Information technology policies and procedures

Information Technology is a critical component of the Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering experience.

The information technology infrastructure has been designed to provide for the continuous change and adaptations of technology required by the curricular and business needs of the 21st century. The information technology utilized by the Olin community is a very important asset of the institution. Its use by all members of the college community is governed by this policy and other policies of the college as well as a variety of laws concerned with intellectual property, privacy, confidentiality and theft.

This policy covers any Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering information technology and computing facility regardless of its physical location. It includes but is not necessarily limited to any computer, data/programs stored on the college’s computing systems, data/programs stored on magnetic tape, floppy disk, CD ROM or other storage media that is owned and maintained by the college or a server or network provided or supported by the college.

Users are requested to report any weaknesses in the college’s computer security that they may discover.

Any discovered incidents of possible misuse or violation of this agreement shall be reported to the CIO (Chief Information Officer) at 781.292.2431 or by sending an electronic letter to

Users shall not attempt to access any data or programs contained on the college’s systems for which they do not have authorization.

Users shall not divulge “Dialup” or “Dialback” modem phone numbers to anyone outside of the Olin community.

Users shall not share their college Information Technology account(s) or account passwords with anyone. This includes providing access via a host entry, making copies of system configuration files (e.g., /etc/passwd) or other means of sharing.

Users shall not make copies of copyrighted software, except as permitted by law or by the owner of the copyright. Users are encouraged to contact the Information Technology Department with any licensing or software copyright questions or concerns.

Material such as information, data, text, software, music, sound, photographs, graphics, video, messages and other material that can be displayed or transmitted by email or posted on a website may often be protected by copyright. All such materials that are displayed, transmitted or otherwise used or distributed on the college’s website or servers may be copyright protected and users may not display or transmit any such material without the consent of the copyright owner.

User agrees that the college has a royalty-free license to edit and display such material on its facilities to prevent exposure to copyright infringement.

User agrees that the college may edit or remove any material displayed or transmitted on its facilities or may require users to do so at the request of the appropriate college authority so that the college may take appropriate action to protect itself in the event that any user disobeys the rules of conduct. However, the college is not required to do so in order to prevent users or third parties from obligating the college to screen or edit content that they dislike.

Users shall not engage in any activity with the intent to harass other users, degrade the performance of the system(s), deprive an authorized college user access to college resources, obtain extra resources beyond those allocated, circumvent college computer security measures, or gain unauthorized access to a college system.

Communication facilities such as Email or Netnews may not be used to transmit obscene, abusive or threatening language or to engage in any fraudulent or other illegal act.

Users shall not deliberately download, install or run security programs or utilities, such as password-cracking programs, that reveal weaknesses in the security of the college’s information technology system unless specifically directed in writing to do so by the Chief Information Officer or authorized designee.

Commercial use of college information technology systems for non-college related purposes is prohibited. Only those exceptions specifically authorized under college conflict-of-interest, outside employment and other related policies are permitted. In all cases of appropriately approved exceptions, the individuals need to work with Information Technology to detail the requirements prior to the use of the systems.

The college does not have any duty to provide the Services and is relieved of all responsibility in the event of interruption in or failure to provide the services and the college is not responsible for safety or merchantability of any items sold or services provided by these Services.

Any links to other sites or advertisements that appear on any of the college’s or college users’ web pages are not affiliated with the college and the college is not responsible for the content or practices of such advertisements on other sites.

Users should not expect that files stored on college information technology systems will always be private. Electronic messages and files stored on college information technology systems shall be treated like other college premises that are temporarily assigned for individual use. Administrators may review files and messages in an effort to maintain system integrity and in an effort to insure that users are acting responsibly. Moreover, college officials will cooperate with law enforcement officials who are properly authorized to search college computers and computer systems.

While the college makes all reasonable efforts to ensure the integrity of its information technology system, the college makes no warranties of any kind, either expressed or implied as to the computers, computer systems, Internet access or any other information technology resources it provides. All users accept the use of services at their sole risk and as is. The college shall not be responsible for any damages users suffer, including but not limited to loss of data resulting from delays or interruptions in service. The college shall not be responsible for the accuracy, nature or quality of information gathered through college diskettes, hard drives or servers; nor for the accuracy, nature or quality of information gathered through college-provided Internet access. The college shall not be responsible for personal property used to access college computers or networks or for college-provided Internet access. The college shall not be responsible for unauthorized financial obligations resulting from technical college-provided access to the Internet.

