Internet Usage Policy
Title: Bandwidth Usage Policy
Audience: The material of this policy applies to all College of Medicine network users, including staff and students.
The College of Medicine is committed to pursuing practically sound internet usage policy in order to meet the growing bandwidth (network traffic) requirements of the entire College community. Bandwidth is amongst the expensive expenditures of the college and needs to be effectively and efficiently used by students and staff equitably. The intention of this policy is to manage bandwidth use proactively in order to avoid the potential for degradation of internet performance.
It should be noted that the internet at College of Medicine is provided free primarily for academic purposes.
It should also be noted that internet usage is not a right but a privilege which may be taken away.
The College reserves the right to monitor the network and all attached computers to ensure compliance bandwidth policy.
Bandwidth usage of all computers is monitored continually on the College’s firewall using network monitoring tools.
The bandwidth monitoring apply to any traffic to or from the Internet that passes through the College’s external link. This excludes traffic to or from computers on the College of Medicines intranet
The following actions are not allowed:
2.1 Use of peer-to-peer software, downloading music, files not for academic purpose. This applies to private computers.
2.2 COM facilities, including hardware, software, and networks, are intended exclusively for educational and research purposes. Any commercial use of COM facilities is strictly prohibited.
2.3 Attempting to modify or remove computer, networking equipment, cables , software or peripherals without proper authorization.
2.4 Sending fraudulent computer mail or breaking into another user’s electronic mailbox.
2.5 Use of another user’s account or loaning account privileges to others is prohibited and will result in loss of your privileges with the COM. You are further required to notify the COM ICT Staff immediately of any unauthorized access to your account by sending mail to email@example.com or by reporting to a member of the COM ICT Staff.
2.6 Making available through your computer account any materials or pointers/links to materials on other systems that can or will discredit the medical profession, the University of Malawi or the College of Medicine.
If any network user is established to take action to bypass or otherwise contravene the motive of this policy, then the disciplinary process quoted below will apply.
Students, who have genuine academic reasons for wishing to violate this policy, should discuss their requirement with the IT Department before they have done so.
However, before approaching the IT Department they should first gain support for their request from relevant authorities. Such requests will normally be granted, provided that their impact on the use of the network by the College community as a whole does not compromise the network performance.
4. Disciplinary Process:
Abuse of computing privileges is subject to disciplinary action. If system administrators of the COM Computer Facility have strong evidence of misuse of computing resources, and if that evidence points to the computing activities or the computer files of an individual, they have the obligation to pursue any or all of the following steps to protect the bandwidth:
A tiered disciplinary approach is observed, with the severity of action escalating.
4.1 First Instance
The first violation of this policy will result in a written warning from the System Administrator including sending a copy to the registrar and dean of students. The System Administrator, however, may immediately suspend an account for severe violations of COM usage policy.
4.2 Second Instance
Disabling account from the network for 2 weeks.
Reconnection to be conditional upon verification of removal or absence of P2P software or absence of the violation.
4.3 Third Instance
Disabling accouint from the network for the remainder of the academic year.
A fine, which may be made proportional to the scale of the traffic
NOTE TO STUDENT USERS: Students whose accounts are suspended or removed should be aware that this may make completion of course work difficult or impossible. However, this will not be grounds for restoration of an account. All students must read and understand the policies in this document and understand that the consequences of their violation include loss of computing privileges which may seriously affect their ability to continue as students. Students may also be subject to disciplinary sanctions under the University’s Student Conduct Code.
5. Questions or Comments
Any questions of interpretation of or comments regarding this policy should be mailed electronically to: firstname.lastname@example.org
6. Publication and Review:
The contents of this policy is subject to periodic review by the stakeholders of the ICT Steering committee, and the definitive copy will be published at http://www.medcol.mw/ict/