Electronic Communications Policy

 
 
Document Number:
ITS-0002
Revision #:
v1.0
Document Owner:
Information Technology Service
Date Last Updated:
10/2/2019
Status:
Approved

General Description

Purpose:

Most members of the Trinity University community use email, text messaging, instant messaging, social media, and other electronic communications applications. Trinity University provides a @trinity.edu email address (Tmail) and extends email access and privileges to its students and employees to use in connection with their work and studies with the University. Tmail is hosted and supported by Google Apps. Email accounts should not be considered the property of the individual user who is assigned an account. All users of electronic communications should understand the responsibilities that accompany the use of these electronic communications. The Electronic Communications Policy addresses this responsibility.

Scope:

The Electronic Communications Policy applies to anyone using Trinity University’s computer systems, networks, and data systems. This includes faculty and staff members, students, alumni, contractors, guests, and other members of the University community.  

Exceptions:

None.
Policy Content
Trinity operates the email system with full respect for privacy and confidentiality in accordance with relevant laws, regulations, and University policy. While Trinity permits limited personal use of the email infrastructure, those availing themselves of such privilege are subject to the same rules, regulations, laws, and policies as University business email. All users of electronic communications should understand the limitations of privacy and confidentially related to them. They should not be used for confidential communication or the transmission of sensitive data. See the University's Information Security Policy for additional information.

The Trinity University community should also be aware of the following issues regarding electronic communications:
The use of the Trinity University voicemail system should be used appropriately, efficiently in an ethical and lawful manner, consistent with University policies. Guidelines surrounding use of voicemail follow general rules of common sense and common courtesy, and include the following: 
Trinity University has the right and ability to access individual email accounts, despite the fact that a user has established personal login credentials. However, Trinity University and its agents or custodians of the email system will not access or disclose the content of an individual’s Tmail account unless the University has a good faith belief that the terms of acceptable use have been violated. In addition to a good faith belief of a violation, permission must be secured from the appropriate member of leadership designated for each constituency. They are as follows:
If a user is on leave from work, for any reason, a manager may be given access to that individual’s account for business continuation purposes. Whenever possible, arrangements should be made before a leave if the need for access is foreseeable. Managers will need to demonstrate to the appropriate authorizer why access to a user’s account is warranted and to the extent possible, access will be tailored to the need. Additionally, managers may request and be granted access to an individual’s email account upon termination of employment for business continuation purposes. In these instances, the manager will typically be granted access for a period no greater than one month after an employee’s last day of work. Exceptions may be made on a case by case basis with a compelling rationale. Upon the conclusion of this period, the account and its contents will be terminated.

When an individual terminates employment with Trinity University, it should be understood that access to an email account to retrieve "personal" information is not guaranteed. While Trinity University understands and allows reasonable personal use of its email system, users should take appropriate steps to ensure personal communications are secured/saved as desired. 

If it is necessary or desired that an individual maintain access to their account after termination, approval must first be secured from the CIO. Extension of access should be considered only if a legitimate business need is identified. Extension of use should not exceed three months. In such cases, the individual will be expected to adhere to the terms of acceptable use.
 
In all cases, no person may retain a copy of any private or confidential work-related email or electronically stored information after the termination of employment without the written permission of the CIO.

Trinity University faculty designated "professor emeritus" will be provided a Trinity email account for life unless that account is found to be in violation of the University policies or if dormant and unused for more than one year. Those who resign will no longer have access to their Trinity email account effective on the date of resignation.

Trinity University email is hosted and supported by Google Apps. Google has signed a contract committing them to uphold a strict privacy policy and to always treat personal information with the utmost care and security. See Google’s Privacy Policy and Gmail Program Policies for additional information.
TUNetwork and Tmail accounts are provided for all students currently enrolled in at least one class in a Trinity undergraduate or graduate program and are not provided for life. Trinity student accounts will remain active for one year after graduation. An account will be marked as eligible for deletion when:
Performance Evaluation

Consequences of Policy Violation:

Enforcement
To ensure adherence to the Electronic Communications Policy and to protect the integrity of University resources, Trinity University reserves the right as described above to monitor the electronic communications across their systems to protect the security of the University’s information, network, computing resources, and its users.

Any behavior in violation of this policy is cause for disciplinary action. Violations will be adjudicated, as appropriate, by the CIO, the Office of the Dean of Students, the Office of Housing and Residential Life, and/or the Office of Human Resources. Sanctions as a result of violations of this policy may result in, but are not limited to, any or all of the following:
  • Attending a class or meeting on responsible use issues, as well as successful completion of a follow up quiz;
  • Loss of university computing, email, and/or voicemail privileges;
  • Disconnection from the residential hall internet;
  • University judicial sanctions as prescribed by the student Code of Conduct;
  • Monetary reimbursement to the University or other appropriate sources;
  • Reassignment or removal from University housing and/or suspension or expulsion from the University;
  • Prosecution under applicable civil or criminal laws.

Reporting Violations 

Reports of problems or violations should be made through the Campus Conduct Hotline, which is a confidential, anonymous way to alert administrators of unsafe or unethical behavior. Phone 866-943-5787 or email cch@eiia.org. Further information can be found at http://www.campusconduct.com
Requirements

Approvals:

  • Chief Information Officer

Terms and Definitions:

Term:

Definition:

Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP)
Used by network devices to obtain the parameters required for operation in an Internet Protocol network
Information and Technology Resources
The full set of information technology devices (telephones, personal computers, printers, servers, networking devices, etc.) involved in the processing, storage, accessing, and transmission of information owned by, controlled by, or contracted to Trinity University. Connection of these devices can be permanent, via cable, or temporary, through telephone or other communications links. The transmission medium can be physical (e.g., fiber optic cable via FTTX) or wireless (e.g.. satellite, wi-fi, Wi-Max).
Internet Protocol (IP) Address
The address of the client on the Internet which identifies the client making any given connection to a site. Every computer connected to the Internet has an IP address which enables the identification of that computer.
Recurring mass email messages
Mass email based messages that are sent by users, departments, or offices regularly or on a scheduled basis to many recipients of the Trinity University community. This includes, but is not limited to, newsletters.
Trinity email accounts
Individual email accounts provided by the university to students, faculty, and staff with an address of @trinity.edu.
Revision Management

Revision History Log:

Revision #:

Date:

Recorded By:

v1.0
8/14/2019 11:21 AM
Courtney Cunningham