Email Policy

CATEGORY:    Information Technology, Privacy, Information Access & Management
STATUS:       Approved

POLICY PURPOSE:

To define appropriate use of electronic mail at Truman State University.

APPLIES TO:

This policy applies to any individual or group with an email account extension of @truman.edu or xxx.truman.edu.


CONTENTS:

Acceptable Use
Privacy
Official Communication
Broadcast Messages
Email Account Ownership
Hosting Email Servers


POLICY STATEMENT:

Acceptable Use

Truman State University provides access to electronic mail [1] for use by students, faculty, staff, and others affiliated with Truman. The University encourages the appropriate use of email to further its mission and goals, and provides email for use when engaging in activities relating to instruction, research, management and administrative support.

Truman’s electronic mail system may not be used:

  • for commercial purposes,
  • for personal financial gain (including outside consulting work),
  • to distribute chain mail,
  • to communicate with elected officials on non-university business,
  • or to support outside organizations not otherwise authorized to use University facilities (with the exception outlined below regarding incidental personal use).

Truman’s electronic mail system may be used for:

  • incidental personal use provided that such use does not interfere with normal operations, does not generate incremental identifiable costs to Truman, does not imply the individual is speaking on behalf of the University, or does not negatively impact an individual’s job performance.

Privacy

The University supports a climate of trust and respect and does not ordinarily read, monitor, or screen electronic mail. However, complete confidentiality or privacy of email cannot be guaranteed due to the nature of the medium, the need for authorized staff to maintain email systems, and the University’s accountability as a public institution. The Provost or the Provost’s designee may authorize access to employee or student email in a number of circumstances including, but not limited to, situations involving the health or safety of people or property; possible violations of University and Board of Governors codes of conduct, regulations, or policies; possible violations of state or federal laws; subpoenas and court orders; other legal responsibilities or obligations of the University; or, in the case of an employee, the need to locate information required for University business.

Official Communication

Faculty and Staff Email – The University routinely uses email for both formal and informal communication (including emergency messages). Faculty and staff are required to utilize a University-provided account during their employment at the University, and all University business-related email must remain on a University-provided email account.  These addresses are used for University business and official University communications. All faculty and staff who have access to email, are expected to check their email regularly for University communications.

NOTE:  Some faculty and staff email records fall under the state-mandated Records Management Policy which was formally adopted and approved by the Truman State University Board of Governors (June 25, 2010).

Student Email – The University routinely uses email for both formal and informal communication (including emergency messages).  Students are required to utilize a University-provided account during their enrollment at the University, and students are expected to check their email regularly for University communications.

Broadcast Messages

In addition to the business communications cited above, broadcast messages to either all faculty/staff, all students, or to everyone on campus, are used for messages from the President’s Office, the Provost’s Office, or other offices about mission-related matters or issues of broad interest to the University community, and for emergency messages dealing with power outages, street closings, or other public safety matters. Any request to use broadcast email to contact students, faculty, or staff, including survey requests, must be sent to the Office of Public Relations or the Provost’s Office for approval.

The broadcast function generally is not used to announce events such as surveys, concerts, theatre performances, conferences, symposia, or colloquia sponsored by Truman units or organizations. Public events sponsored by Truman units or registered student and campus organizations may be posted on the electronic Truman State University calendar and/or submitted to the Office of Public Relations for inclusion in the Truman Today.

Email Account Ownership 

Truman State University-sponsored electronic mail accounts remain the property of the State of Missouri. The University disables accounts for faculty and staff no longer employed at Truman (with the exception of emeriti and retirees), and may disable student accounts after graduation.

Hosting Email Servers

Information Technology Services is responsible for email servers on campus, including anything utilizing the SMTP protocol [2].  Departments and/or individuals may not host their own separate email servers that connect to off-campus services/resources.

EXCLUSIONS OR SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES:

  •  Truman-sponsored electronic mail may not be used to support external organizations without securing written approval of the Provost or the Provost’s designee.
  • Information Technology Services (ITS) and Human Resources (HR) may send out broadcast messages to faculty, staff and students regarding campus-wide issues or activities without securing approval of the Provost’s Office or Public Relations first.

CONSEQUENCES:

By failing to abide by this policy or policy procedures, individuals may be subject to sanctions, up to and including the loss of computer or network privileges, disciplinary action, suspension, termination of employment, dismissal from the University, and legal action. Some violations may constitute criminal offenses under local, state, and federal laws. The University will carry out its responsibility to report such violations to the appropriate authorities.


REVIEW/CHANGE HISTORY:   2012/07/11, 2017/12/06


DEFINITIONS:

  1. “Electronic mail” refers to the creation, transmission, and/or storage of electronic messages using Truman State University’s communication networks. The messages can be notes entered from a keyboard or electronic files store on disk.
  2. SMTP – Simple Mail Transfer Protocol

RELATED DOCUMENTS:

The full text of the Records Management Policy is available online at Records Management and the applicable state regulations are found at sos.mo.gov/archives/localrecs/schedules.

KEYWORDS:

Email, Electronic Mail, Monitoring, Commercial Purpose, Incidental Use, Political Activity, Official Communication, Broadcast Email

Line of authority

Policy Administrator: Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs

Contact: Chief Information Officer, 111 McClain, 660-785-4163

Effective date

Effective Date: 12-06-2017

Approved Date: 12-06-2017

Policy Type: Operations