Computer & Internet Use Regulations

Acceptable Use Policy

To facilitate achieving a quality education for its students, it is the policy of the Hinds Community College to provide all students and employees with opportunities to access a variety of technological resources. A large and varied technological environment requires that technology use by employees and students be legal, ethical, and safe. Technology use must be consistent with the educational vision, mission, and goals of Hinds Community College.

  1. Ownership of Technology Resources and Data – All technology resources, including network and Internet resources, e-mail systems, and computers or other access devices owned, leased, donated, or maintained by Hinds Community College are the sole property of the Hinds Community College. Hinds Community College personnel may, at any time and without prior notice, access, search, examine, inspect, collect, or retrieve information of any kind from the college’s technology resources, including computer or related equipment, files, and data, to determine if a user is in violation of any of the Board’s policies, rules, and regulations regarding access to and use of technology resources, for or in connection with any other matter or reason related to the safe and efficient operation or administration of the school system, or for any other reason not prohibited by law. Users of school system technology resources have no personal right of privacy or confidentiality with respect to the use or content of such resources
  2. GLBA, the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act: The GLBA requires financial institutions – companies that offer consumers financial products or services like loans, financial or investment advice, or insurance – to explain their information-sharing practices to their customers and to safeguard sensitive data.
  3. NIST, National Institute of Standards and Technology: NIST compliance is complying with the requirements of one or more NIST standards. NIST guidance provides the set of standards for recommended security controls for information systems at federal agencies. In many cases, complying with NIST guidelines and recommendations will help federal agencies ensure compliance with other regulations, such as HIPAA, FISMA, or SOX.
  4. Copyright Law: It is the obligation and intent of Hinds Community College to comply with the copyright laws of the United States. Hinds Community College employees and students shall use technology resources in accordance with Board policies and procedures, as well as local, state, and federal laws and guidelines governing the use of technology and its component parts.
  5. Electronic Mail: Hinds Community College provides access to electronic mail for students as requested by staff for special projects and for employees whose normal work activity requires access. That access is intended to support only educational, instructional, extracurricular, or normal administrative activity.
    1. Board policies and procedures shall apply to the use of electronic mail. Hinds Community College cannot guarantee the privacy, security, or confidentiality of any information sent or received via electronic mail. Hinds Community College will use a filtering device to screen email for spam and inappropriate content. Contents of electronic mail cannot be considered private. All contents of electronic mail are the property of the Hinds Community College.
    2. To ensure the safety and security of students when using electronic mail, locally housed chat rooms (others are prohibited), and other forms of direct communication, only Hinds Community College approved sources will be used. All other communicative sources will be blocked.
  6. The Internet: The intent of the Hinds Community College is to provide access to resources available via the Internet with the understanding that faculty, staff, and students will access and use only information that is appropriate, beneficial, and/or required for his/her various curricular or extracurricular activities or staff duties. Staff will screen resources that will be used in the classroom for content prior to their introduction. Board policies and procedures shall apply to the use of the Internet.
    1. Internet access is provided to allow students, faculty, and staff to conduct research. Users will gain access to the Internet by agreeing to conduct themselves in a considerate and responsible manner.
    2. Hinds Community College provides technology protection measures that include blocking or filtering Internet access to visual depictions and text that are obscene, pornographic, or harmful to minors. These measures cannot be considered 100% effective. Staff must preview required web sites and observe students using the Internet. Sites that are deemed inappropriate or a disruption of the learning atmosphere should be reported to the ISO (Information Security Officer) or Executive Director of Technology (EDOT). Staff may also request that sites be opened for periods of research.
    3. Network users are prohibited from accessing external networks or alternate Internet service providers within the Hinds Community College internal network unless expressly authorized by the President or President’s designee and properly protected by a firewall, other appropriate security device(s), and appropriate filtering software.
    4. All college rules and guidelines for appropriate technology use shall apply to use of the Internet. Because communications on the Internet are often public in nature, all users must engage in appropriate and responsible communications with particular regard to avoiding disruption of the educational environment.
    5. Student posting of personal information of any kind about themselves, or others is prohibited. Personal information includes home and/or school addresses, work addresses, home and/or school phone numbers, full names, social security numbers, etc.
    6. Hinds Community College cannot guarantee the privacy, security, or confidentiality of any information sent or received via the Internet.
  7. College, Department, and School-Sponsored Activity Websites: Because any college websites can be globally available and represent the community at large, the designated college webmaster will review all websites and/or new features and links before adding them to the system web server. Review includes coordination with and approval of the Department Head, Executive Leadership Team Member, or college President. The webmaster may reject all or part of proposed home pages and/or new features and links for technical reasons.
    1. The legal and ethical practices and responsibilities of appropriate use of technology resources be taught to all students and employees in the system (i.e. during lab orientation, network orientation, faculty meetings, etc.).
    2. Individuals are expected to report any violations of this policy and/or problems with the security of any technology resources to the Information Security Officer (ISO) and/or Executive Director of Technology (EDOT).
    3. All Hinds Community College technology resources, regardless of purchase date, location, or fund sources (including donations), are subject to this policy.
    4. Students who misuse the college’s technology will be subject to normal disciplinary procedures in accordance with student code of conduct.
    5. Employees who misuse the college’s technology may be denied computer usage, and/or may be subject to monetary charges, reprimands, and/or loss of employment.
    6. All students and employees will be required to sign that they have read and agree with the acceptable use policy every school year.
    7. Violation of civil and/or criminal law relating to technology and its use will result in the notification of law enforcement officials.

