APS #6002

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Electronic Communications

Brief Description

Establishes electronic communication as the official means of communication and related parameters for use.  Electronic communication includes email, text messaging, and emerging technologies that are part of software solutions.

Reason for Policy

Establishes electronic communication as the official means of communication and related parameters for use.

Policy Profile

APS Policy Title: 
Electronic Communications
APS Number: 
6002
Effective Date: 
July 1, 2018
Approved By: 
President Bruce D. Benson
Responsible University Officer: 
Vice President of Administration and Vice President for Communication
Responsible Office: 
Office of the Vice President of Administration and Office of the Vice President for Communication
Policy Contact: 
The Vice President of Administration or Vice President for Communication will respond to questions and provide guidance regarding interpretation of this policy. Any exceptions to this policy must be approved by the appropriate governing IT board.
Supersedes: 
Electronic Communications, July 1, 2014
Last Reviewed/Updated date: 
July 1, 2018
Applies to: 
Universitywide

I. INTRODUCTION

The university provides electronic communication resources to support its work of teaching, scholarly research, public service, advancement, and constituent engagement. This administrative policy statement establishes electronic communication as the official means of communication and related parameters for use.

II. POLICY STATEMENT

  1. Official Means of Communication to the University Community
    1. The university shall use electronic communications as an official means of communication to convey information to the university community (employees, affiliate staff, associates, students, alumni, and donors).  Electronic communication often refers to email, but can also include other forms of communication.
    2. All employees, students, appropriate affiliate staff and appropriate associates shall be provided an official university email account1 for conducting university business.
    3. Members of the university community are responsible for information contained in electronic communications from their official university email account.
    4. The university may also ask employees to subscribe to other electronic communications such as instant messaging or text messaging for emergency communications as approved by the Chief Information Officer or Vice President of Administration.
  2. Email Procedures
    1. Preferred Platform

      The eComm Program (Salesforce, Marketing Cloud, and Cvent) is the preferred platform and is the only supported tool for marketing communications at CU. The program protects the operational integrity, value, and availability of university communications, constituent data, campus networks, security, and electronic communications services. Mass audience and bulk email communications shall be sent via eComm or receive an exception (see eComm policy for description of exception process).
    2. Accessibility

      Communications shall be crafted to respect accessibility concerns and meet Accessibility of Information and Communication Technology policy stipulations.
    3. Branding

      Communications shall be crafted in accordance system and campus brand identity standards.
    4. CAN-SPAM

      All CU communicators shall send communication preferences (opt-out, opt-in, interests) data back to CU’s Central Information Warehouse (CIW) and shall, in turn, incorporate opt-out data from the CIW to ensure compliance with CAN-SPAM and that email preferences are honored. Do Not Email and Do Not Contact flags for external audiences are respected in audience definitions.
    5. Data

      CU shall own all constituent data, regardless of where it is housed or the unit that creates/maintains it.  In some cases, units’ constituent data shall be shared and included in communications distributed to a broader interested audience (i.e. the President’s electronic newsletter).
    6. Privacy

      FERPA privacy flags shall be respected in all communications; constituents with these flags shall only receive email messages related to educational business. Audiences defined by protected classes – Office of the Registrar, Strategic Relations and Communications and the Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance - shall be excluded from communications as deemed appropriate. Other federal laws, including HIPAA, shall be respected in content and execution.
    7. Server Loads and Send Times

      Users shall throttle their send rate in order to balance server loads. Send rates shall not exceed five messages per second. Messages to audiences containing over 10,000 university email addresses shall be sent outside normal business hours.
  3. Official Communications Sent on Behalf of the University

    When sending official mass electronic communicationsOfficial Mass Electronic CommunicationsSee Section III. Definitions, care must be taken to: 1) ensure the message delivery does not adversely affect the network, email routing or mail server infrastructure; 2) ensure that communications are consistent with university policy; and 3) not hinder the ability to validate that an electronic communication is legitimate.
    1. All official mass electronic communications sent on behalf of the university, including, but not limited to, promotions, awareness, invitations, events, and notifications, shall originate from authorized university domains.  To assist validating the legitimacy of a communication the Office of Information Security (www.cu.edu/ois) shall publish authorized domains.
    2. All official mass electronic communications sent on behalf of the university should only contain web address links to authorized university domains.
    3. Any exceptions, such as need to include links to non-university domains, must be approved by the appropriate Information Security OfficerInformation security officerThe person who performs day-to-day management of and is the point of contact for the IT Security Program at the campus level..
    4. To assist in validating the legitimacy of a communication the university shall archive official mass electronic communications in the university web portal until no longer needed for reference.
  4. Information Technology Office Responsibilities
    1. The appropriate IT office will use reasonable methods to ensure official communications are delivered to university-owned and controlled servers and that content is also made available online.
    2. The appropriate IT office will assign the official university email address where the university will send email communications. This official address will be the address stored in the campus or system-maintained directory.

III. DEFINITIONS

IV. RELATED POLICIES

V. HISTORY

  • Use of Electronic Communications – approved 3/1/96.
  • Use of Electronic Communications – replaced by Use of Electronic Mail on 7/1/97.
  • Use of Electronic Mail – replaced by Electronic Communications on 7/1/14.
  • Revised July 1, 2018.

VI. KEY WORDS

E-mail, electronic communications, on-line, information technology

  • 1. An official university email account is one which is recognized by the email directory maintained by the appropriate IT office in accordance with their policies.