Basic Technology Security Expectations


Bellevue College has a number of policies, procedures, standards defining how the institution and its diverse community of users will comply with state and federal information technology security laws, policies and requirements which affect the use of campus computing technology.  This KB summarizes some of the key things a campus users should know regarding the basic expectations related to their use of college technology.

Information Technology Services

Information Technology Services (ITS) is the campus unit with the primary responsibility for helping to ensure campus users are able to accomplish their work while maintaining a secure computing environment.  ITS works closely with you, unit administrators and the whole campus on a daily basis, providing support services through the technology Service Desk (5644357) and the technical support units. 

An online resource to report technology problems and request assistance is available by submitting a ticket through TDX.  Problems reported in TDX will be assigned to the first available support personnel on duty who can work to resolve your problem. 

Security Expectations

College technology users have a significant and key role in helping to maintain the integrity and security of state resources and the data stored and manipulated with those systems.  The following is important basic information related to technology security expectations on campus:

Acceptable Use Policies

Before obtaining a campus login or e-mail account, each college technology user has affirmed that they have been given the opportunity to read five fundamental college Information Technology security policies and their applicable accompanying procedures:

You should be familiar with these policies, as they affect your daily use of technology.  The rules articulated in those policies are, for the most part, common sense: don’t use your computer to do anything illegal; don’t do anything that will jeopardize the security of the computers or the college network. If you’re uncertain about a specific allowable use, a good test is to ask yourself, “Would I or the college be embarrassed if this activity were reported in the Seattle Times?”   

Ethics Board Rules

All state employees are bound by the state Executive Ethics Board administrative rules. These rules prohibit personal use of all state resources (including technology), with an exception for “de minimus” use which incurs “no cost to the state, …does not interfere with performance of the employee’s official duties, …is brief in duration and does not disrupt or detract from the conduct of state business due to volume or frequency,” and “…does not compromise the security of state information or software.”

E-mail Guidelines

Each campus e-mail user is expected to abide by the tenets of the college’s e-mail guidelines, which were developed to encourage effective and orderly use of the College e-mail systems.

The aforementioned permission for de minimus use allows for occasional personal e-mail.  However, any e-mail use specifically for “…the purpose of conducting an outside business, …supporting, promoting, or soliciting for an outside organization, …any campaign or political use, …commercial uses such as advertising or selling,” or any “…illegal activity” is strictly prohibited.   Unauthorized use of e-mail or the Internet outside the established guidelines are dealt with in the same manner as any violation of college policies, and may result in disciplinary review.

Individual Privacy

The contents of all e-mail generated using college systems belong to the institution, and therefore are considered under Washington state law as a public record.  The school must turn copies of e-mail over to higher authorities if properly requested. (This is a very good reason not to use e-mail for sensitive or confidential matters.) 

Bellevue College relies upon the professional responsibility of every employee to do the right and legal thing. College computers and networks are not routinely monitored for inappropriate use, but, if ITS receives a valid request for computer or network records from another agency, we will cooperate fully. And if someone reports suspicious or illegal activity, or we discover such in the course of normal daily operations, appropriate action will be taken.

Software Installation

Software used on campus may only be installed by ITS technical support staff or other designees specifically authorized by the Vice-President of Information Technology Services.  All requests for purchase and/or installation of software on computers at the college will need to be made by submitting a ticket to ITS. 

ITS technical support personnel cannot support software or computers that are not owned by the college and/or installed by ITS or an authorized designee.  However, there are processes in place which allow the appropriately documented use of personally-owned software in the campuses classrooms and offices.  Please refer to the college Software Licensing Compliance policy and procedure for further information.

Use of Personal Equipment

Personally-owned computing equipment, including laptops, tablets, portable storage devices (such as external hard drives, MP3 players and smart phones) and other types of equipment, may often be used with the college network and computers.  There are no restrictions in connecting these types of equipment to the wireless network on campus. 

However, if such a device is connected to a wired network connection on campus (plugged into a wall), or connect physically to another device already on the wired college network (such as connected to a physically-connected computer), their use must be documented and approved following procedures established in a number of IT security policies and standards.  Please contact the Technology Service Desk (x4357) for further information if you wish to use any of your own technology equipment on the college network.

Further Information

The information included in this KB is of a necessity very basic and brief. If you have any questions regarding the appropriate uses of Bellevue College technology, or about the support services available through Information Technology Services, please contact the Technology Service Desk (x4357).

All college policies and procedures are posted on the main college website.

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Article ID: 21258
Wed 12/7/16 12:23 PM
Mon 1/30/17 11:46 AM