Stephen F. Austin State University

Please read and accept our Use of Electronic Information Resources, Wireless Networking, and Digital Millennium Copyright Act Policies

16.32 Use of Electronic Information Resources

Use of Electronic Information Resources

Original Implementation: July 25, 2002 Last Revision: July 19, 2011


Stephen F. Austin State University (SFA) supports the responsible use of its electronic information resources. SFA's information resources include, but are not limited to, computers, servers, wired and wireless networks, computer-attached devices, network-attached devices, voice systems, cable systems and computer applications. The use of information resources is for SFA academic activities, research and public service. Access to SFA's information resources is, however, a privilege. All users of information resources should act responsibly to maintain the integrity of these resources. Furthermore, all users shall abide by all existing SFA codes of conduct as well as local, state and federal statutes. SFA reserves the right to limit, restrict or extend privileges and access to its resources.


• It is the responsibility of all individuals using SFA's information resources to protect the privacy of their account(s). Personal account information should not be released to friends, relatives, roommates, etc. Users are responsible for the security of their passwords. Passwords should be changed on a regular basis.
• All individuals using SFA information resources are prohibited from using a computer account for which they are not authorized, or obtaining a password for a computer account not assigned to them.
• The owner or designated assignee of a computer that is attached to the SFA network is responsible for both the security of the computer system and for any intentional or unintentional activities from or to the network connections. Owners or designated assignees are responsible for all network activity originating from their equipment, regardless of who generates it.
• Any person operating a network-intensive application or a defective computer that causes network overload shall be notified, and steps shall be taken to protect other users and the overall SFA network. This may include disconnecting the defective computer system from the network until the problem is resolved. If the condition is an imminent hazard to the SFA network or disrupts the activities of others, the defective computer system or the subnet to which it is attached may be disabled without notice. The operator of the defective computer system shall be expected to follow instructions from networking staff for securing the machine.
• Any person using e-mail should not send unnecessary e-mails, attachments, or messages locally or over the network.
• The content of any files or services made available to others over the network is the sole responsibility of the person with ownership of and/or administrative authority over the computer providing the service. It is this person's responsibility to be aware of all applicable federal and state laws, as well as SFA policies. This person shall be liable for any violations of these laws and policies.
• It is the responsibility of every person using SFA's information resources to refrain from engaging in any act that may seriously compromise, damage, or disrupt the operation of computers, terminals, peripherals, or networks. This includes, but is not limited to, tampering with components of a local area network (LAN) or the backbone, blocking communication lines, interfering with the operational readiness of a computer, creating/operating unsanctioned servers or personal Web (NAT, DHCP or BOOTP servers included) or File Transfer Protocol (FTP) sites, or delivering unsanctioned streaming audio, video, high bandwidth gaming, or high bandwidth video conferencing. Users should refrain from using an IP address not specifically assigned to them and should not attempt to create unauthorized network connections or unauthorized extensions, or re-transmitting any computer or network services.
• All email messages of a personal nature sent by faculty, staff, and retirees using an SFA email address must contain the following disclaimer: ¡§The views and opinions expressed in this message are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Stephen F. Austin State University, its Board of Regents, or the State of Texas.
• All breaches of system security shall be reported immediately to networking personnel.


Examples of infractions include, but are not limited to:

• Circumventing or attempting to circumvent data protection schemes or exploiting security loopholes.
• Running programs that attempt to identify passwords, weaknesses in the SFA system, or other security codes.
• Attempting to monitor or tamper with another user's data communications or network traffic, or reading, copying, changing, or deleting another user's files or software without the explicit agreement of the owner.
• Knowingly running or installing on any computer system or network, or giving to another user, a program intended to damage or to place an excessive load on a computer system or network. This includes, but is not limited to, programs known as computer viruses, Trojan horses and worms.
• Using SFA computer resources for private business or commercial activities (except where such activities are otherwise permitted or authorized), fundraising or advertising on behalf of non-SFA organizations, reselling of SFA computer resources and using SFA's name in an unauthorized manner.
• Engaging in unlawful communications, including threats of violence, obscenity, child pornography and harassing communications. • Attempting to alter any SFA computing or networking components (including, but not limited to, switches, routers and data/phone/cable TV wiring) without authorization or beyond one's level of authorization.
• Failing to comply with requests from appropriate SFA officials to discontinue activities that threaten the operation or integrity of computers, systems, networks, or otherwise violate this policy.


Misuse of computing, networking, or information resources may result in the loss of computing privileges, as well as other disciplinary action.


