AUC Policy Banning Peer-To-Peer File Sharing In Accordance With The Higher Education Opportunity Act Of 2008
Approved By: Chief Technology Officer
History: Issued - June 30, 2010
Responsible Office: Information Technology Security Office
In compliance with the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 (HEOA), the American University in Cairo adopts the following plan in order to deter unauthorized distribution of copyrighted material by users of the university's network, while at the same time not unduly interfering with educational and research-related use of the network.
This policy applies to all users of University owned or managed computer-related equipment, computer systems, and interconnecting networks, as well as all information contained therein.
There are no definitions applicable to this policy.
The use of peer-to-peer computer file sharing programs (e.g., BitTorrent, KaZaA, Morpheus, Limewire, iMesh, Gnuttella, Grokster, and all similar programs and their successors) that are primarily employed to share copyrighted works is prohibited on the campus network. Where possible, peer-to-peer communication will be intercepted and blocked by network control systems. The use of methods designed to evade that blocking is prohibited. Specific exceptions to this policy may be approved by the Chief Technology Officer in instances where such programs will be used exclusively for educational/research purposes and in a manner that complies with the Egyptian and US copyright laws.
AUC employs multi-layer of technologies to combat illegal file sharing, using Intrusion Prevention Systems to block delectable P2P traffic across the two campuses. Also, bandwidth management and throttling is employed to limit bandwidth consumption and the number of connection that can be utilized by P2P to hinder the P2P activity.
Educating the Community
The university uses numerous mechanisms to educate and inform the community by using several channels to communicate with its community, such as: AUC news website, Email Announcements targeted to Students, Faculty and Staff. In addition, the students run publications will be invited to cover this topic. The University is planning to include this policy in the student, faculty and staff handbooks in the future.
Procedures for Handling Unauthorized Distribution of Copyrighted Material
The IT security office traces the source of distribution of illegal content. Upon successful identification of the device used and or the user, the IT security office reports the incident to the appropriate disciplinary entity based on the user role at AUC; Accordingly Students, Faculty, and Staff cases are forwarded to VP of Student Affairs, Provost, Human Resources Executive Director respectively.
Legal Alternatives to Downloading
AUC has not made any special arrangements of this type.
Procedures for Periodic Review of This Plan
On Semi-annual basis, the IT Security office conducts tests to ensure the effectiveness of the solution in place and accordingly decides if further enhancements should be implemented or not.