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1.    General.  Employee access to the Internet and college intranet is intended for academic use and to support college business processes.  Brief and occasional personal use of the Internet is acceptable as long as it is not excessive or inappropriate and occurs during personal time (lunch or other breaks).  Use is defined as "excessive" if it interferes with normal job functions, responsiveness, or the ability to perform daily job activities.  Supervisors determine the appropriateness and whether such use is excessive.  At times, network staff may contact supervisors if an employee is utilizing bandwidth that seems excessive and is interfering with normal network operations.

2.    Unauthorized Use of the Internet.  Employees are restricted from using college-owned computers to access the Internet for the following activities: 

  • Engaging in private or personal business activities
  • Engaging in unlawful or malicious activities
  • Sending, receiving, or accessing pornographic materials
  • Knowingly causing congestion, disruption, disablement, alteration, or impairment of college networks or systems.  This includes downloading streaming videos or music for personal use
  • Infringing in any way on the copyrights or trademark rights of others
  • Using recreational games
  • Defeating or attempting to defeat security restrictions on college systems and applications
  • Downloading or installing any non-standard, HCC-purchased application without prior authorization by the information technology department
  • Engaging in peer-to-peer file sharing
  • Using a proxy or other services to circumvent college security restrictions.

3.    Access to Non-Standard Ports. Access to non-standard ports is restricted for network security.  Faculty and staff should contact the information technology help desk when access to a restricted port is required for instructional or administrative purposes.

4.    Instant Messaging.  Employees must not download instant messenger clients to their desktop for the purpose of engaging in unrelated college business.  Instant messengers often bypass security firewalls and allow viruses and other malware to compromise internal computer systems.  Work centers that have a need to use this technology on campus should contact the information technology help desk.

5.    Blocked Internet Websites.  Information technology deploys technology appliances and software to block employee access to inappropriate web sites based on content categories that are determined by the appliance vendor.  Requests to access blocked sites for instructional purposes or college-related business should be sent to the information technology help desk.

Policy Manual Review/Revision:    11/13/09