This document defines a library-wide policy for the proper use of all TMC Library computers and network resources, as well as equitable access and proper management of those resources. Access to networks and computer systems owned or operated by The TMC Library imposes certain responsibilities and obligations.
Acceptable use must always be legal, ethical, reflect academic honesty, reflect community standards, show restraint in the use of shared resources, and not subject The TMC Library to disrepute. Access must respect the intellectual property of The TMC Library, authorized users and third parties and the ability of all users to utilize the systems to accomplish their work .
Authorized Use – Authorized use of TMC Library owned or operated computing and network resources is use consistent with the education, research and service mission of The TMC Library and consistent with the policies and procedures of TMC institutions.
Authorized User – An authorized user is anyone who is part of the The TMC Library community who has requested and been granted access to specified information technology resources of the Library.
The TMC Library equipment – Library equipment includes computers, peripherals, software and network resources owned, leased or licensed by The TMC Library including any data element which is stored, transmitted or accessed with such equipment.
Data Element – A data element is an identifiable piece of data which can have unique access attributes. Examples of data elements include but are not limited to: files, electronic mail messages (e-mail), mail folders, Netnews articles, attachments such as images or web pages.
Public Systems – Equipment provided by The TMC Library for the public and free use of its patrons.
Expectation of Privacy
- The TMC Library equipment is to be solely used to accomplish the mission of the TMC communities. All data elements on The TMC Library’s public equipment is owned by The TMC Library or under the operational control and guardianship of The TMC Library and subject to examination by the The TMCLibrary at its discretion.
- Data elements contained on public equipment should not be considered private.
- Expectation of privacy notwithstanding, the action of looking at, copying, altering or destroying data without explicit permission of the owner of the data or by authorized administrators is prohibited. The ability of a user to access a particular data element does not imply permission has been granted for access to that data element.
- The TMC Library may employ mechanisms to track access to Library equipment by third parties and access by authorized users to non-Library locations.
Access to Resources
- The TMC Library and not its employees, faculty or clients either owns or licenses Library equipment.
- Public Systems at The TMC Library are automatically logged into the resources necessary for the systems to properly function.
Attempts to Circumvent Security
- Attempting to circumvent or subvert any system or network security measure is prohibited.
- Attempting to decode or intercept access control mechanisms such as passwords is prohibited.
- The possession of tools and/or software packages designed to circumvent security, decode access control mechanism or locate deficiencies in system security are forbidden.
- Monitoring of network traffic is prohibited.
- Deliberate attempts to degrade the performance of a computer system or network or to deprive Authorized Users of access to resources are prohibited.
The following activities are specifically prohibited:
- The creation or propagation of computer viruses.
- Disrupting services.
- Damaging data elements.
- Intentional destruction or damage of computer or network equipment, software or data elements located at The TMC Library.
- Attempting to exploit or exploiting vulnerabilities in system or network security.
- Violating the Intellectual Property & Copyright Policy or applicable state or federal laws, including but not limited to copyright laws and computer crime statutes.
Use of Resources
- The Internet does not guarantee the privacy and confidentiality of information. Sensitive material transferred over the Internet may be at risk of detection by third parties. Likewise, third parties may track your movements. Employees must exercise caution and care when transferring and accessing material in any form.
- Just as The TMC Library tracks Internet usage for security purposes, most Internet services, especially including Web sites, track your visit as a Library user. Authorized users represent The TMC Library and their communications with Library equipment should be conducted in a professional manner at all times.
- Transmitting obscene, indecent, or lewd material or information, which contains profane language or panders to bigotry, racism, sexism, or other forms of discrimination, is prohibited.
- TMC Library equipment may not be used to provide personal business services or products.
- Users of a particular host or network will abide by the resource usage rules established by the administrators of that machine and shall not attempt to circumvent those rules.
- Users shall not implement services or programs which have the potential of adversely impacting the ability of other users without permission of the system administrators.
- Violations of the acceptable use policies for specific services will not be allowed.
- Authorized users must report any evidence of violation of the above Policy and Procedures to The TMC Library Information Technology Team which is the designated entity for this purpose.
- Users shall not initiate nor propagate any electronic mail version of a chain letter.
- Users shall not send unsolicited electronic mail to other users.
- Forging the header information to make the electronic mail message seem to originate from someone other than the sender is prohibited.
Data Security/Integrity (Viruses)
- The ability to download data elements comes with a risk of having electronic viruses downloaded as well. The TMC Library prohibits using any data element which has not been scanned for viruses prior to use. Before using any data element which is susceptible to viral infection, Authorized Users must check it for infection.
- If a virus is detected, User Support Services must be notified immediately.
- It is The TMC Library’s policy to strictly comply with copyright laws.
- It is a violation of this policy for authorized users to copy, duplicate, install, electronically forward, distribute or use copyrighted works including but not limited to software, images, data, sounds (including music) and multimedia works which infringes on the copyright of another. Improper copying includes but is not limited to electronic copying, downloading or transferring and printing copyrighted works via the Internet.
- Exceptions – Any activities which are at variance with the above policy and procedure must be authorized by the Associate Director for Information Technology (AD-IT), Executive Director or personnel explicitly designated by the AD-IT or Executive Director as having the authority to grant variances. Variances can be granted on a case-by-case basis and the granting of a variance does not provide a precedent for or imply future exceptions.
- Violations of any of the policies contained in this policy will not be condoned by The TMC Library.
- Violations of these policies will result in a formal investigation by the Library’s Information Technology Team.
- Violators will be given the right to provide written and oral statements to document their perception of the incident, which will be made a part of the investigation.
Violations may result in a range of disciplinary actions including:
- Informal Warning – The violator will be warned to not repeat the offense. No notification to any other groups within The TMC Library will be made.
- Formal Warning – The violator will be given a formal letter outlining the violation and warning them that further violations of this policy may result in more serious penalties. Copies of the warning will be sent to the violator’s supervisor and the The TMC Library entity which maintains their record to be placed in the violator’s record.
- Temporary Suspension of Access – The violator will have their access to some or all information technology resources temporary suspended.
- Permanent Denial of Access – The violator will be permanently denied access to some or all information technology resources.
- Suspension – The violator may be temporarily suspended from The TMC Library as a whole.
- Criminal Prosecution – The TMC Library reserves the right to file criminal charges for the incident against the violator.