When demand for computing resources exceeds available capacity, priorities for their use shall be enforced. The priorities for use of computing resources are:
• Highest: Uses that directly support the educational, research and service missions of SFA.
• Medium: Uses that indirectly benefit the education, research and service missions of SFA, as well as reasonable and limited personal communications.
• Lowest: Recreational use, including game playing and general browsing.
• Forbidden: Uses listed in the Infractions section of this policy, as well as breaches of the Responsibilities section not specifically listed under the Infractions section.

SFA may enforce these priorities by restricting or limiting usages in circumstances where their demand and limitations of capacity impact or threaten usages of higher priority.


All individuals with access to SFA computing resources are responsible for their appropriate use. Such use constitutes an agreement to comply with applicable SFA policies and regulations, with applicable city, state, and federal laws and regulations, and with applicable policies of the affiliated networks and systems.

Each person requesting service from an SFA Telecommunications and Networking technician for equipment owned by a person or entity other than SFA must acknowledge and accept the following liability release before the technician provides the requested service:

By accepting technical support from the Telecommunications and Networking staff, I expressly waive all claims against SFA and its agents for any damages to my computer system or data that are incidental to the technical support rendered by Telecommunications and Networking. I understand that the technical support I receive from Telecommunications and Networking may void manufacturer warranties and I understand that Telecommunications and Networking offers no verbal or written warranty, either expressed or implied, regarding the success of this technical support. I understand that I have the right not to accept support from Telecommunications and Networking staff and to seek technical assistance elsewhere.

Cross Reference: None

Responsible for Implementation: Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs

Contact for Revision: Director of Information Technology Services

Forms: None

Board Committee Assignment: Academic and Student Affairs


14.11 Wireless Networking

Wireless Networking

Original Implementation: February 3, 2005 Last Revision: April 17, 2012


Stephen F. Austin State University’s (SFA’s) wireless local area network (LAN) enables wireless computing and provides reliable and secure network services in many locations on campus. It is a complementary system to the campus wired network.


This policy applies to all uses of wireless LAN technologies at all physical locations of SFA, both inside buildings and in outdoor areas. It does not apply to cellular wireless technology. All SFA wireless LAN policies shall comply with university, federal, state, and local laws and regulations.


Information Technology Services is responsible for implementing wireless LAN technology in compliance with campus network standards and also for resolving frequency interference issues. These responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

• being the primary provider of design, specification, installation, operation, maintenance, and management services for all wireless access points;
• managing all SFA-owned wireless equipment;
• servicing wireless access points, i.e., the service demarcation points, and the wired network to which they are attached; and
• identifying and authenticating all users connecting to the wireless LAN.

Departments and individual students are responsible for all costs associated with the purchase of wireless network devices. Individuals may not install or operate wireless access points on university-owned property, including residence halls and apartments.


All SFA faculty, staff, and students are required to have a valid user identification and password to use the wireless LAN. Any employee at the university can sponsor a guest on the wireless network using the self-service application in mySFA.


All wireless access points and wireless client adapters shall use a Service Set Identification provided by Information Technology Services to access any wireless LAN provided by SFA. SFA shall encrypt all data.


SFA has adopted the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc., standards for wireless networking for the wireless LAN. Only the Internet Protocol standard shall be supported on the wireless LAN.

Sanctions for Policy Violations

Applicable university discipline and/or discharge policies will be followed in imposing sanctions related to a violation of this policy, including limiting a user’s access. In the event of an imposed restriction or termination of access to some or all university computers and systems, a user enrolled in courses or involved in computer-related work activities may be required to use alternative facilities. If such facilities are unavailable, the user bears the responsibility for failure to complete requirements for course work and/or job responsibilities.

Cross Reference: Computer & Network Security (14.2); Use of Electronic Information Resources (16.32); Computing Software Copyright (9.1); Digital Millennium Copyright (9.3); Texas Information Resources Management Act; Tex. Gov’t Code § 2054; 1 Tex. Admin. Code §§ 202.70-.78; Tex. Penal Code Ch. 33.

Responsible for Implementation: Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs

Contact for Revision: Director of Information Technology Services

Forms: None

Board Committee Assignment: Academic and Student Affairs


9.3 Digital Millennium Copyright

Digital Millennium Copyright

Original Implementation: July 27, 1999 Last Revision: April 19, 2011

1. Summary The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) creates a liability limitation for Internet service providers (ISP) for certain copyright infringements created on-line. The university serves as an ISP for faculty, staff, and students. The DMCA establishes procedures whereby, upon receipt of proper complaints, the university will block access to or take down allegedly infringing material and notify the Web page owner of the complaint. The alleged infringer may issue a properly executed counter-notice, upon receipt of which, the university shall re-post the material in 10-14 days (unless there is court action), and immediately forward such counter-notice to the original complainant. Repeat infringers will be subject to termination of Internet service by the university. It is the policy of the university to comply with these safe haven procedures created by the DMCA.

