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These guidelines, established by the Task Force on Computing at Duquesne University, are based on a commitment to support ethical behavior in every aspect of the University community. They rely on common sense and ethical behavior to protect the privacy and access rights of each member of the community. Be aware that failure to adhere to these guidelines can result in the suspension of computing privileges, charges being brought before the judicial board, and prosecution under state and federal laws, where applicable.

Students, faculty and administrators at Duquesne University have two basic rights regarding computing: privacy and access to an equitable share of hardware, software, and network resources. It is unethical for any other person to violate these rights. University-owned computing resources are intended for administrative, research and educational purposes only; they should be used in a manner consistent with the administrative, instructional and research objectives of the University. They should not be used for personal profit, commercial development, frivolous or illegal activities.

  1. Duquesne University maintains public access computing labs for use by Duquesne faculty, students and staff only. Use of these labs by University related persons is encouraged and supported. Use of these facilities by non-University related persons are prohibited.
  2. Computers in individual student rooms, faculty, and staff offices are for use by authorized persons only. These machines are considered to be under the control of those individuals.
  3. Central and network computer access is protected by password security. Protect yourself and your computer accounts by not divulging your password to others, changing your password frequently and deleting unwanted files. If another user should gain access to your password, change it immediately.
  4. Access to computer programs and files are restricted to authorized users. Respect the privacy of others by not intentionally seeking information about passwords or files belonging to other users unless explicitly authorized to do so by those users.
  5. Computer mail (e-mail) is a resource widely distributed and supported on the Duquesne Campus. Be aware that the Electronic Communications Privacy act places electronic mail in the same category as messages delivered by the U.S. Postal Service. This means that tampering with electronic mail, interfering with, or intercepting the delivery of mail and the use of electronic mail for criminal purposes may be felony offenses. Use electronic mail for the appropriate educational, instructional and administrative purposes only. It is a violation of the Computing Policies of the University to start or forward chain letters. This behavior is also in violation of most network policies. You should be aware that chain letters can quickly degrade network performance and policies against them are needed to ensure that all users can complete their work effectively. In addition, University policy prohibits users from sending threatening, obscene, or harassing messages to other users.
  6. Computer resources, while widely available, are finite. Exercise common sense regarding shared resources. Refrain from engaging in deliberately wasteful practices — for example, excessive use of peer-to-peer applications, excessive printing, using the laser printer as a copy machine (printing multiple copies of a document), making unnecessary laser printouts (printing after every editing change) or unnecessarily holding public PCs or workstations for long periods of time when other users are waiting for these devices.
  7. It is the policy and practice of the University to respect the copyright protection given to copyright owners by federal law. It is against policy, and illegal, for any student, faculty or staff member to copy or reproduce any copyrighted material using University computing resources except as expressly permitted by the software license. Respect appropriate laws and copyrights. Requests for the duplication or installation of software will not be honored without proof of license or proof of purchase.
  8. Academic communities are by nature open. Respect the spirit of academia. The theft, mutilation or abuse of public or private computing resources violates the nature and spirit of the academic environment. Keep in mind that theft and abuse of computing facilities is a disservice to other users and deteriorates the computing environment in general. This theft includes theft of services. Acts of theft are referred to both the University judicial board and the campus police.
  9. Computer systems, software, applications and other resources are provided for the benefit of the individuals within the University community. Deliberate or suspicious introduction of computer viruses, deletion or removal of software programs or files is a violation of computer usage policies. Acts of this nature are referred to the University judicial board for disposition.
  10. The University supports the rules of use stipulated and recommended by the Internet and BITNET. Follow established guidelines for any networks or systems used both inside and outside the University. If you work on networks outside the University, such as Internet, you should use these facilities according to the network’s user guidelines. In addition to network guidelines, you should follow instructions established for the content of messages posted to gopher servers, bulletin boards, news conferences and mailing lists.
  11. Lab consultants are provided in several of the public computing labs on campus. Respect the purpose of lab consultants. The consultants are available to provide assistance in the use of the equipment and software. They can explain error messages, determine the cause of an error, suggest ways to avoid certain problems, provide information on software and hardware facilities, and direct you to documentation. Lab consultants are not subject tutors and should not be expected or asked to ‘do’ the assigned work for you.
  12. Alias email accounts are available for administrators, staff, and graduating students only. Such accounts will only be maintained on mail.duq.edu, and must meet the following criteria:
    1. One-full time employee must take responsibility for the account, including knowledge of the password and all personnel given access to said account.
    2. Said employee must maintain the account, which includes changing the password each semester and distributing the password only to departmental personnel.
    3. Said employee must use the account only for University-related mail (not personal mail).
    4. Said employee must agree to follow the above Computing Ethics and Guidelines.
    5. Alias accounts will be reviewed on an annual basis by the CTS accounts staff.
  13. All faculty, administrative and student use of computers is governed by this guideline statement. Users requesting access to University computing resources will be required to sign a statement on the user account request form indicating that they have read, understand and agree to abide by these guidelines and sanctions indicated herein.