HOME

 

Infringement and Illegal File Sharing Policy

Our mission in the Office of Information Technology is to provide our faculty, staff, and students with a safe and powerful computing environment. The University cannot permit our computer resources to be used for illegal purposes.

POLICY STATEMENT

The university's network connections may not be used to violate copyright laws.  The use of the University computer network to download or share copyrighted materials including, but not limited to, music, movies, software, and games is strictly prohibited for the following reasons:

  1. It is illegal. Both the U.S. Copyright Act, and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998, prohibit the distribution or sharing of copyrighted works without the copyright owner's permission.
  2. It is dangerous. Software used for file sharing may bypass your computer operating system's security and open your entire computer, along with your personal information, to anyone on the Internet which may affect your computer's performance and can cause system crashes or loss of your data.
  3. It degrades network performance. Certain programs share your files with as many computers as possible, resulting in slowing down or disabling the University's entire network.

The University places considerable effort into building and maintaining its computer network. These resources exist to support a wide variety of instructional, educational, and administrative activities. As a University member one must follow the official policies that govern computer and network usage.

SAFEGUARDS

The University exercises substantial effort to discourage illegal file sharing. Some actions include:

  1. Implementing filters to block illegal sharing of files
  2. Using network tools to detect activity and to identify violators
  3. Installing antispyware and antivirus systems to improve network

ZERO TOLERANCE AND SANCTIONS

If your computer is detected engaging in illegal file sharing or if an allegation of copyright infringement, your connection to the University network will be immediately terminated. Before your connection can be restored, you will be required to read and sign an agreement stating that you have removed the offending files and software from your computer, and that you will no longer engage in the illegal downloading and sharing of copyrighted material.

Repeat offenders may be permanently removed from the network and referred to the Dean of Students Office for disciplinary action including the possibility of expulsion if flagrant illegal activities are identified. If appropriate, violators may also be reported to the police or other government officials for criminal or civil prosecution.