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Computer Use Policy



A. IWP provides information technology resources that include a high-speed local area network, shared network software and storage space, Internet access, computing facilities, telephone and voicemail services, electronic information services including full-text databases, and support services. Access to these resources is given to members of the IWP community—faculty members, currently enrolled students, and administrative staff. Limited access may be granted to participants in special programs or to sponsored guests hosted by IWP. These resources are provided to support the educational program and administrative operations of IWP, and they may not be used for private financial gain for any individual or organization.

B. IWP’s information technology resources may not be used in the furtherance of illegal activities, whether the activities are conducted on or off campus. Using computing resources in a way that violates the law, other IWP policies, or the rights of others can be a serious matter that will be dealt with by the applicable IWP disciplinary procedures. In instances where outside authorities bring to IWP’s attention a reasonable suspicion of illegal activity, IWP typically cooperates with the outside authorities to investigate, and if appropriate, to assist in prosecution of the offense.

C. By sharing and using IWP’s computer resources, members of the IWP campus community accept full responsibility for their actions and agree that they will use these resources in a responsible manner, consistent with the policies of IWP and compliant with local, state, and federal laws and regulations governing the use of such resources. The fact that certain activities are technically feasible does not mean that they are necessarily acceptable. Users must abide by all applicable restrictions, whether or not they are built into the operating system or network and whether or not they can be circumvented by technical means. Users may not access any areas of the information technology resources of IWP to which they do not have authorization and may not exceed any access for which they are authorized.

D. As members of the IWP community, users of information technology resources are expected to honor intellectual property rights, respect individual privacy, show consideration for the rights of others, and behave in an ethical manner. The privileges of academic freedom and freedom of expression can be exercised by those using IWP’s information technology resources, but they do not override these responsibilities in this medium. The community values and standards of conduct that inform face-to-face interactions should also guide on-line interactions.


A. IWP owns and maintains the resources which its students, faculty, and staff use to create and record information related to the educational program and to administrative operations. IWP does not subject users’ communications or files to prior review and therefore cannot reasonably be aware of, or responsible for, material community members may post, send or publish using its network, servers, and other resources including the Web. However, IWP is committed to educate the community in responsible use of information technology resources and will respond as appropriate when notifified of violations of this policy.

B. Information Technology (IT) manages IWP’s information technology resources and strives to provide a reliable and secure technology environment.  Members of the IT staff, including outside vendors and contractors who assist in providing IWP’s information technology services, are expected to adhere to the highest ethical standards regarding confidentiality of data and individual privacy.  Contents of data and voice systems may not be disclosed to unauthorized persons.  But system administrators may access and disclose such contents when they determine such access and disclosure are necessary to protect the integrity of information technology resources, to ensure that these resources are equitably shared, or to respond to subpoenas, court orders, or other valid forms of legal process.  In addition, IWP has the right to access and disclose the contents of data and voice systems when it reasonably determines that such access and disclosure are necessary to respond to health and safety emergencies or to disciplinary processes related to violations of College policies.


A. Security. IWP employs various measures to protect the security of its information technology resources and of users’ accounts.  However, IWP cannot guarantee such security.  Individuals should engage in safe computing practices by establishing appropriate access restrictions for their accounts and by maintaining the currency of virus protection and operating system patches.  Passwords should not be shared with others and should be changed regularly.  Users are expected to remember to exit from any networked applications that require a password and log out before leaving a networked computer or office computer.  Because compromised machines present a risk to the community, IT reserves the right to disable access to the network immediately if a machine is found to be infected with a virus or operating in such a way that network security is at risk.  Users are expected to assist IT in the performance of remediation steps in the event of a detected vulnerability and must do so before network access will be restored.

B. Identity. Anonymous messages and forged identities are not allowed in IWP’s e-mail and conferencing system.  Any electronic message must include the sender’s actual user name or, in appropriate cases, the institution’s name.  Hiding identity or using someone else’s identity in electronic communications jeopardizes the integrity of the system and is prohibited.

C. Privacy. Email is not necessarily a secure and confidential medium for communications.  Intruders can obtain the contents and other information about an email communication at various points of access during the course of transmission of the communication.  In addition, as noted earlier, disclosure to third parties may be required in order for IWP to comply with legal process.  Privacy is also the responsibility of the recipient of an email or other electronic communication.  While IWP has no blanket policy that regulates or prohibits forwarding messages or postings, respect for individual privacy and consideration for the rights of others should be taken into account before forwarding email and conference postings to others.  When in doubt, the author should be asked for consent before forwarding her or his message as the best way to protect the privacy of the sender.

Personal information provided by IWP students, alumni, faculty, staff, or visitors to IWP’s web site is not disclosed to third parties, unless the third party is an institutionally-authorized provider of services to IWP.

D. Sexual Harassment and Hateful Incidents. No form of sexual harassment or hateful incident will be tolerated.  Untrue and/or reckless statements made about others may form the basis for a civil defamation claim.

E. Resource Consumption. IWP’s information technology resources are shared by the community.  Consuming an unreasonable amount of these resources or interfering with the activity of other users is not allowed.  Activities that may cause excessive demands on network resources include chain mail, spam email, posting unsolicited messages that are not appropriate to the topic designated for a conference, “bombing” a conference by relentless posts in short periods of time, or downloading an excessive number of very large files.

F. Intellectual Property.  Copyright law and licenses protect such things as software, photographs, icons, music, movies, computer games, and text against unauthorized copying (which includes lending such things to others with knowledge that they will copy them).  A computer may enable users to copy programs and other intellectual property easily, but unless the user is certain about the legal entitlement to do so, the user should refrain.  The legal penalties can be severe and outside the control of IWP.  If IWP officials receive notice from or on behalf of a copyright owner alleging that auser has engaged in a copyright violation, the user’s access to the network may be temporarily disabled.  IT staff will notify the user to stop such activities immediately and assist as needed in removing the infringing material.  If the user does not comply or engages in repeated violations, the user’s network connectivity may be terminated and the user could be subject to other IWP disciplinary actions.

G. Commercial Use. IWP’s information technology resources are provided in support of the educational mission and may not be used for any commercial purposes or for private financial gain for any individual or organization.