IT Policy

IT POLICY;

Computer Use

Misuse of the email, internet or other systems can expose the Company to significant risk. You must only use the email and access the internet on authorised and recognised business. Care must be taken when attaching documents to ensure there is no breach of copyright and you must not disclose confidential information.

You must not send access or download defamatory, offensive or pornographic material.

You must familiarise yourself with the Company IT procedures and systems and should not use Company equipment unless properly trained to do so. If you receive an e-mail from an address that you are not familiar with, please refrain from opening the e-mail and contact IT for authentication and virus check. Any new software must be formally authorised by IT who will install it for you.

As a general rule, no private work, social networking, e-mails of a social personal nature or computer game playing is permitted during official working hours. The e-mail system and use of the internet is provided to some employees at the Company’s expense to assist them in carrying out the Company’s business and therefore should be used for that purpose. When using these facilities, employees are expected to act sensibly and responsibly to ensure that the Company is not exposed to legal action or its reputation compromised.

Receiving programmes, pictures or games by e-mail is completely unacceptable. Misuse of computers can be regarded as a serious disciplinary offence. The following are examples of misuse:-

- Breaches of the Data Protection Act

- Downloading or storing inappropriate material

- Excessive use of personal e-mails/ personal social networking sites and/or the Internet for non-work related reasons.

- Fraud and theft

- Hacking / obtaining unauthorised access

- Introducing of viruses and time bombs

- Sending abusive, rude or defamatory messages via the computer system

- System sabotage

- Using documents that are likely to put the systems security at risk e.g. screen savers, programmes received by e-mail

- Using the system for private work, private social networking, game playing and e-mailing during normal working hours

- Using unauthorised software

This list is not exhaustive and depending on the circumstances of each case, misuse of the computer system is likely to be considered as gross misconduct. Any misuse amounting to criminal conduct may be reported to the police.

The Company has access to all e-mail address accounts and can monitor the length of time and what web sites have been visited on the Internet. Please be aware that random checks are carried out on all e-mail accounts and Internet usage, so your mail can be read by the Company. Employees who deal with personal data are in a particularly sensitive position and must bear in mind at all times the provisions of the Data Protection Act as shown above.

E-mail Policy

The use of the email system within the Company is encouraged; it’s appropriate use will facilitate communication and improve efficiency. Used correctly, it is a facility that is of assistance to many employees. It’s inappropriate use, however, causes many problems ranging from minor distractions to legal claims against the Company. This section sets out the Company’s view on the correct use of the email system, and how this can be achieved, as well as the Company’s responses to inappropriate use.

Email Monitoring

The Company reserves the absolute right to monitor employee’s use of email;

Email is not private and the Company reserves the right to access email and audit the use of the system.

Email Authorised Use

The email system is available for communication on matters directly connected with the business of the Company. Employees using the email system should give particular attention to the following:

  • The standard of presentation; the style and content of an email communication must be consistent with the standards the Company expects from written communications.
  • The extent of circulation: email messages should only be sent to those employees for whom they are particularly relevant.
  • The appropriateness of the email; email should not be used as a substitute for face-to-face communication. Emails that are abusive can be a source of stress and can damage working relationships; whilst hasty messages sent without due consideration can cause unnecessary misunderstandings.
  • The visibility of email; if the message is confidential, the user must ensure that the necessary steps are taken to protect confidentiality.
  • Defamatory information; be aware that the Company will be liable for any defamatory information circulated either within the Company or externally.
  • Email contracts; offers or contracts transmitted via email are as legally binding to the Company as those sent on paper.
  • Record-keeping; copies of email should be retained as appropriate. Email is a form of documentation and records should be kept. However confidential information should be kept in an appropriate file rather than the ‘Inbox’ or ‘Sent Items’.

Email Unauthorised Use

The Company will not tolerate the use of the email system for any of the following:

  • Any message that could constitute bullying, harassment or discrimination.
  • Personal use e.g. social invitations, jokes or chain letters.
  • On-line gambling.
  • Accessing or sending pornography, obscene or defamatory material.
  • Downloading or distributing copyright information and or / any unlicensed software.
  • The opening of attachments on unauthorised emails which may expose Company systems to viruses.

Internet Policy

The use of the internet within the Company is encouraged, as its appropriate use provides access to a wide variety of useful information. Used correctly it is a facility which can be of valuable assistance to the company and to the employee in the performance of their job. Its inappropriate use, however, can cause many problems, ranging from excessive costs for the Company to possible legal claims against the Company.

Internet Monitoring

The Company reserves the absolute right to monitor employees’ use of the Internet.

Internet Authorised Use

Access to the Internet is provided to employees for matters directly concerned with the business of the Company. You should be aware that:

  • Leaving internet access open while away from your desk may mean that unauthorised use may occur in the absence and be attributable to you. This may also mean that unauthorised access may be gained e.g. to the People System which would contravene the Data Protection Act.
  • Spending long periods of the working day on the Internet means normal work is not being done and / or colleagues are picking up an unequal share.

Social Networking Policy

  • Personal communications should have clear disclaimers that the views expressed by the author in the blog is the author’s alone and do not represent the views of the company. Make your writing clear that you are speaking for yourself and not on behalf of the company.
  • Information published on social networking sites should comply with the company’s confidentiality and disclosure of proprietary data policies. This also applies to comments posted on other blogs, forums, and social networking sites.
  • Be respectful to the company, other employees, guests, partners, and competitors.
  • Social media activities should not interfere with work commitments.
  • Your online presence reflects the company. Be aware that your actions captured via images, posts, or comments can reflect that of our company.
  • Do not reference or site company clients, partners, or guests without their express consent. In all cases, do not publish any information regarding a client.
  • Respect copyright laws, and reference or cite sources appropriately. Plagiarism applies online as well.
  • Company logos and trademarks may not be used without written consent.
  • Failure to follow the above guidelines or posting off defamatory comments regarding the Company, its clients or fellow employees may result in disciplinary action.

Unauthorised Use and Information Security

You must take the appropriate steps to guard against unauthorised access to, alteration, accidental loss, disclosure or destruction of data.

Under no circumstances should you divulge your password to anyone else; even if they have authority to use the system they may have different access levels and privileges to you and allowing them to use your access may be a contravention of Company policy and / or the Data Protection Act.

You must not gain access or attempt to gain access to information stored electronically which is beyond the scope of your authorised access levels.

Any systems problems should be reported directly to the IT Support team via byte.support.

Data Protection

During your employment you may have access to personal data including personal information, banking details and credit card information relating to other employees and / or guests. You must follow Company guidelines to ensure this data is used only for the purposes provided and cannot be accessed by others.

Protection of data about individuals is now a requirement of the law. The Data Protection Act states that:-

  • · Data shall be obtained and processed fairly and lawfully
  • · Data shall be held for specific purposes and not used or disclosed in any way incompatible with these purposes.

Everybody using information on a computer or information produced from a computer have an obligation to see that it is not passed on in any unauthorised way and therefore printouts must be treated carefully and employees should not disclose personal data outside of the line of duty. If any individual is found to have permitted unauthorised disclosure they, as well as the organisation, can face prosecution.

This includes ensuring management offices are kept locked, guest details are not left where they may be accessed by unauthorised persons or members of the public.

Do not share passwords for reservations or People System with others and ensure you log out or return to the home screen when systems are not in use so people’s personal details cannot be viewed by unauthorised users.

Should you have any problems or queries please contact adam.purslow@ircplc.co.uk