The acceptance of e-mail as a formal means of communication has prompted the University to adopt a new electronic mail policy that outlines acceptable use of the technology, and the responsibilities of both users and service providers.
The Board of Governors approved the policy June 23, along with an updated computer use policy. Rick Bunt, associate vice-president information and communications technology, said e-mail is now a vital part of the University’s day-to-day operation so “users need clear and concise information and guidelines to ensure it operates efficiently and effectively.”
In addition to outlining how and to whom the University provides e-mail service, the policy reminds users to manage their accounts responsibly, and conduct e-mail exchanges with professionalism and courtesy. It also addresses the user’s expectation of privacy, and the University’s right to access e-mail records when there is a clear business need.
“We have tried to be clear about privacy issues, but also about the fact the e-mail system is University property,” said Bunt. “I encourage everyone – students, staff and faculty – to review this new policy to ensure a good understanding of his or her rights and responsibilities.”
Clearly defining rights and responsibilities of users was also the driver behind a revision to the existing computer use policy, said Bunt. It had not been changed since 1995 “and there was a definite need to incorporate new technologies and to develop a framework for consistency in practices and processes across campus.”