Network Use Policy UPPS No. 04.01.05
Issue No. 4
Review: September 1 E2Y
01. POLICY STATEMENTS
01.01 The purpose of this UPPS is to assure the reliability, security, integrity, and availability of the telecommunications network infrastructure at Texas State University-San Marcos. This policy documents practices and responsibilities associated with the administration, maintenance, expansion, and use of the University Network in order to:
a. provide reliable Intranet and Internet communications for the efficient conduct of university business;
b. assure that network usage is authorized and consistent with the university’s mission; and
c. protect the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of university information that traverses the University Network.
01.02 No individual or university component is permitted to independently deploy network devices that extend the University Network, or secure or isolate parts of the University Network, except as stipulated under this policy’s provisions. The university’s Technology Resources department is charged with overall responsibility for proper deployment and management of a fully monitored and protected network communication service, including all infrastructure elements, network address assignments, and radio frequency (RF) spectrum usage. Only the vice president for Information Technology or a designee may grant exceptions or exemptions to this policy.
01.03 To optimize their accessibility, usability, security, and privacy, all electronic and information resources developed or procured for use within the University Network shall comply with the applicable provisions of Texas Administrative Code, Chapter 213, Subchapter C, Rules §213.30 – §213.37, dealing with the accessibility, usability, and compatibility of electronic and information resources in institutions of higher education, commonly known as TAC 213.
02. RELATED DOCUMENTS
UPPS No. 04.01.01, Security of Texas State Information Resources
UPPS No. 04.01.07, Appropriate Use of Information Resources
UPPS No. 04.01.08, Texas State Internet Domain Name Policy
UPPS No. 04.01.09, Server Management Policy
03.01 Access Point – an electronic device that serves as a common connection point for devices seeking to use radio frequency waves to connect to a wired network. Wireless access points provide shared bandwidth such that as the number of users connected to an access point increases, the bandwidth available to each user decreases.
03.02 Application Administrator – an individual with principal responsibility for the installation, configuration, security, and ongoing maintenance of a software application or service that is accessed by users over the University Network (may also be a Server Administrator, see Section 03.12).
03.03 Device – any hardware component attached to the University Network to process, store, or transmit information. Examples of devices include laptop computers, desktop computers, servers, and network devices such as routers, switches, wireless access points, and printers.
03.04 Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) – facilitates the temporary assignment of network addresses to devices from a pool of available addresses allowing the university to reuse addresses when devices no longer need them. DHCP is the predominant alternative to permanent, static network address assignment.
03.05 Extend the Network – connecting a device other than a single end-system to a segment of the University Network (most often a data jack). For these purposes, an end-system is defined as a device (e. g., a computer) that has no other network connections, physical or virtual, other than its physical link to the data jack. Devices that extend the network include hubs, bridges, switches, routers, firewalls, NATs, VPN servers, or computers configured to provide any of this functionality. Extending the network does NOT include the use of software solutions such as Microsoft Windows Remote Desktop to connect to machines on the University Network from remote locations.
03.06 Interference – degradation of network communication signal due to electrical pulses or electromagnetic radiation from an external source.
03.07 Internet – a standards-based, global system of interconnected networks that utilizes Transmission Control Protocol /Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) for data representation, signaling, authentication, and error detection.
03.08 Intranet – a private computer network that uses Internet technologies and standards to securely share an organization’s information with the organization’s constituents; a generic name for the University Network.
03.09 Network Address (aka Internet Protocol Address or IP Address) – a unique identifier assigned to a network-connected device that is used to route network transmissions to their intended destinations on the Internet or Intranet.
03.10 RESidential NETwork (ResNet) – that portion of the University Network that serves university-owned and operated residence halls and apartment complexes. Because the vast majority of devices connected to the ResNet are personally owned and not under direct university management, special provisions are necessary to protect the University Network against threats such systems could introduce (see Section 06. of this UPPS).
03.11 Server – a computer that provides a specific type of service on behalf of another computer or computer user (i. e., a client). Examples include a file server that stores and manages access to files, a Web server that facilitates access to Web sites and pages, and a name server that maps user and computer names to machine and network addresses.
03.12 Server Administrator – an individual designated by the server owner as principally responsible for performing server management functions, including the installation, configuration, security, ongoing maintenance, and registration of the server (may also be an Application Administrator, see Section 03.02).