2. Registered Agent The university general counsel shall be designated as the registered agent for receipt of DMCA complaints. The complaint resolution team may include the following positions: manager of systems, assistant systems manager, library director, associate library director for information service, university webmaster, director of student rights and responsibilities, director of student activities, and general counsel. Upon receipt of a DMCA complaint, relevant team members shall be responsible for assessing the complaint and determining the exact location of the alleged infringing material. Assessing the complaint would include a determination of whether the complaint contains all necessary elements, and whether the complaint involves the university in its role as an ISP or the university (and its employees) acting as a content provider. If the complaint is deficient, a notice of deficiency shall be returned to the complainant with a courtesy copy forwarded to the alleged infringer. No complaint will be deemed official, requiring take down procedures, unless all elements of a proper complaint are included.

3. Official Complaints The following elements are required for DMCA complaints:
1. Must be signed or contain a digital signature by the owner of the copyright or the authorized agent.
2. Description of works claimed to be infringed.
3. Description of location for alleged infringing works.
4. Sufficient information to contact the complainer.
5. Statement of good faith belief that the use is not authorized by the owner/agent.
6. Statement that the information in the notice is accurate and, under penalty of perjury, the complainer is authorized to act on behalf of the owner.
4. University as Content Provider If a determination is made that the DMCA complaint involves the university as a content provider and not an ISP, then careful consideration will be given to fair use exemptions under the copyright act. Appropriate university officials will be notified to handle the matter in a way similar to the way any claim of copyright infringement is handled.
5. Faculty/Graduate Students The DMCA specifically defines when faculty or graduate students alleged infringement on-line is or is not attributable to the institution as a content provider. Infringing activities shall not be attributed to the institution if:
1. Such faculty members’ or graduate students’ infringing activities do not involve the provision of on-line access to instructional materials that are or were required or recommended, within the preceding three-year period, for a course taught at the institution by such faculty member or graduate student;
2. The institution has not, within the preceding three-year period, received more than two official DMCA complaints about the alleged infringer; and
3. The institution provides to all users of its system or network informational or network informational materials that accurately describe, and promote compliance with, the laws of the U.S. relating to copyright. See university policy, Copyrighted Works Reproduction (9.2).
6. Take Down Procedures If the university is acting as an ISP, take down procedures will be automatically initiated once an official complaint is received. The complaint resolution team will notify the person responsible for the server to specifically locate the alleged infringing materials. The dean or director for the area involved will also be immediately notified of the official complaint. The dean or director shall immediately confer with the alleged infringer and attempt the secure a voluntary take down of the alleged infringing material. Such voluntary take down must be confirmed by the dean or director. If these procedures cannot be completed within a reasonably quick time or voluntary take down cannot be secured, then the dean or director shall immediately coordinate with the person responsible for the server to take down the alleged infringing materials. The general counsel should be notified when the alleged infringing materials have been removed.
7. Counter-Notices If the alleged infringer believes the official complaint is in error or that the complainant is not the official copyright holder or agent, he or she can submit a counter-notice containing the following elements:
1. Must contain a physical or electronic signature of the alleged infringer;
2. Identification of the removed material and the location at which it appeared;
3. A statement under penalty of perjury that the alleged infringer has a good faith belief that the material was removed because of mistake or misidentification; and
4. The alleged infringer’s name, address, telephone number, consent to the jurisdiction of the federal court in which their address is located, and that they will accept service of process from the official complainant.
Upon receipt of the counter-notice, the university shall immediately forward it to the official complainant with an explanation that the university shall restore access to the materials at issue within 10-14 days, unless notice is received that court action is pending.
8. Repeat Infringers The university may terminate Internet service to repeat infringers who receive more than two complaints in a three-year period. Repeat infringement shall constitute misuse of university computers and network systems under university policy, Computer and Network Security (14.2). Sanctions procedures under that policy will be followed.

Cross Reference: Digital Millennium Copyright Act, Pub. L. No. 105-304, 112 Stat. 2860 (1998); Copyrighted Works Reproduction (9.2); Computer and Network Security (14.2)

Responsible for Implementation: General Counsel

Contact for Revision: General Counsel

Forms: None

Board Committee Assignment: Academic and Student Affairs

If you have any questions, please contact the help desk at (936) 468-4357