Laptop Usage Policy

Occidental College Policy Information & Content:

What is this Policy?

This policy outlines the responsibilities that Occidental College Faculty and Staff must accept when they are issued a laptop computer.

Who is affected by this policy?

This policy applies to Faculty and Staff at Occidental College who have been issued a laptop by the College.

Why was this policy created?

Laptops provide the convenience of portability. This convenience exposes the College to certain risks. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Theft of College property - laptops are easy to steal and their relatively high value and easiness to sell makes them common targets of theft.
  • Exposure of sensitive information - misplaced or unsecured laptops may expose sensitive information to the public.
  • Damage of College property - laptops are more susceptible to damage, both due to their portable nature and their relatively fragile construction.

What do I need to do?

If you are issued a laptop, you must sign a copy of the Occidental College Laptop Usage Policy upon receipt. The signed copy of the policy will be kept in the Dean of the College's office until the laptop is returned or replaced. A link to the policy will also be posted on the College Policies and Guidelines webpage.

Occidental College Laptop Usage Policy - Content

When an Occidental College Faculty or Staff member is provided with a laptop, he/she accepts responsibility for safeguarding the laptop itself as well as the data stored on the laptop. 

Laptop users are expected to exercise reasonable care and take the following precautions:
  • Take appropriate steps to protect the laptop from theft.
  • Laptop security cables should be used whenever possible. Security cables will be provided by ITS and ITS staff can provide instruction on proper usage of the security cable.
  • Laptop security cables should be used whenever possible. Security cables will be provided by ITS and ITS staff can provide instruction on proper usage of the security cable.
  • Laptops that are not secured with a cable and left unattended overnight should be kept in a locked drawer or cabinet, if available. Otherwise, the laptop should be kept out of plain sight.
  • Laptops left unattended in a parked car should be kept out of plain sight or locked in the trunk.
Do not work on or save sensitive information on a laptop without taking appropriate precautions
  • Sensitive information refers to any data that is protected by College policy, or by any local, state or national laws or regulations. This includes, but is not limited to, education records, personally identifiable information, and confidential internal College information.
  • If working with sensitive information, contact ITS to get encryption software installed.
  • ITS staff will answer any questions regarding what data is considered sensitive and what is not.
Take care to protect the laptop from damage
  • Laptops should not be used in locations that might increase the likelihood of damage.
  • Laptops should be kept in a padded carrying case or sleeve during transportation.

Report damage, loss or theft as soon as possible

  • Reports should be sent to the Technology Helpdesk. The Helpdesk can be reached by phone at (323) 259-2880 and by email at helpdesk@oxy.edu. In the case of theft, a report will also need to be made to Campus Safety at (323) 259-2511 or by email at campussafety@oxy.edu.
 
If a laptop is damaged, lost or stolen and the above precautions were not followed, the person to whom the laptop was provided will be held responsible for assuming part or all of the cost of repairing or replacing the laptop. The determination of responsibility will be made by the Dean of the College in consultation with ITS.If you have questions about the policy, please contact the Dean of the College at 323-259-2908, the Vice President for Administration and Finance at 323-259-2694, or Information Technology Services at 323-259-2880.