Purpose

This policy is intended to provide Board members with standards for acceptable use of NDE computer equipment, Internet access and electronic mail.  These standards apply to Board member use of NDE computer equipment, Internet access and electronic mail.

NDE computer equipment, Internet access and electronic mail are public resources.  These public resources are provided to NDE Board members for the conduct of state business.  In addition, the NDE computer or phone equipment, Internet access, electronic mail, or the state telecommunications system may be used by Board members for email, text messaging, a local call, or long-distance calls to a child at home, a teacher, a doctor, a day care center, a baby-sitter, a family member or any other person to inform him or her of unexpected schedule changes, and for other essential personal business while they are engaged in state business away from home.  Subject to the standards listed below, use of the NDE computer equipment, Internet access, electronic mail, and phone use for essential personal business shall be kept to a minimum and shall not interfere with the conduct of state business.  Board members shall be responsible for payment or reimbursement of charges, if any, that directly result from such communication.

Acceptable uses of NDE Computer Equipment/Internet Access/Electronic Mail include:

  1. To communicate with NDE internal and external customers and staff, including other state agencies, units of government, citizens, advisory committees or professional associations related to the Board member’s duties and responsibilities.
  2. To access databases or files for purposes of work-related reference or research material.

Unacceptable uses of NDE Computer Equipment/Internet Access/Electronic Mail include:

  1. Violation of the privacy of other users and their data. For example, Board members shall not intentionally seek information on/obtain copies of/or modify files, other data or passwords belonging to other users, or represent themselves as another user unless explicitly authorized to do so by that user, and such authorization is appropriate.
  2. To violate copyright and licensing laws applied to programs and data.
  3. To install software without prior authorization from Network, Education & Technology Services.  Use of all such software must comply with the applicable license agreement provisions.
  4. To violate the integrity of computing systems. For example, Board members shall not develop or use programs that harass other users or infiltrate a computer or computing system and/or damage or alter the software components of a computer or computing system.
  5. To use NDE computer equipment/Internet access/electronic mail for fund-raising or public relations  activities unrelated to a Board member’s duties and responsibilities to the State of Nebraska.
  6. To transmit material in violation of any local, state or federal law or regulation.  It is prohibited to transmit or knowingly receive threatening, obscene, or harassing material.  Harassing material includes material that is derogatory towards a group or individual based upon race, sex, sexual orientation, color, religion, disability, age, or national origin.
  7. To use NDE computer equipment/Internet access/electronic mail or any attached network in a malicious or disruptive manner that precludes or significantly hampers its use by others.  Disruptions include, but are not limited to, distribution of unsolicited advertising, propagation of computer worms or viruses, and use of NDE computer equipment/Internet access/electronic mail to make unauthorized entry to any other machine accessible via the network.
  8. To advertise a product or services on behalf of self or others.
  9. To use NDE computer equipment/Internet access/electronic mail for recreational games or personal shopping.
  10. To use NDE computer equipment/Internet access/electronic mail to conduct private business activities or for private financial gain, including but not limited to, stock trading.
  11. Misrepresentation of one’s self, an agency, or the State of Nebraska when using NDE computer equipment/Internet access/electronic mail.

 

Security Safeguards

Board members are prohibited from allowing non-employees to use NDE computer equipment/Internet access/electronic mail.

Board members are prohibited from sharing passwords to any state government computer system.

Board members are responsible for taking reasonable steps to safeguard the integrity of the NDE computer system.

 

Enforcement

NDE reserves the right to monitor use of all NDE computer equipment, Internet access and electronic mail for purposes of enforcing these acceptable use standards.  Accordingly, Board members do not have a privacy right with regard to their use of NDE computer equipment, Internet access, and electronic mail.

The State Board will take remedial action in response to a violation of this policy.  Remedial action may include termination of, or restrictions on, computer system access for any Board member responsible for the violation of any of the provisions of this policy.  If, in the judgment of the Board, it is believed that criminal activity has taken place, the Board will direct the Commissioner to notify the proper authorities and will assist in any investigation and prosecution of any offense.