Loyola University Chicago

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Loyola University Chicago

Information Technology Services

Use of Electronic Mail Systems

Loyola University Chicago provides computing, networking, telephony and information resources for access and use by students, faculty, staff and other persons associated with the University. These resources include the access and use of the university electronic mail systems. The University community is encouraged to use electronic mail to enhance productivity through the efficient and cost-effective exchange of information to advance the education, research, health care and public service missions of the University.

The University has the responsibility and duty to maintain the integrity, operation and availability of its electronic mail systems for access and use by the University community to advance the University's missions in education, research, health care and public service. Access to the University network and its electronic mail systems is a privilege and certain responsibilities accompany that privilege. All electronic mail files which are transmitted and received using University networks or which are stored on University systems are University records.

This policy pertains to the access and responsible use of University electronic mail systems. All who access and use University electronic mail systems must abide by all applicable policies, legal and contractual requirements, and the highest standard of ethical principles and practices, when using this university resource.

Use of University electronic mail systems will constitute awareness and acceptance of the responsibilities regarding the access and responsible and ethical use of these systems as presented in this and other access and acceptable use policies of University computing, networking, telephony and information resources.

Individuals covered

This policy applies to all persons accessing and using University electronic mail systems. These persons include students, faculty, staff, persons retained to do University work, and any other person extended access and use privileges by the University given the availability of these systems, and in accordance with University contractual agreements and obligations.

Electronic mail systems covered

This policy applies to all electronic mail systems operated or contracted by the University, or connected to the University network. The policy also applies to any electronic mail transmission identified (e.g., the From: field in the mail header) with an electronic mail address containing the Internet domain name assigned to the University, i.e., luc.edu.

Guidelines on electronic mail use

Access to and the responsible and ethical use of information technology are essential to the pursuit and achievement of excellence at Loyola University Chicago. The University encourages appropriate use of its electronic mail systems to enhance productivity through the efficient and cost-effective exchange of information to advance the University's mission in education, research, health care and public service. Use of these resources must be consistent with these goals. These resources must not be used to impede or hinder the University mission. The primary use of a University electronic mail system must be related to the University's educational, research, health care and public service missions and to the person's educational, scholarly, research, service, operational or management activities within the University. Incidental and occasional personal use is permitted, but it is expected to comply with all university policies and it will be treated no differently than other e-mail messages. As responsible and ethical members of the University community, we are expected to act by the following general guidelines based on common sense, common decency, and civility applied to the University networked computing environment.

The same standards of conduct expected of students, faculty and staff regarding the use of telephones, libraries and other institutional resources apply to the use of electronic mail systems. You will be held no less accountable for your actions in situations involving electronic mail than you would be in dealing with other communications media. You are expected to abide by the security restrictions on all systems and information to which you have access. You should avoid any communication where the meaning of the message, or its transmission or distribution, would be illegal, unethical or irresponsible. Conduct that involves the use of electronic mail to violate a University policy or regulation, or to violate the rights of another, is a serious abuse subject to limitation of your electronic mail and networking access privileges and appropriate disciplinary action.

Privacy on University electronic mail systems

The University community must recognize that electronic communications are hardly secure and the University cannot guarantee privacy. The University will not monitor electronic mail messages as a routine matter. But the University reserves the right to inspect, access, view, read and/or disclose an individual's computer files and e-mail that may be stored or archived on University computing networks or systems, for purposes it deems appropriate. There may arise situations in which an individual's computer files and e-mail may be inspected, accessed, viewed, read and/or the contents may be revealed or disclosed. These situations include but are not limited to:

Integrity and confidentiality on university electronic mail systems

Just as the University cannot guarantee privacy when it comes to electronic mail systems, the University cannot guarantee the integrity of all electronic mail messages, e.g., content and mail headers of electronic mail messages can be modified before they are forwarded to another recipient. The University also cannot guarantee the preservation of confidentiality of any information passing through its electronic mail systems. The University electronic mail systems should not be used to transmit sensitive or confidential information without the use of more secured methods, e.g., encryption devices. In general, if the information should not be appearing in a local newspaper it should not be sent through the University electronic mail system without the use of more secured methods. Use discretion and keep in mind that an electronic mail message transmitted without the use of more secured methods is similar to a post card.

