Email Use Procedures

Purpose

The purpose of the Napa Valley College Email Use Procedures is to maintain the positive image and credibility of Napa Valley College; to legally protect the District, its students and employees; and to promote effective, collaborative working relationships. Email sent from Napa Valley College mail systems to external recipients may be viewed as an official policy statement from the District. Additionally, the institution is legally mandated to protect a variety of data, and inappropriate messages can disrupt or diminish productivity.            

Scope

These procedures cover appropriate use of any email sent from a Napa Valley College email address and apply to all employees, vendors, and agents operating on behalf of Napa Valley College. 

Responsibilities

NVC employees are responsible for the appropriate use of campus email systems. Email users must respect software copyrights and licenses, respect the integrity of computer-based information resources, refrain from seeking to gain unauthorized access, and respect the rights of other computer users.            

Procedures

Prohibited Use. The Napa Valley College email system shall not be used for the creation or distribution of any disruptive, offensive, obscene, or illegal messages including but not limited to the following: 

·         offensive comments about race, gender, disability, age, sexual orientation, or national origin

·         pornography

·         religious beliefs and practice

·         political beliefs or partisan activity

·        defamatory, fraudulent, harassing, or threatening content

·         chain letters, pyramid schemes, illegal contests, or “spam”

·         joke emails  

·         content which violates applicable federal, state, or other law or District policy.

Employees who receive any emails with disruptive, offensive, or illegal content from any Napa Valley College employee should report the matter to their supervisor or the Dean of Human Resources immediately.

Knowingly downloading or transmitting viruses, corrupted files, malicious web site links, or anything that may or is intended to damage or compromise the operation of another's computer is also prohibited.

Any software or other material protected by intellectual property laws may not be transmitted via the district email system unless appropriate consents have been obtained.  

Confidential student or employee data may not be sent via email without employing a secure level of encryption. Contact the IT department for current best practices.

A user name and password should never be emailed in the same message.

Electronic communications facilities may not be used to transmit commercial or personal advertisements, solicitations or promotions unless clearly consistent with the mission of the college. 

Personal Use. Employees may not access personal email accounts from a Napa Valley College system as computer viruses or malicious software may be inadvertently introduced.

While the NVC email system is intended for District use, incidental personal use may be acceptable, if such use cannot reasonably occur away from work.  However, non-work related email received and sent should be saved in separate folder(s) from work related email.  Computer virus or other malicious software warnings and mass mailings from Napa Valley College shall be approved by IT before sending.

Use of the everyone@napavalley.edu address shall include “PERSONAL” in the subject line for personal announcements. The allstaff@napavalley.edu is reserved for campus related business only.

These restrictions also apply to the forwarding of mail received by a Napa Valley College employee.

Accessibility. In accordance with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act and District policies and guidelines, all email shall be accessible to persons with disabilities. This applies to all internal and external email as well as any attachments including text, graphics, audio, and video. Individual or workgroup email to known persons without disabilities should meet Section 508 standards as practical. Alternative accommodations or accessible formats must be made available upon request and shall comply with all applicable laws and District policies and guidelines.

Monitoring. Napa Valley College employees shall have no expectation of privacy in message content they store, send or receive on the campus email system. Napa Valley College reserves the right to monitor messages without prior notice but will exercise this right only for legitimate District purposes, including but not limited to ensuring compliance with this policy as well as the integrity and security of the system. In addition, the California Public Records Act (Government Code Sections 6250 et seq.) includes electronic communications in the definition of “public record” and nonexempt communications made on the District network and computer must be disclosed if requested by a member of the public.

Enforcement. Any employee found to have violated these procedures may be subject to discipline as noted in Napa Valley College Administrative Procedures document “AP 3720 Computer and Network Use Procedures.”

Signatures. Original emails are to include an email signature containing the senders name, job title, institution, and additional contact info such as phone number followed by a message similar to the following: “This email message including any attached files is for the sole use of the intended recipient(s) and may contain confidential and/or privileged information. Any unauthorized review, use, disclosure or distribution is prohibited. If you are not the intended recipient, please contact <username>@napavalley.edu by reply mail and destroy all copies of the original message and any and all attachments.”