A virus is a piece of potentially malicious programming code that will cause some unexpected or undesirable event. Viruses can be transmitted via e-mail or instant messaging attachments, downloadable Internet files, diskettes, and CDs. Viruses are usually disguised as something else, and so their presence is not always obvious to the computer user. A virus infection can be very costly to Western Oklahoma State College in terms of lost data, lost staff productivity, and/or lost reputation.
As a result, one of the goals of Western Oklahoma State College is to provide a computing network that is virus-free. The purpose of this policy is to provide instructions on measures that must be taken by Western Oklahoma State College employees to help achieve effective virus detection and prevention.
This policy applies to all computers that are connected to the Western Oklahoma State College network via a standard network connection, wireless connection, modem connection, or virtual private network connection. This includes both company-owned computers and personally-owned computers attached to the Western Oklahoma State College network. The definition of computers includes desktop workstations, laptop computers, handheld computing devices, and servers.
1. Currently, Western Oklahoma State College has a campus license for Sophos Antivirus Licensed copies of Sophos can be obtained at www.portal.wosc.edu. The most current available version of the anti-virus software package will be taken as the default standard. Automatic update features will be installed on all newly installed systems.
2. All computers attached to the Western Oklahoma State College network must have standard, supported anti-virus software installed. This software must be active, be scheduled to perform virus checks at regular intervals, and have its virus definition files kept up to date.
3. Any activities with the intention to create and/or distribute malicious programs onto the Western Oklahoma State College network (e.g. viruses, worms, Trojan horses, e-mail bombs, etc.) are strictly prohibited.
4. If an employee receives what he/she believes to be a virus, or suspects that a computer is infected with a virus, it must be reported to the IT department immediately at the Helpdesk 477-7907 Report the following information (if known): virus name, extent of infection, source of virus, and potential recipients of infected material.
5. No employee should attempt to destroy or remove a virus, or any evidence of that virus, without direction from the IT department.
6. Any virus-infected computer will be removed from the network until it is verified as virus-free.
Rules for Virus Prevention
1. Always run the standard anti-virus software provided by Western Oklahoma State College.
2. Never open any files or macros attached to an e-mail from an unknown, suspicious, or untrustworthy source.
3. Never open any files or macros attached to an e-mail from a known source (even a coworker) if you were not expecting a specific attachment from that source.
4. Be suspicious of e-mail messages containing links to unknown Web sites. It is possible that the link is a malicious executable (.exe) file disguised as a link. Do not click on a link sent to you if you were not expecting a specific link.
5. Files with the following filename extensions are blocked by the e-mail system:
NOTE: A hardware anti spam device was added November 2006
6. Never copy, download, or install files from unknown, suspicious, or untrustworthy sources or removable media.
7. Avoid direct disk sharing with read/write access. Always scan a floppy diskette for viruses before using it.
8. If instructed to delete e-mail messages believed to contain a virus, be sure to also delete the message from your Deleted Items or Trash folder.
9. Back up critical data and systems configurations on a regular basis and store backups in a safe place.
10. Regularly update virus protection on personally-owned home computers that are used for business purposes. This includes installing recommended security patches for the operating system and other applications that are in use.
IT Department Responsibilities
The following activities are the responsibility of the Western Oklahoma State College IT department:
1. The IT department is responsible for maintaining and updating this Anti-Virus Policy. Copies of this policy will be posted at www.western.cc.ok.us/support Check this location regularly for updated information.
2. The IT department will keep the anti-virus products it provides up-to-date in terms of both virus definitions and software version in use. Software is automatically updated from the vendor site hourly. When individual systems are set up software is installed so that a script runs and automatically updates individual systems are updated daily. An update is installed if there is an update.
3. The IT department will apply any updates to the services it provides that are required to defend against threats from viruses.
4. The IT department will install anti-virus software on all Western Oklahoma State College owned and installed desktop workstations, laptops, and servers.
5. The IT department will assist employees in installing anti-virus software according to standards on personally-owned computers that will be used for business purposes. The IT department will provide anti-virus software in these cases.
6. The IT department will take appropriate action to contain, remove, and assist in recovery from virus infections. In order to do so, the IT department may be required to disconnect a suspect computer from the network or disconnect an entire segment of the network.
7. The IT department will perform regular anti-virus sweeps of all system files.
8. The IT department will attempt to notify users of Western Oklahoma State College systems of any credible virus threats via e-mail or telephone messages. Virus reports will not be acted upon until validated. Employees should not forward these or any virus warning messages in order to keep network traffic to a minimum.
Department and Individual Responsibilities
The following activities are the responsibility of Western Oklahoma State College departments and employees:
1. Departments must ensure that all departmentally-managed computers have virus protection that is in keeping with the standards set out in this policy.
2. Departments that allow employees to use personally-owned computers for business purposes must implement virus protection processes and procedures that are in keeping with the standards set out in this policy.
3. All employees are responsible for taking reasonable measures to protect against virus infection.
4. Employees must not attempt to either alter or disable anti-virus software installed on any computer attached to the Western Oklahoma State College network without the express consent of the IT department.
Any employee who is found to have violated this policy may be subject to disciplinary action.
Effective: January 1999
Revised November 2006 Added antispam hardware device which blocks additional file extensions