Forms Policies

Appropriate Use

ITS Appropriate Use Policy (Policy 1607) – Quick Reference (Full Text of Policy 1607, Information Technology Appropriate Use Policy)

The rules in this policy apply to all users of Yale’s network and information technology (IT) systems. They also apply to personal machines connected to Yale networks and IT resources.

The following brief summary of the ITAUP is for your convenience— please consult the full policy if there is any doubt as to what is expected of you. 


  1. IT Systems are to be used to support education, research and administration at Yale. You shall not use these systems for commercial purposes, or in any way that suggests Yale supports a particular political view or candidate.
  2. You must obey the law when using Yale’s IT resources. You may be held personally responsible if you break the law while using Yale’s IT resources. For example, using file sharing software to illegally distribute or “share” copyrighted works is expressly prohibited.
  3. You must abide by all University policies while using Yale’s IT systems.
  4. You are responsible for the content of your electronic communications (email, texts, tweets, etc.), your conduct on online (web posts, discussions, meetings, etc.), and your conduct on Yale IT Systems (use of the network, library systems, databases, etc.).
  5. Free inquiry, expression and courteous behavior is not only allowed, but encouraged-- Harassing, voyeuristic, threating behavior is not.
  6. Destructive use of Yale systems is not allowed. Sending spam or distributing malware (such as a worm, or virus) is prohibited.
  7. Access to many systems is restricted. If you attempt to circumvent the security in place on these systems (e.g. through “hacking”), your activity may be logged and you may face discipline.
  8. You are responsible for your NetID account and its password. Create a strong password and do not share your password. You shall not use another user’s NetID or impersonate another user.
  9. “Student” software licenses are to be used by students for academic purposes; “academic” software licenses are to be used for noncommercial work that supports the University and its academic mission.
  10. Respect the confidentiality and privacy of others using Yale IT Systems. In some environments, you may be required to encrypt data or follow special procedures to protect privacy and confidentiality. The ITS website contains more information about data security and compliance issues.
  11. Report any violation of these policies so that the University may investigate and take appropriate action.  As a result of reported violations or security issues, Yale may suspend or deactivate your access to a specific IT system or to a number of IT systems. ITS will make its best effort to contact you concerning such changes in access.
  12. Under certain circumstances, the University may access your machine or your data without your permission as allowed or required by law. Generally this is done to address security incidents or in order to access Yale-owned data inaccessible by other means. Please see the full text of Policy 1607, § 1607.2 for specific details here.

Failing to follow the above guidelines may result in discipline or other negative consequences. If in doubt, please review the full policy document; consult with your local IT support provider, or contact the Office of the General Counsel for guidance.