Technology Appropriate Use Regulations


Oakland Community College's Technology Appropriate Use Regulations (TAUR) is a body of standards of behavior that is intended to promote the responsible use of electronic communications and to prevent the abuse of computers and network systems. The TAUR identifies uses of technology that are appropriate, inappropriate, or illegal. These regulations and standards of behavior apply to all faculty, students, staff and College-registered organizations.

All regulations are subordinate to the technology policies of the Oakland Community College Board of Trustees, attached at the end of this document.

Appropriate uses of technology are those which facilitate communication among those conducting College business, support the function of College systems, and otherwise further OCC's Mission, Goals and Vision.

Inappropriate uses of technology are those which violate the function of College business by harming or interfering with the work of others or by engaging in illegal acts. The TAUR makes it a violation "to recklessly or maliciously interfere with or damage, in violation of College rules, computer or network resources or computer data, files, or other information." The TAUR also makes it clear that "misappropriation of data or copyrighted materials, including computer software, may constitute theft."

Further definition of Appropriate and Inappropriate Use appears in OCC Board Policy 3.8.2 reprinted at the end of this document.

College owned or operated computing resources are for the use of faculty, students, staff and other authorized individuals. Individuals should exercise responsible, ethical behavior when using these facilities. The College does not attempt to articulate all required or proscribed behavior by its users. Therefore, each individual's judgment on appropriate conduct must be relied upon. The basic premise is that legitimate use of a computer or network does not extend to whatever an individual is capable of doing with it. Just because individuals are able to circumvent restrictions or security doesn't mean that they are allowed to do so.

The College has the right, but not the duty, to monitor any and all aspects of its network, including, but not limited to, monitoring sites individuals visit on the Internet, monitoring chat groups and newsgroups, reviewing material downloaded or uploaded by individuals, and reviewing email sent and received by individuals. All users should be aware that the IT System Administrators perform periodic security checks of the College network and attached components. These checks include password scanning, virus detection, file system/directory use and hardware and software inventory probes. OCC extends to its student, faculty, and staff a reasonable expectation of privacy in electronic communications. However, the privacy of electronic communications and documents cannot be guaranteed by the College. Users of the network give a limited waiver of any right to privacy in material created, stored, sent or received via the College's network; this limited waiver constitutes consent by the user to any and all such monitoring and security checks and measures as OCC, in its reasonable discretion, determines are appropriate to protect the network and its community of users.

Disclaimer of Liability
The College will not be responsible for any damages, direct or indirect, arising out of the use of its Internet, computing or telecommunication resources.


Alleged violations of the types below should be reported directly to the appropriate Dean or other responsible administrator or to the police if the situation is potentially serious or requires immediate attention. If the person responsible is not affiliated with the College or if it is not possible to identify the individual, the incident can still be reported. Save electronic copies of all correspondence for evidence.

Violations of these Regulations or the OCC Board Policy on Information Technologies will be subject to consequences consistent with Board Policy 3.8.2.E, “Violations”, and this Regulation. The College reserves the right to audit and/or suspend without notice the electronic communications of any user pending the results of an inquiry into a suspected violation of TAUR or the law. Users in suspected violation of TAUR may lose their right to access College electronic communications. Consequences of inappropriate use may include, but are not limited to: the immediate removal from online information systems of material that is believed to infringe TAUR or the law; reporting of suspected violations to appropriate law enforcement authorities; and action by the Dean or another responsible administrator within the College's disciplinary framework potentially resulting in discharge or dismissal from the College.

All of the activities listed as violations below are examples of prohibited conduct. However, the list is not comprehensive. Some of the conduct identified as violations of the TAUR is also illegal.



Interfering with Activities of Others
This can be any activity that disrupts a system and interferes with other people's ability to use that system. In some cases, consuming more than your "fair" share of resources can constitute interference. Some examples are:

Denial of service attacks will be treated as a direct intrusion to the College network, and offenders will be prosecuted by the College.

