HARNET Acceptable Use Policy

Information Technology Office Policies HARNET Acceptable Use Policy

HARNET Acceptable Use Policy

HARNET (Hong Kong Academic and Research Network) is managed and operated by the Joint Universities Computer Centre (JUCC) to provide quality, equitable, and cost-effective information and communication resources to JUCC Members and to promote the development, deployment, operation and technology transfer of advanced network infrastructure for innovation, research and educational excellence in Hong Kong. HARNET is for the use of persons legitimately affiliated with JUCC Members or Affiliate Organizations, and to facilitate the exchange of information consistent with the academic, educational, research, collaboration and other official purposes of the JUCC Members. All individuals affiliated with JUCC Members or Affiliate Organizations are responsible for seeing that computing, network and HARNET resources are used in an effective, ethical and lawful manner, and that the guidelines provided in this document are followed, both in letter and in spirit.

Principles of Proper Use of the HARNET

  • Access and use must be consistent with the goals and purposes of the HARNET
  • Avoid interfering with the work of other users of the HARNET
  • Avoid disrupting the HARNET host systems (nodes)
  • Avoid disrupting HARNET services
  • Avoid violating any applicable laws and regulations governing the access to systems, information and data on HARNET & Internet, and transmission of information and data through HARNET & Internet

Acceptable Use of HARNET

  1. Use of HARNET must be authorized – HARNET is, at the discretion of the institutions involved, open to use by staff and students enrolled at participating JUCC Members or Affiliate Organizations, by other persons legitimately affiliated with the JUCC Members; and at the discretion of JUCC, by approved non-profit-making organizations or individuals.
  2. HARNET is not to be used for commercial purposes, such as marketing, or business transactions between commercial organizations.
  3. Commercial advertising on the HARNET is forbidden. Discussion of a product's relative advantages and disadvantages by users of the product is encouraged. Vendors may respond publicly to questions about their products as long as the responses are not in the nature of advertising.
  4. A user is not allowed to transfer or resell the network resource, which has been allocated by a JUCC member institution or a HARNET participating affiliated organization, in various possible forms, such as network bandwidth and connection time, access rights, computer budget, etc.
  5. Any waste of resources of the HARNET is unacceptable, e.g. repetitive retrieval of copies of the same files by a user who does not keep a copy on his own system.
  6. Any activities that will interfere with the intended use, cause congestion or impair the healthy state of the HARNET are unacceptable and prohibited.
  7. Irresponsible use of electronic mail, e.g. chain letters, broadcasting messages, or the use of other forms of network communications to harass or offend other users on the Internet through the HARNET is prohibited.
  8. Research and experimentation on or via the HARNET should be carried out with great caution. Any such research and experimentation which will lead to substantial depletion of the available bandwidth of the HARNET must be avoided.
  9. Users of HARNET must not compromise the confidentiality and privacy of other users on Internet, and the integrity of data and information mounted on or transmitted across the Internet through the HARNET. A breach of any of these principles is generally considered a legal offence. Unauthorized reading, altering, intercepting of, or electronic eavesdropping on any network communications over the HARNET or data kept on systems on the HARNET are examples of violation of these principles.
  10. Any communication conducted on or via the HARNET which violates applicable laws and regulations, including but not limited to those related to copyright, data privacy and transmission of obscene and indecent materials, is not allowed.

JUCC Members and Affiliate Organizations are expected to take reasonable measures (given the constraints of technology and management) to ensure that usages are conformed to these guidelines. Acting on complaint is considered as a reasonable measure.

Final authority for the HARNET Acceptable Use Policy lies with the JUCC Steering Committee. It is the responsibility of HARNET Member representatives to contact the JUCC Steering Committee, in writing, regarding questions of interpretation. Until such issues are resolved, questionable use should be considered “not acceptable”.