Computer Conduct Policy
College computer systems are provided by WITCC for use by students, faculty, and staff for the purpose of furthering the educational mission of the College, this includes course work, college-related educational endeavors, and business operations. Each user is expected to follow established computer conduct policies and not to interfere with or disrupt the orderly processes of WITCC resources. Users accept the responsibility for utilizing services in ways that are ethical, that demonstrate academic integrity and respect for others who share this resource. Users must follow all existing federal, state, and local laws as they relate to computer conduct.
Acts of misconduct which will be the cause for disciplinary action up to and including discharge, as well as possible legal and/or civil action:
- Unauthorized copying of anything that is licensed or protected by copyright. This includes, but is not limited to any software (including operating systems, programs, applications, databases, or code), multimedia files (including music, movies, or audio), or text files.
- "Computer hacking" (i.e. unwanted or unsolicited entry into a computer system). This includes, but is not limited to, successful acts of hacking, unsuccessful hacking attempts, possession of the tools used for computer hacking, or running programs that attempt to identify passwords or codes.
- Knowingly introducing a "computer virus" to a computer or network (i.e. a program - either harmless or damaging - which attaches itself to another program and/or has the capability to reproduce in order to infect other computers).
- Gaining unauthorized access to information that is private or protected or attempting to do so. Willful damage or misuse of systems, applications, databases, code, or data. Attempting to gain network privileges to which you are not entitled.
- Unauthorized alteration of system configuration. This includes, but is not limited to, interrupting programs that protect data or secure systems, or attempting to do so. Downloading and/or installing software, or attempting to do so.
- Introducing or using profanity/obscenities on the network including, but not limited to, the campus network, Internet, or any other communications configuration which is accessible by or connected to College computers or computer systems.
- Using the network to conduct business or solicit services, and/or develop, introduce, or circulate inflammatory comments or subjects.
- Sharing of assigned logins with anyone else for any reason. Unauthorized use of another person's login or attempting to do so. Unauthorized use of a generic login outside of the context for which that login was created. Each student/employee will be responsible for all activities under his/her assigned login.
- Inappropriate or misuse of e-mail. This involves sending unsolicited e-mail (including junk mail, jokes, or chain letters) to users of the College's e-mail system that is of a non-business nature.
- Installing unauthorized personal hardware or software to any computer or network.
Respectful Exchange of Ideas and Information
Computer systems and networks allow for a free exchange of ideas and information. This exchange serves to enhance learning, teaching, critical thinking and research. While the constitutional right of free speech applies to communication in all forms, we encourage civil and respectful discourse. College policy and local, state and federal law do prohibit some forms of communication, to include:
- obscenity, lewd, or sexually harassing images or text
- advocacy directed to incite or produce lawless action
- threats of violence
- harassment based on sex, race, disability or other protected status
- anonymous or repeated messages designed to annoy, abuse or torment
Each individual who is given a computer and/or e-mail account, or uses the computers and network resources made available by Western Iowa Tech Community College, must understand that you are accountable for the policies set forth in this document. In addition, users assume responsibility for:
- protection of your password
- reporting any breech of system security
- reporting unauthorized use of your account
- changing your password on a regular basis
- frequently making back-up copies of your work to ensure against loss
- clearly label works and opinions as your own before they are widely distributed
The Information Technology Department may access other's files for the maintenance of networks, computers and storage systems. Data, information, & files stored in electronic form on college owned equipment and/or transmitted across college owned networks is the property of Western Iowa Tech, and no right to privacy can be assumed. Office staff may also routinely monitor and log usage data, such as network connection times, CPU and disk utilization for each user, security audit trails, and network loading. Data collected may be reviewed and further investigated should evidence of violation of policy or law occur. If necessary, staff may monitor the activities and files of specific users on the college computers and networks. Any staff member who believes such monitoring is necessary should discuss the problem and strategy for investigation with the Executive Director, Information Technology.
Any student who violates the policies set forth in this document is subject to disciplinary action as defined in the Students' Rights and Responsibilities section of the Student Handbook. Faculty and staff who violate these policies are subject to disciplinary action as defined in the Employee Handbook. All violators may be subject to arrest according to local, state and federal law.
WITCC Board Policy 400.48 & 504.3