Network Usage Policy


This policy is a guide to the acceptable use of the Asbury Theological Seminary’s (ATS) network. It is intended to address issues involved in the use of ATS’s wired and wireless networks, as well as the Internet for transfer of information. This includes but is not limited to email, file transfer, or use of applications which utilize the networks. In the case where electronic information is carried across other networks (i.e. outside ATS), users are advised that acceptable use policies of those networks also apply and may further limit use. ATS employees may be subject to additional guidelines as specified in the Asbury Theological Seminary Personnel Policy Manual and Faculty Handbook.

This policy applies to faculty, staff, students, contractors, consultants, temporaries, and other workers at the Seminary, including all personnel affiliated with third parties as well as guests, invited and uninvited. This policy applies to all systems and equipment that are owned or operated by the Seminary.


The ATS networks are the property of Asbury Theological Seminary and have been established to facilitate an exchange of information that is consistent with the academic, educational, and research purposes of Asbury Theological Seminary.


Students, faculty, staff, and affiliates of Asbury Theological Seminary are granted temporary access to the networks and the Internet to assist them in their academic, educational, and research responsibilities as they pertain to ATS. Personal use is permitted, provided it follows the guidelines described in this policy.

Regardless of whether ATS networks are used, statements of personal opinion should not be represented as that of the Seminary and should, where needed to avoid confusion, include disclaimers that they do not necessarily represent the opinions of Asbury Theological Seminary.

Limitations of Use

All users are expected to use ATS’s computing resources and the Internet in a professional, lawful, and ethical manner, consistent with the Seminary’s Ethos, policies and applicable law. Subject to the Seminary’s ethos, mission and rights as a religious institution, nothing about this policy prohibits activity protected by law.

Prohibited Uses

Without prior permission from ATS, the networks may not be used to disseminate advertisements, solicitations, promotions, or any other unauthorized materials. The networks may never be used to create, disseminate, or otherwise transmit destructive codes (e.g. viruses, Trojan horse programs, etc.), or for the purpose of hacking or other unauthorized access into another computer, network system, or technology.

Any illegal use of the ATS network is strictly prohibited.

Illegal Copying

Users may not illegally copy material protected under copyright or other laws or make that material available to others for copying. Users are responsible for complying with copyright or other laws and applicable licenses that may apply to software, files, graphics, documents, messages, music files, or any other material. This would include complying with the entirety of the ATS Copyright Policy.

Frivolous Use

Network bandwidth and storage have a finite capacity, and all users are expected to be responsible in their use of these resources. Users are not permitted to monopolize these resources. Examples of this  include but are not limited to sending mass email or chain letters or using applications that create excessive loads on network traffic.

Objectionable Material

Asbury maintains the right to utilize software that makes it possible to identify and block access to Internet sites containing sexually explicit material or other material deemed inappropriate in the Asbury community or in any way inconsistent with the Asbury Theological Seminary Ethos, policies or applicable law.

Personal Computing

All personal computing systems, including laptops, workstations, and tablets, should be secured with a password-protected screensaver with the automatic activation feature set at 10 minutes or less, or by logging-off when the host will be unattended.

Keep passwords secure and do not share accounts. Authorized users are responsible for the security of their passwords and accounts. System level passwords should be changed quarterly; user level passwords should be changed every six months.

The use of personal email accounts for official Seminary business is expressly prohibited. Postings by employees and students from a Seminary email address or account to newsgroups, social media outlets or similar forums should contain a disclaimer stating that the opinions expressed are strictly their own and not necessarily those of the Seminary, unless posting is in the course of business duties.

All equipment used by the employee that is connected to the Seminary networks and systems, whether owned by the employee or the Seminary, shall be continually executing approved virus- scanning software with a current virus database unless overridden by departmental or group policy.

All personnel must use extreme caution when opening e-mail attachments received from unknown senders, as they may contain viruses, e-mail bombs, or Trojan horse code.

Electronic Privacy

Monitoring of Computer and Internet Usage Subject to any restrictions imposed by law, ATS has the right to monitor and log any and all aspects of its networks and computer systems, including but not limited to Internet sites visited by users, chat and newsgroup activity, application and network bandwidth usage, and file transfers.

Data Security

Staff, faculty, students working for the Seminary, and administration have an obligation to ensure that personal information concerning students or employees is secured against loss, misuse or unauthorized access, modification or disclosure. Employees of the Seminary have a duty to maintain the confidentiality, integrity and security of official information for which they are responsible.

Employees should take all reasonably necessary steps to prevent unauthorized access to confidential information. Examples of confidential information include but are not limited to: Seminary strategies, personally identifiable student information, and advancement data.

Services provided through ATS’s networks have security measures in place to protect the loss, misuse, and alteration of the information under our control. While we make every effort to ensure the integrity and security of our networks and systems, we cannot guarantee that our security measures will prevent third-party hackers from illegally obtaining this information.

User Accounts & Privacy

In cases where individual user accounts are administered by ATS, the Seminary’s Administrators may have the ability to access, monitor, use, or disclose data within the accounts.

Account Security

Users are typically assigned account IDs and passwords for access to ATS network and computer resources. Accounts are provided for exclusive use of the specific individual to whom they have been assigned. Transfer, possession, or use of account information that has been assigned to another individual is not permitted. Use of any ATS account constitutes giving one’s word as the appropriate user of that account and signifies acceptance of the purposes outlined in this policy.

Violation of Policy

An appropriate ATS official will review alleged violations of this policy on a case-by-case basis. Violation of policy may result in disciplinary action, in the case of students and employees, and/or restriction of access to the networks or to network-based services.

Asbury Theological Seminary reserves the right to modify this policy at any time.