1.0 Purpose

Germanna Community College’s computers, networks and information systems exist to promote shared access to computing, communication and information systems necessary to support the College’s mission of teaching research and community service. Thus, all account holders of College information facilities have responsibility to use these systems in a respectful, ethical, professional and legal manner.

2.0 Policy

Germanna’s Computer use Policy applies to any employee using GCC-owned or leased computers, networks, Internet connections, and communications systems transmitting either data, voice or video information. Activities involving these systems shall be in accordance with the requirements of the VCCS Employee Acceptable Use Agreement and the VCCS Security Plans.

3.0 Procedures

3.1 A user of the Virginia Community College System’s local and shared computer systems shall agree to abide by the VCCS acceptable use agreement terms. These terms govern access to and use of the information technology applications, services, and resources of the VCCS and the information they generate.

3.2 The college grants access to users as a necessary privilege to perform authorized functions at the institution where employed or are currently enrolled. Entrusted access control mechanisms shall only be used by the individual they were granted to and only for those purposes required to perform authorized functions related to employment. These include logon identification, password, workstation identification, user identification, digital certificates, or multi-factor authentication mechanisms.

3.3 The disclosure of information concerning any access control mechanism is prohibited unless properly authorized to do so by Germanna. All information maintained on the college computer systems should be treated as strictly confidential and only released to authorized persons.

3.4 Computer software, databases, and electronic documents are protected by copyright law. A copyright is a work of authorship in a tangible medium. Copyright owners have the sole right to reproduce their work, prepare derivatives or adaptations of it, distribute it by sale, rent, license, lease, or lending, and/or to perform or display it. An employee must either have an express or implied license to use copyrighted material or data or be able to prove fair use. Employees and other users of college computers are responsible for understanding how copyright law applies to their electronic transactions. They may not violate the copyright protection of any information, software, or data with which they come into contact through the college computing resources. Downloading or distributing copyrighted materials such as documents, movies, music, etc. without the permission of the rightful owner may be considered copyright infringement, which is illegal under federal and state copyright law. Use of the college’s network resources to commit acts of copyright infringement may be subject to prosecution and disciplinary action.

3.5 The penalties for infringing copyright law can be found under the U.S. Copyright Act, 17 U.S.C. §§ 501-513. and in the US Copyright Office’s summary of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

Employees shall abide by the Virginia Department of Human Resource Management Policy 1.75 Use of Electronic Communications and Social Media. Per the Department of Human Resources Policy 1.75: “No user shall have any expectation of privacy in any message, file, image or data created, sent, retrieved, received, or posted in the use of the Commonwealth’s equipment and/or access. Agencies have a right to monitor all aspects of electronic communications and social media usage. Such monitoring may occur at any time, without notice, and without the user’s permission.”

Other activities designated as prohibited by Germanna include but are not limited to:

3.5.1 Attempting to gain access to information owned by the college or by its authorized users without the permission of the owners of that information;

3.5.2 Accessing, downloading, printing, or storing information with sexually explicit content as prohibited by law or policy;

3.5.3 Downloading or transmitting fraudulent, threatening, obscene, intimidating, defamatory, harassing, discriminatory, or otherwise unlawful messages or images;

3.5.4 Installing or downloading computer software, programs, or executable files contrary to policy;

3.5.5 Uploading or downloading copyrighted materials or proprietary agency information contrary to policy;

3.5.6 Sending e-mail using another’s identity, an assumed name, or anonymously;

3.5.7 Attempting to intercept or read messages not intended for them unless authorized;

3.5.8 Intentionally developing or experimenting with malicious programs (viruses, worms, spy-ware, keystroke loggers, phishing software, Trojan horses, etc.) on any college–owned computer;

3.5.9 Knowingly propagating malicious programs

3.5.10 Changing administrator rights on any college-owned computer, or the equivalent on non-Microsoft Windows based systems unless authorized by Technical Services;

3.5.11 Using college computing resources to support any commercial venture or for personal financial gain.

3.5.12 GCC Owned equipment will not be removed offsite by an employee without completion of the VCCS Equipment Removal Form.

3.5.13 Germanna-owned equipment shall be used to conduct Virginia State or Germanna Community College business only. Germanna-owned equipment cannot be used for any commercial venture or personal financial gain. Please refer to the Department of Human Resources Policy 1.75 for more details on this.

3.5.14 Employees will not remove Mobile Device Management (MDM) software from Germanna-owned equipment unless authorized. The unauthorized removal of MDM software will result in immediate recall. Employees are responsible for damage to the device that was caused by negligence outside of standard wear and tear. (example: broken or scratched screen) The college reserves the right to assess a fair charge for damage outside of standard wear and tear. College-owned equipment shall not be altered or defaced with the addition of stickers, decals, adhesives, or cases that may damage the device. Only manufacturer-approved cables are issued with equipment for use. Aftermarket or refurbished cables shall not be used as they may damage the equipment and/or void warranties.

3.6 Access to College information systems is a privilege and may be revoked at any time on a permanent or interim basis by the College system administrators to safeguard College resources and protect College privileges. Individuals found in violation of this Policy will be held accountable and may be subject to disciplinary action.

Employees should report any incident of computer abuse, harassment, malicious behavior, and unauthorized account access to InfoSecurity@germanna.edu. For investigative purposes, individuals are advised to retain harassing e-mail messages, dates and times of unauthorized access, etc. Cases will be handled with confidentiality by the College Information Security Officer.

4.0 Definitions

Germanna Owned Electronic Equipment – Any electronic device owned or leased by Germanna Community College such as Laptops, iPad, Cameras, Memory devices, etc.

6.0 Point of Contact

Information Security Officer

7.0 Approval and Revision Dates

Leadership Council: First Reading Date - 07/23/20; Approval Date- 08/27/20


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