Electronic Data Communication

April 1998
Chapter 5

Section: 5:080

Electronic Data Communication

Responsibilities of Information Providers

University departments, staff, and student that attempt to represent the institution, its units, or its activities must do so accurately, with clear, high-quality, current and pertinent information. Such official information must include reference to:

  • The maintainer of the information, such as department, e-mail address and telephone number.
  • Higher-level or centralized sources of further information, such as the MU Web site.

Anyone providing information about the University, its units, staff, or student must obey all University policies regarding authority, presentation, and confidentiality of such information.

Unauthorized or draft publications that the public might access must not use official logos or marks, and must disclaim official capacity if their status would likely be misinterpreted.

This policy urges maintainers to: inspect their publications at least twice a year for accuracy; not duplicate another units online information, but rather link or refer to it; accommodate disabled viewers; accommodate older and limited technologies; and avoid content that could easily be construed as defamatory or unethical.

Review for Confidential and Revenue Information Services

Any University organization or member aiming to provide confidential communications or for-free electronic services or making significant changes to such facilities, must review their content and security with a representative of DoIT or other authority that can conduct an effective independent security audit. This review aims to minimize exposures of confidential information, to minimize service failures, to identify copyright and other legal exposures, and to generally minimize risks to users and the institution.

Secondarily, this review attempts to track use of University resources so that sufficient quantities and qualities of these will be available, and to insure fair compensation and recognition of the institution and its units. This process may identify redundant services of find ways to achieve economies of scale.

Whether reviewed or not, applications may be denied infrastructure service if found to be insecure or disruptive.

E-Mail Authenticity

Students must ignore unauthenticated electronic mail announcing cancellation of a class or assignment if no other, more reliable communication (such as a Web page) affirms the message. In general, University members should seek other verification of any significant request for action announced via unauthenticated means, including bulletin boards, telephone messages, and electronic mail.