03.13 Service Set Identifier (SSID) – the name of a wireless network, or more specifically, a set of characters that identify a specific wireless network, as defined in the IEEE 802.11 standards.
03.14 System Compromise – any device that is no longer entirely under its owner's control. Two major sources of compromise are:
a. infection by a worm, virus or Trojan horse; and
b. exploitation of an operating system or application vulnerability by another user giving that user remote control of the computer.
03.15 User – An individual who utilizes an information technology device or service.
03.16 University Network – the data and communications infrastructure at Texas State. It includes the campus backbone, various local area networks (LANs, such as the ResNet), and all equipment connected to those networks. It includes the wired network as well as both the secure (encrypted) and open (un-encrypted) wireless networks.
03.17 Wireless Network – that part of the University Network infrastructure that uses electromagnetic waves (per IEEE 802.11 standards) instead of copper or fiber optic cable to connect computing and communication devices to the rest of the University Network and beyond.
04. GENERAL GUIDELINES
04.01 All devices connected to the Texas State University Network (wired or wireless) must support the university mission. The integrity, security, and proper operation of the University Network require an orderly assignment of network addresses and the correct configuration of devices attached to the network. Network access, performance, and security are put at risk when devices are introduced into the network environment without appropriate coordination. To mitigate this risk, Technology Resources shall manage all connections to the University Network with due consideration for accessibility, performance, privacy, and security.
04.02 Technology Resources shall coordinate the connection and network address assignment of any and all devices on the University Network. Other departments and individual users may not install, alter, extend or re-transmit network services in any way. Departments and individual users are prohibited from attaching or contracting with a vendor to attach equipment such as routers, switches, hubs, firewall appliances, wireless access points, virtual private network (VPN) servers, network address translators, proxy servers, and dial-up servers to the University Network without prior authorization from Technology Resources. Technology Resources may disconnect and confiscate any unauthorized network device, including wireless routers and access points. Personal software firewalls are permitted, as are printers, scanners, and similar peripheral devices if directly connected as a slave device to a desktop or notebook computer. Technology Resources reserves the right to monitor and audit individual devices, systems, and general network traffic to ensure compliance with this and other university policies.
04.03 The use of devices connected to the University Network is accompanied by certain responsibilities. Specifically, all users are required to perform timely updates of applications, operating systems, and virus protection software to minimize risks of system compromise. Technology Resources provides non-intrusive products and services for achieving such updates.
04.04 The wired component of the University Network is unencrypted. Server and application administrators that utilize this network to transmit sensitive or restricted and confidential information are responsible for the security of that information as it traverses the network. Examples of available protections include encrypted protocols such as SSL, IPSec, SSH, etc. Contact IT Security for assistance in implementing the necessary protective measures. NB. Section 04.08 of UPPS No. 04.01.01, Security of Texas State Information Resources describes sensitive and restricted or confidential information.
04.05 The university requires the registration of servers connected to the University Network. To satisfy this requirement, Information Technology employs a variety of methods and tools to discover both planned and actively connected servers requiring registration, including:
a. network scanning and penetration testing;
b. network performance monitoring and anomaly investigation;
c. annual information security risk assessments;
d. notification from various sources of planned or completed server procurements;
e. collaboration in the server acquisition process with acquiring departments;
f. collaboration with campus construction entities in the design of facilities that require network connectivity;
g. reports of suspicious system activity from internal and external sources; and
h. other automated and manual methods and tools as they become available and prove effective.
Following registration, IT Security will facilitate an information resources risk assessment to ensure compliance with state and university standards and best practices. For registration and assessment details, see: http://security.vpit.txstate.edu/tools.html.
04.06 A department’s administrative head is responsible for designating a server administrator for each server. The server administrator shall collaborate with IT Security and Technology Resources as necessary to:
a. register the server with IT Security;
b. protect the server against exploitation of known vulnerabilities. IT Security provides guidance for achieving such protection in its Server Management Technical and Security Standards and Procedures. Servers must comply with the provisions in this document anytime they are connected to the University Network. These standards and procedures will evolve over time to address new and evolving threats, so server administrators should refer back periodically for updates;
c. address and resolve security problems identified with any device for which they are responsible. Both IT Security and Technology Resources provide training, consulting, and problem resolution services;
d. utilize the protection benefits available through the university’s network edge protection mechanisms (e. g., firewall, intrusion prevention systems, etc.);
e. accommodate risk assessments, vulnerability scans, and penetration tests of their server by IT Security and take steps to mitigate the risks identified by these procedures; and
f. immediately report system compromises and other security incidents in a timely manner to IT Security at 512-245-HACK (4225) or firstname.lastname@example.org.