Actions of system administrators of University electronic mail systems

A system administrator of a University electronic mail system may determine within his or her discretion when it is necessary to temporarily suspend access to the electronic mail system to insure the integrity and operation of the electronic mail system and its availability to the University community. System administrators who suspend access of students to University electronic mail systems should report the actions to the Office of Student Affairs as soon as possible, along with an explanation for taking the action. In some cases, system administrators may need to work with the Office of Student Affairs to make arrangements to permit these students sufficient access to the University electronic mail to complete course work.

Appeal of an administrative decision

Individuals who disagree with a decision of a system administrator of a University electronic mail system may submit an appeal of the decision to the appropriate resource manager or systems administrator. From there, a student may submit an appeal to the Dean of Students, a faculty member through their department administration either to the Senior Vice President Dean of Faculties or to the Senior Vice President for the Health Sciences, and a staff member through their management to the Vice President for Human Resources. Individuals must submit these appeals according to any rules and procedures issued by system or network administrators, or component administrators.

Noncompliance and sanctions

Reports of incidents regarding inappropriate use of University electronic mail systems as they pertain to this policy should be referred to the Dean of Students if the alleged sender is a student, to the academic department or institute administrator, if the alleged sender is a faculty member, and to the immediate supervisor if the alleged sender is a non-faculty staff member. Breach of or disregard for this and other policies and procedures concerning access and acceptable use of computing, networking, telephony and information resources may result in the denial or removal of access privileges by system or network administrators, and may lead to disciplinary action under the applicable University's standards of conduct, i.e., Student Handbook (students),Faculty Handbook(faculty) and Employee Handbook and Personnel Policies (staff). Additionally, such disregard may be referred to other authorities for civil litigation and criminal prosecution under applicable state and federal statutes. As e-mail is a privilege extended to the University community to facilitate communication, staff members should utilize it ethically and within bounds of this and other University policies. Staff employees can be disciplined for misuse or unauthorized use of e-mail up to and including suspension of privileges for a particular period of time, suspension from the job or termination. Such actions can be taken by the department head in consultation with Human Resources as part of the Progressive Discipline procedure. In some cases, the University authority handling the incident report may request that the system administrator suspend the access to a University electronic communication system by the individual under investigation. For example, the Office of the Dean of Students may request that access be suspended pending the outcome of conduct hearing process, or a department administrator may request that access be suspended for a staff person pending the outcome of an investigation or disciplinary process.

Legal context for this policy

Regarding legal context, all existing laws (local, state and federal) and University policies, regulations and rules apply, including not only those laws, policies, regulations and rules that are specific to computers and networks, but also those that apply generally to personal conduct including Policy and Procedures on Sexual Harassment and Policy and Procedures for Racial Discrimination, Abuse and Harassment.

Relationship of this policy with others

This policy supplements the Access and Acceptable Use of University Computing, Networking, Telephony, and Information Resources, Rights and Responsibilities for the Access and Use of Computing, Networking, Telephony and Information Resources, Policy and Guidelines Regarding the Use of University Electronic Mail Systems for Electronic Mass Communications, and the Access and Acceptable Use of Public Access Computing and Networking Facilities and Services which are available and can be found on the Loyola University Chicago campus-wide information servers.

The University reserves the right to change the information, requirements and procedures announced in this policy. This policy will continue to be in effect until a further revision is required and promulgated. Consult the campus computing center or the appropriate system administrator for information on other policies, procedures or directives that supplement this policy.

Suggestions and comments concerning the Policy Regarding Access and Responsible Use of University Electronic Mail Systems can be directed to the University Information Security Office at datasecurity@luc.edu

History and Updates

April 2, 1997: Initial Policy
August 23, 1997: Revised
February 4, 1998: Revised
October 30, 2012: Annual Review for PCI Compliance, Revised contact information
July 17, 2013: Annual Review for PCI Compliance
Author: UISO
Version: 1.1
 
 
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Loyola

Information Technology Services
1032 W. Sheridan Ave. · Chicago, IL 60660 · 773.508-4ITS

InfoServices@luc.edu

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