The college reserves the right to modify, discontinue or interrupt the Services (with respect to any or all users), may impose limits on the amount of disk space for users’ files, may modify any content in connection with the Services and may take any of the foregoing actions without notice. The college has no obligation to maintain the confidentiality of users’ information that it obtains through the use of the Services and the college has the right to use such information.

User agrees to indemnify and hold the college harmless for any losses the college may suffer in connection with such user’s use or misuse of the Services or violation of the user agreement. Any possible liability is limited to direct and actual losses and in no event is the college liable for any lost profits, consequential damages or punitive damages, even if a claim is based on breach of contract or negligence.

Noncompliance with this policy and/or any specific directive of a college Information Technology staff member may be reported to the employee user’s supervisor or to the Dean of Student Affairs if the user is a student. The violation may also be reported to the Executive Committee of the college. Sanctions may range from loss of some or all access to information technology privileges to separation from the college. Violators may also face civil or criminal penalties.

General security policies and guidelines

All users are expected to familiarize themselves with, understand and follow all college security policies, guidelines and restrictions. In addition, users are expected to report any violations of or weaknesses in the college’s computer security that they may discover. Computer security guide- lines and precautions are updated regularly and made available electronically via the Information Technology Department’s website at

Personal web page publishing guidelines

Students are responsible for the content they publish and are required to abide by college policies regarding the appropriate use of copyrighted materials, information and computing resources. Students are expected to observe safe computing standards and make every effort to ensure that all web pages and/or custom programming has been tested and is protected against known vulnerabilities. Any discovered vulnerabilities will lead to the site being disabled until said vulnerabilities have been addressed.

The college recognizes the need for individual departments and organizations to have a web presence. In consideration of the overall college mission and integrity of message, all institutional web pages (e.g., departments, committees, Co-Curricular groups) must be reviewed by the Communications Office prior to initial posting.

If linkage from the main Olin website is requested, then pages that are linked require review by the Communications Office.

Content on personal web pages must be responsible and consistent with the mission and core values of the college.

Advertising is not permitted on any pages due to the non-profit status of the college.

Web pages may link to commercial sites only when the links do not imply college endorsement of the product or service and when the purpose of the link is consistent with the college’s mission.

Personal home pages must include the name and the email address of the person responsible for the content of the pages.

The page is required to contain a link to the main Olin College website.

All pages are required to contain the following disclaimer: “The content of this page is the responsibility of the author and has not been reviewed or approved by Olin College.”

The content of all pages must respect intellectual property rights. Permission must be obtained before using copy-righted material.

To hold the copyright for the information published on the web, include: “Copyright ©”; the year, name and any applicable department or office.

Every effort should be made to keep the information free of typographical and grammatical errors, as well as to maintain the accuracy and timeliness of the content.

Intentional misrepresentation, racial or sexual harassment, profane or obscene language, sexually explicit material including nudity, the depiction or description of anything that is illegal and links to other sites that describe or advocate anything that is illegal are prohibited. All pages and their respective contents are subject to the existing local, state and federal laws.

CVentSM event management software guidelines

Olin College uses CVentSM as its primary event management system. This web-based system allows project teams to work and collaborate on events. Event project teams at Olin College will frequently include both Olin and non-Olin team members. As such, standard guidelines are required so that all team members operate on the same standards in terms of privacy of data and use of the system and the associated information. Users of the CVent system agree to the following:

  • To respect the privacy of all members of Olin’s community: faculty, staff, students and any other constituent group (e.g. alumni, parents, donors, etc.);
  • To not use the system or the data contained therein for personal and/or fraudulent use, or to share it without explicit permission from the appropriate college authorities;
  • To not engage in any activity with the intent to harass other users or members of Olin constituent groups; degrade the performance of the system; deprive an authorized user access to college resources; obtain extra resources beyond those allocated; circumvent college computer security measures, or gain unauthorized access to the college system;
  • To not use the system to transmit obscene, abusive or threatening language or to engage in any fraudulent or other illegal act(s).