Approved by Senate April 22, 2004
Amended April 28, 2005
The computing and network systems at Queen’s University are intended to support teaching, research and administrative purposes and to enhance the broader learning environment. All Queen’s computer users should be aware that they have access to valuable and sensitive resources, and that their computing and network practices can adversely affect others. Users should also understand that the Computer User Code of Ethics applies fully to the use of all personal computers and other devices while they are connected to the Queen’s network.
|Term used||Meaning or is meant to include|
|“computing and network facility”||Any personal computer, computing or network system, or communications facility owned wholly or partly by Queen’s University|
|“account”||Any account number, access code, userid or authorization code for a computing or network system or facility, together with its associated passwords and files|
|“user”||Any person using Queen’s computing and network facilities|
|“system administrator”||A person who has the authority to grant authorization to use a computing or network system or facility|
|“authorized use”||Any use of Queen’s computing and network resources that is consistent with and required for the user’s role within the University|
|“unauthorized use”||Any use that is expressly prohibited by University policy or the law, or that interferes with the ability of others to use Queen’s computing and network resources|
Section A of this document constitutes a Computer User Code of Ethics for Queen’s University, and should be read in conjunction with other information technology policies.
Section B, Procedures for Cases of Computer Abuse, outlines how alleged violations will be dealt with, and Section C, Procedures for Lodging a Complaint of Computer Abuse, is intended to be a guide for individuals or groups who feel that there has been a violation of the Code.
Violations of the Queen's Computer User Code of Ethics shall also be governed by all other applicable University policies, and proceedings under this Code do not preclude actions under other policies.
Users are ultimately responsible for any and all use of their computing and network accounts. Consequently:
Users should not divulge passwords and other access control information for their personal accounts to any other person.
Users must not use or attempt to use computing or network facilities or accounts to which they have not been granted explicit access by an appropriate system administrator. Users must use only those computing and network facilities and accounts for which they have proper authorization.
Users must use computing and network facilities and services only for the purposes for which they were authorized. Specifically, University computing and network accounts must not be:
Users must respect all software copyrights and license agreements associated with university computing and network facilities. Terms and conditions in software licenses can vary considerably. The onus is on the person using the software to familiarize themselves with their responsibilities and limitations under each software license agreement. Users must not attempt to:
Users must respect the copyright and intellectual property rights associated with information resources available to them, including documents, databases, and digital audio and digital video materials.
Users must not access data or information stored on personal or University-owned computing systems without the permission of the owner or custodian of that information.
Users must not attempt to interfere with the normal operation of computing and network systems or resources that are shared by other users.
Users must not attempt to encroach on others’ use of computing or network facilities or to deprive others of resources.
Users must not attempt to subvert the restrictions associated with their computing and network accounts.
Users must not use University computing or network facilities to do anything that is a violation of the rights of others. For example, users should not use University facilities to display, distribute or otherwise make available obscene, vulgar or harassing messages or material.
Users must not attempt unauthorized access to computing or network installations outside of Queen’s using Queen’s computers or communications facilities. More generally, users must adhere to all conditions associated with agreements between Queen’s and external network providers. (For example, see “ORION Authorized Use”).
Users must not use University computing and network resources for any activity that violates federal or provincial laws.
Although system administrators may attempt to provide and preserve security of files, account numbers, passwords and programs, it is possible that security can be breached through action or causes beyond reasonable control. Users are therefore urged to safeguard data and to take full advantage of file security mechanisms built into systems (for example by changing passwords as often as necessary). System administrators of shared facilities have a responsibility to inform users of their obligations in the use of these systems.
This document describes the procedures for when individuals (students, faculty, staff or others using computing and network facilities at Queen’s) are named in a complaint of alleged computer abuse, or are found to be in violation of the Queen’s University Computer User Code of Ethics.
In the process of investigating serious cases of alleged violations, the Director of Information Technology Services retains the ability to invoke certain emergency powers, which may include a restriction in or a complete suspension of access to computing and network facilities and services until such time that an investigation has been completed and the appropriate disciplinary body has reviewed the case. Serious cases include, but are not limited to, the following examples:
The process for dealing with an alleged violation of the Computer User Code of Ethics is as follows:
Copies of all correspondence will be included with the case as it is referred.
The following describes the procedure to be followed when individuals (internal or external to Queen’s) believe that students, faculty, staff or others using computing and network facilities at Queen’s have violated the Queen’s University Computer User Code of Ethics.
The person lodging the complaint should forward to the appropriate system administrator, in writing, details of the violation, including user information, date(s), description of the violation, etc.
The system administrator will respond to the person lodging the complaint, in writing, within 10 working days, as to the state of the complaint.
The system administrator will keep the University's Coordinator of Dispute Resolution Mechanisms informed of all complaints and actions taken.
The Queen's University Code of Conduct (PDF*, 225 KB)
Information on STOPIT!, Queen's University's initiative to stop e-mail harassment
Ontario Research and Innovation Optical Network (ORION) - Acceptable Use Policy (PDF*, 164 KB)
*PDF files can be viewed using Adobe Reader.