04.07 DHCP is the standard and preferred method for assigning IP addresses to campus devices. Departments or users desiring a static IP address may have to demonstrate why DHCP is inadequate for their purpose. Those denied static IP addresses may appeal to the director of Infrastructure Services and then to the associate vice president for Technology Resources whose decision is final. Technology Resources reserves the right to change static IP addresses periodically to address new or modified university requirements and will notify static IP address users in advance of pending changes to those addresses.
04.08 Virtually all rooms and meeting spaces at Texas State are equipped with wired or wireless connectivity. Nevertheless, facility reservations do NOT necessarily include the right to use the University Network for any and all purposes. Consistent with UPPS No. 01.04.13, Policy Guidelines for the Use of Texas State Equipment by Outside Entities and UPPS No. 04.01.07, Appropriate Use of Information Resources, the university cannot guarantee support of outbound streaming of audio or video by reserving parties.
Departments that accept facility reservation requests from external parties shall ascertain the party’s need for outbound audio or video transmissions and consult with the associate vice president for Technology Resources or designee about that need. To assure compliance with this provision, departments that administer building or room reservations should include the following (or similar) statement on all reservation applications and request forms:
“Outbound streaming of audio or video is not permitted from this facility without advance notice and consultation. The reserving party declares that it - DOES / DOES NOT (circle one) - wish to stream audio or video from this facility.”
06.06 Online gaming consoles (e. g., Xbox, PS2, Wii, etc.) may connect to the ResNet, but university support is limited to basic network connectivity. ResNet users should note that gaming consoles do not generally incorporate host firewalls, anti-malware protection, or other security features commonly available for general purpose personal computers with up-to-gate operating systems. Consequently, ResNet users should utilize their gaming consoles solely for gaming purposes and avoid the use of consoles for higher risk activities like Web browsing and Internet chat. The use of gaming consoles in violation of this policy, UPPS No. 04.01.07, Appropriate Use of Information Resources, or any other university policy may result in revocation of gaming privileges and other progressive disciplinary action.
07.01 IT Security or Technology Resources will disconnect a device posing an immediate threat to the University Network in order to isolate the intrusion or problem and minimize risk to other systems until the device is repaired and the threat is removed. In coordination with administrative departments and law enforcement, IT Security and Technology Resources will investigate any incident involving unauthorized access or improper use of the University Network. Devices involved in these and other incidents will remain disconnected from the University Network until the user, owner, or server administrator brings the device into compliance with all relevant policies and standards. IT Security and Technology Resources will attempt to notify appropriate departmental personnel when disconnecting departmental devices from the network under this provision.
07.02 IT Security and Technology Resources may disconnect devices involved in repeated incidents for longer periods as required to reduce security risks to an acceptable level. IT Security may require the responsible server administrator to demonstrate compliance with UPPS No. 04.01.09, Server Management Policy, and the Server Management Technical and Security Standards and Procedures through an audit review or other assessment of the offending device and any other devices for which the administrator is responsible. If a server administrator lacks the knowledge or training needed to comply with this policy, Technology Resources will assist the department in addressing the deficiency, including development of an appropriate training program.
07.03 Texas State cooperates fully with federal, state, and local law enforcement authorities in the conduct of criminal investigations. The university will file criminal complaints against users who access or utilize the University Network to conduct any criminal act.
08.01 Reviewers of this UPPS include the following:
Associate Vice President for September 1 E2Y
Special Assistant to the Vice President September 1 E2Y
for Information Technology
Information Security Officer September 1 E2Y
Director, Infrastructure Services September 1 E2Y
Vice President for Information September 1 E2Y
This UPPS has been approved by the following individuals in their official capacities and represents Texas State policy and procedure from the date of this document until superseded.
Associate Vice President for Technology Resources; senior reviewer of this UPPS
Vice President for Information Technology