In recent years, chain mail hoaxes of various sorts have become widespread on the Internet. Some are virus warnings like "Good Times," "PenPal," and "Irina." Others are like the "Naughty Robot" that claims to have all your credit card numbers. They tell you to forward the "warning" to everyone you know. Most hoaxes start out as pranks but often live on for years, getting passed around by new people who have just joined the Internet community. Don't believe every warning you get via e-mail. You should not pass these warnings on unless you verify the authenticity. You should contact the OCC IT Call Center, or check out one of the many sites on the Internet that track hoaxes:

If you get chain e-mail from someone with an OCC e-mail address, you should report it. If you get chain e-mail from someone not affiliated with OCC, you can reply to the sender and let them know you are not happy about getting chain e-mail from them, or you can delete and ignore it.



Electronic communication that is repeated and unwanted may constitute harassment. In general, communication targeted at a specific individual with the intent to harass or threaten is a violation of OCC policy. If you receive unwanted e-mail or other form of communication, you may want to consider notifying the sender that it is unwanted. Many times a person will not realize that their communication is unwanted unless you tell them. If the sender continues to communicate after being placed on notice, or if you feel uncomfortable confronting the sender, the incident should be reported.


Everything listed under the “Illegal under State and Federal Laws” (at the end of the TAUR) is a violation of College policy. This is not a comprehensive list, but it contains the activities most frequently asked about.

Illegal Under State and Federal Law



3.8.2 Appropriate Use of Information Technology Resources

Information technology resources (computers, voice and data networks, electronic data and information) are provided by Oakland Community College to its faculty, administration, and students in support of the college mission. Users of the information technology resources will abide by applicable Federal and State laws and the college's regulations (Technology Appropriate Use Regulations) governing the use of these resources, and will use them in support of activities directly related to duties and assignments.

Initial Approval: 1/26/89 Public Act: Federal Copyright
Law Title 17, Paragraph 117
(revised 7/1/85).
Federal Computer Fraud
Abuse Act
Federal Electronic
Privacy Act.
Michigan Computer Law,
Section 174 of P.A. 328,
1931, as amended.
Revised: 04/21/03



  3.8.2   Appropriate Use of Information Technology Resources

Information technology resources (computers, voice and data networks, electronic data and information) are provided by Oakland Community College to its faculty, administration, and students in support of the college mission. This document outlines the appropriate use of college information technology resources. More detail may be found in the Technology Appropriate Use Regulations.


College employees may receive user accounts based on the requirements of their job. Students enrolling in courses which require user accounts are provided them for the terms enrolled in those courses.


Users of OCC's computer systems and electronic networks agree to abide by applicable Federal and State information technology laws as well as the college's standards of conduct. This shall include, but not be limited to, any copyright protection of programs or files.


Computer and network resources must be used in support of activities directly related to your duties or assignments at OCC. These activities include but are not limited to:

  1. completion of assigned job duties or class assignments
  2. relevant communication with colleagues at OCC and other institutions
  3. exchange of research data and papers
  4. authorized exchange of computer programs to support academic research, instruction, and administration, provided such exchange does not violate any copyright protection.

Any use of computer and network resources for activities outside the college mission is inappropriate. These activities include but are not limited to:

  1. unauthorized access to computer accounts or files
  2. development or use of programs designed to monitor or damage data files
  3. use of college resources to support the activities of any organization not so approved by the college administration
  4. use of college resources for personal consulting, programming, or other profit or not-for-profit activities
  5. use of electronic mail systems for personal attacks, offensive language, political or religious solicitations, or advertising for goods or services
  6. disclosure of passwords or other data which might allow unauthorized persons to gain access to computer accounts, files, or electronic mail.

Any user who perceives that college information technology resources are being used in violation of the standards outlined in this document should report the incident, in writing, to the appropriate Dean or other responsible administrator. If it is deemed necessary, Information Technologies will work with the OCC Human Resources and/or Public Safety Departments to investigate any misuse of computer resources. Any employee or student found to have violated college standards of conduct will be subject to disciplinary action up to and including discharge or dismissal from the college. Any suspected violation of State or Federal information technology laws will be reported to the appropriate legal authority for investigation.

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