinary action has the right to an appeal through the College’s Disciplinary Grievance Procedures. Repeated violation of this policy will be grounds for escalated disciplinary action and/or appropriate legal action.

The College makes no warranties, whether expressed or implied, for the System. The College is not responsible for any damages suffered, including the loss of data, resulting from delays, non-deliveries, deliveries, or service interruptions. Use of information obtained via the System is at the user's own risk.  The College assumes no responsibility for the accuracy or quality of information obtained through the System. This policy and all its provisions are subordinate to local, state, and federal statutes.