BYOD (Bring Your Own Device)- Personally owned devices

Hinds Community College will allow students to use privately owned electronic devices (including laptops, iPads, cell phones, etc.) to access the HCC wireless network. This wireless access provided to the devices is designed to enhance the student’s educational experience and outcomes. Connecting to the HCC network with personal devices is a privilege, not a right, and it is not a requirement for students. Permission to bring and use privately owned devices is contingent upon adherence to this Agreement.

    • Student devices must only access the Internet via the HCC wireless network. Bypassing or attempting to bypass this network through proxies, cellular network cards, tethering, or other means is not allowed
    • Technical support will not be provided for personal devices. The student must take full responsibility for setting up and maintaining the device. Students are responsible for ensuring their mobile learning device has virus protection and free of any viruses.
    • Personal devices may not be used to record, transmit or post photographs, images, or video of a person or persons on campus during school activities and/or during school hours unless assigned by the teacher as stated by this plan.
    • The school or district assumes no responsibility for lost, stolen, or damaged student devices.
    • The school’s network filters will be applied to personal devices connected to HCC’s network and any attempt to bypass the network filter is prohibited.
    • Free wireless access will be provided by HCC while at school. The college is not responsible for personal charges for accessing other wireless connections or other data charges.
    • HCC takes no responsibility for stolen, lost or damaged devices, including lost or corrupted data on those devices. While school employees will help students identify how to keep their possessions secure, students will have the final responsibility for securing their personal devices and data.

BYOD Applications & Data

In situations where there is a strong business case to do so, Hinds employees may receive Hinds-related data to their personal mobile devices. In these cases, the employee understands that certain security risks exist and must be mitigated through proper controls and security measures. Accordingly, the Hinds may block certain applications from devices to protect Hinds and Hinds customer information from unauthorized access.
While applications (Apps) purchased on an employee’s personal device are owned by the employee, the Hinds may prohibit certain applications per its Information Security Program and Acceptable Use Policy.
Installing Hinds applications on devices that have been rooted or “jailbroken” is strictly prohibited.

BYOD Exit Procedures

Employee-owned devices are subject to the policies and guidelines within the Hinds’ Information Security Program. Any Hinds or Hinds-customer information on the device must be removed, by the Hinds’ Information Technology department, upon termination.Employees should be aware that the Hinds retains the right to remotely remove or wipe any device that potentially contains customer data; this includes employee-owned devices which could potentially contain confidential Hinds and/or Hinds-customer information.

It should be noted that executing the wipe command on any Apple® device will remove both personal (photos, contacts, music, etc.) and Hinds-related data. Employees should plan for a potential reset of the device by maintaining a backup of any personal information stored on the device.

The user is required to notify IT management immediately of lost or stolen devices, or devices that have been replaced due to routine upgrades or warranty replacements. The user will also notify IT management of known or suspected security related issues affecting the device.