ITS New Employee Guide

Highlights of IT Policies & Procedures

The complete policies and procedures can be found at:

Hamilton College offers a wide array of computing, networking, and telecommunications resources and services to members of the college community. These services are in place to facilitate teaching and learning, research, and administrative activities and to further Hamilton's mission.

Access to Electronic Resources

Access to electronic resources for employees, students, spouses/partners, and alumni is enabled through a username and password. ITS provides users with a username and password along with instructions on how to change the password.

  • Passwords should be known only to the person responsible for the account and username.
  • Non-Faculty employee access to all resources is removed at the end of business on the last date of employment.  Student access to all resources is removed three months after withdrawal or graduation.  Faculty access to all resources is removed at the end of business three months after the last date of employment.  Faculty and non-Faculty employees who meet the requirements for retirement may retain access to their email account for as long as they desire.
  • Extension of access privileges may be requested.
  • Users agree, in consideration of access to the College's computing, networking and media services, to indemnify, defend, and hold harmless the College for any suits, claims, losses, expenses or damages, including, but not limited to, the user's access to or use of the College's computing, networking, and media services and facilities.

Legal and Ethical Responsibilities

Under no circumstance may anyone use College IT resources for:

  • profit-making activities
  • in ways that are illegal (e.g. copyright violations)
  • that threaten the College's tax-exempt or other status
  • to provide access to the Internet for anyone not formally affiliated with the College
  • Interfere with reasonable use by other members of the College community. Of particular note is the responsibility of each individual for complying with copyright laws. It is the responsibility of each person using college resources, including the network, to do so in an ethical and legal manner.

Uses of network that are central to the academic/administrative mission of the College will receive higher priority during times when classes are in session, offices are open, and in the evenings when preparation takes place. Hamilton does not monitor the content of traffic on the network.

The College reverses the rights to disconnect any user from the network whose activity causes an adverse effect on the network or on any other user or who engages in improper computing activities.

Security and Privacy

  • Hamilton College requires all computers connected to the network to have up-to-date virus protection. All computers running the Microsoft Windows operating system or Apple operating system and connected to the Hamilton College network must be kept up-to-date with critical service updates from Microsoft or Apple.
  • Each employee is responsible for taking reasonable safety precautions in regard to Hamilton-owned computer equipment.
    • Employees will be held responsible for damage to such equipment arising out of their negligence or intentional misconduct.
    • Backups and protection of files stored on desktop equipment are the responsibility of the user of that equipment.
  • Hamilton takes reasonable steps to protect users from unauthorized entry into their accounts or files, whether by other users or by system administrators, except in instances where a system related problem requires such entry.
  • It is the policy of the College to disclose neither the contents of electronic mail and data files stored in or transmitted via the College Central Computer Systems nor the activities of individuals on the campus network to other individuals within or outside the College community except when required to do so by law, other legal mandate, during legal investigations (in accordance with College policies) or by permission of the owner.  In addition, the College assumes ownership of the employee’s account(s) from the time access is terminated until the account(s) is/are deleted.  If it is necessary to ensure business continuity, designated personnel may be granted access to the account(s) during this period.

Electronic Communication

Hamilton strongly recommends that email not be used for confidential communication.

  • Email is now considered a formal written record that carries the same legal weight as a formal memorandum.
  • Users of email should remember that email messages become the possession of the receiver and can be easily duplicated and redistributed by recipients.
  • College policy prohibits certain types of email including email that may be perceived as harassment, political campaigning, chain letters, or commercial solicitation.

As a service to the Hamilton College community, several e-mail-based mass mailing lists have been created. These are designed to facilitate the timely and cost-effective distribution of information to the campus community. The mass mailing lists are intended for: announcement of campus events and deadlines; changes in campus policies, procedures, organizations, or departments; notification of the availability of services and/or facilities.

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