Policy Governing the Use of Information Technology
This policy is presented to provide guidance and assistance to all
members of the Wilfrid Laurier University community who provide and use
information technology in the conduct of study, research, teaching and
administration. It is based on the premise that all members of the WLU
community act in a responsible and professional way.
University information technology facilities include computing
devices and associated peripherals, portable computers, communications
infrastructure and related equipment, facsimile machines, scanners,
copiers, telephones, video and other multimedia devices and all forms
of software. Such resources and tools are made available to faculty and staff in support of their teaching, research and administrative activities and to students in support of their respective academic objectives and requirements. Their use is circumscribed by this policy, the Code of Student Conduct and Discipline, the Harassment/Discrimination Policy, the Ontario Human Rights Code, the Copyright Act of Canada, the Criminal Code of Canada, and other applicable legislation.
- The hardware and licensed software available at
WLU are intended for use by the Laurier community. Use of these
resources by anyone outside WLU requires approval from the Office of
the Director of Information Technology. Users shall not disclose
confidential passwords, access codes, account numbers or other
authorization assigned to them.
- Users of information technology are expected to use the
systems in a manner that preserves the privacy of others. Users shall
to gain access to the files or directories of another user without
clear authorization from the other user. Users shall not attempt to
intercept any network communications, such as electronic mail or
Users must not attempt unauthorized access or
otherwise interfere with computing and communication installations
external to Wilfrid Laurier University using Wilfrid Laurier University
computing or communication facilities.
- Activities engaged in by users with the intention of
interfering with or altering the integrity of computing or
communication systems at WLU are unacceptable. Such activities include
unauthorized use of accounts, impersonating other individuals in
communications, attempts to capture or decode passwords or encryption,
and destruction or alteration of data or programs
belonging to other users. The wilful introduction of computer viruses
into the WLU computing environment or other environments via the WLU
network is unacceptable. The intention to restrict or deny access by
legitimate users to the system is unacceptable.
Damage, destruction or theft of hardware, software, data or related equipment is unacceptable.
- Users must not attempt to access or copy the programs and
information belonging to or licensed to Wilfrid Laurier University or
to other users unless they have proper authorization to do so. Programs
and data may not be moved from one computing system to another without
permission. Users are reminded that this applies equally to both
microcomputer and mainframe software. The terms
and conditions in software licenses vary considerably. The onus is on
users/owners to familiarize themselves with their responsibilities and
abide by limitations under each agreement.
- Users must use computing and communication facilities and
services only for the purposes for which they were authorized.
Specifically, instructional, research and administrative accounts must
not be used for private consulting or sold to other individuals; use of
any part of the computing facility for direct personal financial gain
(except for appropriate contract and external accounts) or to provide
free resources for unauthorized purposes is not allowed.
When outside professional activities of users would involve the use of
the university's computing and communication facilities, approval shall
be obtained from the Office of the Director of Information Technology
and charges shall be at the prevailing rate (unless the Office of the
Director of Information Technology agrees to waive all or part of the
- Users must be sensitive to the public nature of shared
facilities and must not print or display on screens in such locations
images, sounds or messages that are likely to create an atmosphere of
discomfort or harassment for others.
- Users must not use computing and communication facilities to
send, print or display obscene or harassing messages. Every user bears
the primary responsibility for the material he or she chooses to
access, send or display. The facilities may not be used in any manner
to create, send or display material, which contravenes relevant
policies or statutes.
Users are directed to the provisions of the Ontario Human Rights Code and the Criminal Code of Canada
for assistance in determining whether any images, sounds or messages
may be considered harassing or obscene. Further assistance in this
regard may be obtained from Laurier's harassment/discrimination
co-ordinator or the Ontario Human Rights Commission.
- Users of email and other electronic communications tools are
required to use these resources in a responsible manner consistent with
other business communications such as written correspondence and the
Responsible use of email includes:
Users should clearly identify themselves through an email
signature that specifies their name, position and contact information;
this can also include an affiliation with another institution or agency
connected with their official work, if any.
Any actions that defraud another or misrepresent or fail to accurately
identify the sender is considered to be an inappropriate use of email.
- not 'rebroadcasting', i.e., forwarding email that is deemed confidential by the sender to third parties
not posting materials that contain virus hoaxes or spam
not sending email in such a way that disrupts normal email service
not sending materials that are fraudulent, defamatory, harassing or of a threatening nature
not unlawfully soliciting or exchanging copies of copy-righted material by email.
Users who violate these principles will be subject
to disciplinary action as outlined in the Disciplinary Procedures.
Users unsure of whether their intended use of the university's
information technology violates these principles should consult with
the Office of the Director of Information Technology.
III. Procedures for Dealing with Infractions to the Policy Governing the Use of Information Technology
- It is the responsibility of managers to make sure their
employees are aware of the Policy Governing the Use of Information
- Managers are responsible for implementing this policy in
their areas. Information Technology Services will provide expertise and
advice as required.
- Information Technology Services are responsible for
initiating disciplinary procedures for policy violations with respect
to the university's network and central systems.
- When it appears that a user is not fully aware of the policy,
it is recommended that the appropriate section of the policy should be
brought to their attention by either their manager or Information
- In the process of investigating possible violations,
Information Technology Services may temporarily suspend access to
In extreme cases of abuse or if major damage has occurred, the disciplinary process will be accelerated.
Offenses, which are alleged violations of criminal and/or civil law or the Student Code of Conduct and Discipline,
may result in immediate loss of all privileges and will be reported to
the appropriate university and law enforcement agencies with the
potential of legal or disciplinary procedures to initiate under said
Violations can result in any or all of the following disciplinary consequences:
- A warning to cease the behaviour
- restriction in access to the facilities or a complete
suspension of access to the computing facilities, particularly in
continued violation cases
any or all discipline delineated under the WLU Student Code of Conduct and Discipline
liability under civil law
conviction under criminal law.
Academic & Related Dates 2005/2006