Effective Date: August 30, 2019
Last Reviewed: March 4, 2022

Stonehill College’s network is an academic and business network. Accordingly, the College’s electronic mail (“email”) addresses are for academic and business use. Discretion should be used with respect to occasional personal use of email and subscription to academic or professional listservs, newsgroups, and other mail delivery services. Junk, “spam,” or unsolicited bulk email is a distraction for employees and a burden on the College’s email system. Therefore, employees should not subscribe to any service that is not clearly reputable without first determining how to unsubscribe. Additionally, employees should make every attempt to prevent services from sharing their email addresses with third parties. Limited personal use of email is permitted, as long as, in the College’s sole opinion, it is not excessive and does not interfere with the academic or business needs of the College.

The College’s email addresses and the internal and external messages sent and received on the College’s network are the property of the College and are not the private property of employees. College email is subject to legal requirements (such as compliance with privacy laws, or discovery in legal proceedings); therefore, the College must maintain control over the email system. Although the College does not as a regular practice read emails as a means of monitoring employees, it does regularly monitor capacity, storage, and general use in order to maintain its systems. Moreover, the College has the right to, and does, monitor employee email content.

While email messages are the property of the College, employees should treat other employees’ email as private. Employees may not access another employee’s email without prior authorization from the employee or from the President of the College, or his designee(s). This prohibition shall not prevent a member of the College’s Information Technology staff from assisting an employee with an email access issue. The accessing of an email account without the employee’s knowledge is extremely rare and is usually in connection with a substantive legal matter. In such cases, access is limited to College attorneys and legal support staff, and the Director of Human Resources. With the exception of such legal matters and internal investigations, the College will provide written notice to an employee prior to accessing email. If prior notice is not possible, the employee will be notified at the earliest opportunity unless notification would compromise the purpose for accessing the email.

Emails sent and received by employees internally and externally in the course of their official capacity, as an employee of the College, will be treated consistently with the College’s document retention policies, procedures, and customary office practices.

Consistent with Policy F9.2 Information Security, confidential or privileged information should not be sent by email unless with appropriate warnings, safeguards, or encryption.

A violation of this Policy may result in disciplinary action ranging from a verbal warning or suspension of system privileges up to discharge from employment.

Information Technology shall immediately suspend email access capabilities of any employee whose employment with the College is involuntarily terminated.

Information Technology shall suspend email access capabilities of employees who voluntarily leave their employment with the College; Information Technology shall suspend such service consistent with a published schedule that Information Technology shall maintain.

If there is a College need for an employee who voluntarily leaves their employment to continue to have access to their email, the President or appropriate Divisional Vice President may notify the Department of Information Technology to maintain such email capability to a date certain or indefinitely. In those instances, the former employee’s accessing of their email account constitutes their agreement to adhere to the College’s email and network use policies, and to maintain the confidentiality and integrity of the College’s email system.

Information Technology may maintain suspended emails of former employees and sent and received messages consistent with College document retention policies and shall provide access to said emails to the President or the President’s designee(s), or the former employee’s Divisional Vice President or their designee(s), as required to conduct College business.

This policy shall at all times be implemented in a manner consistent with all other College policies, including, but not limited to; F9.5 Wireless Network, E3.35 Harassment and Discrimination, S1.14 Sexual and Gender-Based Misconduct and Interpersonal Violence, and E3.54 Domestic Violence Leave Act.

The College’s email system must not be used to violate any law, regulation, or College policy.