This policy was agreed by KLS Trustees on 11th September 2013.
All KLS policies are reviewed every three years (or earlier if the law changes).
This policy will be reviewed again in September 2024.
1. About Katherine Low Settlement
Katherine Low Settlement is a charity that has been serving Battersea and the wider Wandsworth community since 1924. We are dedicated to building stronger communities and enable people to challenge and find ways out of poverty and isolation.
We run a range of our own community projects to support older people, refugee communities and children, young people and families. In addition to these direct services, we also use our premises to act as a local hub for other charities and community groups so that as partners, we can meet the diverse needs of the communities of Wandsworth. Each week we work with 45+ charities and community groups supporting more than 1,100 people. Visit www.klsettlement.org.uk
- Katherine Low Settlement IT Acceptable Use Policy
An IT acceptable use policy (AUP) describes the rights and responsibilities of anyone using resources, such as computers, the Internet, social media, video cameras and so on. It explains the procedures they are expected to follow and makes clear what is considered acceptable behaviour when using it, helping to ensure user safety and organisational security and maintain good practice where possible.
KLS operates an IT policy that applies to all staff, volunteers and users of our services. This is to ensure that:
- We are in a position to offer effective and efficient IT facilities within available resources
- We can generate savings by having a co-ordinated approach to our purchasing hardware and software
- On-costs and on-going IT support and maintenance can be planned effectively
- Access to IT is appropriate to the requirements of any given role
- Internal training can be carried out effectively
- Systems are compatible throughout the organisation where possible
KLS’ IT acceptable use policy can be found on KLS website (download) and is available on request. It forms part of the KLS induction process.
It should be re-read and shared with all staff, volunteers and users if a new IT project is being set up
The policy is endorsed by the Katherine Low Settlement’s Trustees and will be reviewed every three years to make sure it remains relevant and appropriate to the needs of KLS.
This IT Acceptable Use Policy is freely accessible to all.
- Purchasing equipment, software and services
Within budgetary constraints we aim to ensure that access to IT facilities is fair and equitable whilst being appropriate for the job to be carried out. Some projects will have specific funding for computer equipment; other staff will have access to shared computers.
Any purchase or acquisition of all computers, software and services should be agreed in advance and authorised by the appropriate Project Manager, in conjunction with KLS’s outsourced IT Support company, CoopSys. Orders should be placed through the Administrator and Premises Manager (Tracy Frostick).
Please treat all hardware with care and respect. Equipment that has broken or expired should be repaired where possible, otherwise disposed of responsibly. Speak to the Administrator and Premises Manager (Tracy Frostick).
- Donated Equipment
Supporters sometimes offer to donate equipment. Please consult with the Administrator and Premises Manager (Tracy Frostick) beforehand to assess how useful such a donation may be and any additional costs it may incur to the organisation e.g. upgrading.
KLS use Microsoft Office 365 cloud software. The software will be automatically updated on a regular basis.
All programmes loaded onto computers must be licensed for use within the organisation. Software not licensed for use at KLS should not be loaded onto any KLS computers or equipment. The consequences for KLS, discovered using unlicensed material, could be severe and result in hefty fines.
A record of all software installed, licenses and applications will be kept centrally.
Do not download software, software updates or introduce new software to work on your PC or laptop without first checking with the Administrator and Premises Manager (Tracy Frostick). Virus software is maintained and periodically updated. If your PC does acquire a virus please follow the de-bugging instructions from the anti-virus software and report the incident to your line manager and KLS IT support company, CoopSys.
Faults should be reported to your line manager. They should try to address the issue themselves. If they are not able to your Project should seek advice from KLS’ outsourced IT Support company, CoopSys.
- Security and Safety
Staff are responsible for ensuring that computer hardware is secure and should speak to the Administrator and Premises Manager (Tracy Frostick) about secure storage and if they have any concerns about possible theft. This is particularly true of laptops which can be easily taken. No confidential client or staff data should be help on a laptop that is being used off site.
You must take the appropriate steps to guard against unauthorised access to, alteration, accidental loss, disclosure or destruction of data e.g. password protection for all PCs; and log off a PC if leaving the room (i.e. press the windows key + L = this locks a computer).
Virus software is maintained and periodically updated. If your PC does acquire a virus please follow the de-bugging instructions from the anti-virus software and report the incident to your line manager.
We pay particularly attention to systems that are used by children and young people. Additional security measures should be in place to block access to inappropriate sites and materials, as well as appropriate IT training for our members, agreed by the Project Manager.
All equipment will be checked regularly for safety in line with KLS’ regular portable appliance testing schedule.
Obviously, it is advisable to avoid eating or drinking around PCs and similar equipment to avoid accidents and damage to the machines. When using IT equipment with users and clients it is best to adopt a ‘no food or drink in the room’ approach.
- Email and email attachments
Only use email for work related purposes.
Sending an email is sometimes far easier than speaking to someone face to face or even talking on the telephone, especially if you have something difficult to say. Once an email has been sent it cannot be retrieved. Think before you hit the send button! Do not email in anger or annoyance – avoid sending aggressive or abusive emails.
Please do not pass on chain mail, jokes, spam or hoax virus warnings etc.
Care should be taken when attaching documents to ensure there is no infringement of copyright and you must not disclose confidential information. If the attachment is large then please consider forwarding a link to a file uploaded or sending a compressed zip file.
If you are unsure about the origin of an email attachment please do not open it before you contact the Administrator and Premises Manager (Tracy Frostick). Also please make contact if you are receiving large amounts of ‘junk mail’.
The internet should be used in the main for work purposes only. However, we understand that you may wish to use the internet during a work break for your own purposes and provided that your manager agrees and you follow the guidelines contained within this policy that is fine. (Please see the Monitoring section below).
- Social Networking Sites
Some of our projects use blogs, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Linked In and other social media as communications tools (this list is not exhaustive). Access to these are available to all staff. Whilst use of social networking sites, as with the use of the internet and email, is acceptable during non-work time, we would like to remind everyone that social networking sites make it very easy to say things that may be considered inappropriate in other contexts and cannot be retracted. We would like people to use the same level of care in how and what you say online and to whom as you would use face-to-face, on the telephone or by email.
Should any inappropriate sharing of organisational information, data or derogatory comments about KLS, about individual employees or groups of employees or our clients and users be made, KLS will move to have such information removed and individuals involved will be dealt with through our disciplinary procedures.
Many of our employees work with children, young people and vulnerable adults. It is never appropriate to make contact with service users or their relatives / friends via social networking sites. Any such contact will be dealt with through our disciplinary and safeguarding procedures.
Staff email and internet access are not monitored on a regular on-going basis but we do undertake spot checks to ensure that inappropriate or offensive material is not being accessed or shared within our systems. Any evidence of such access will be fully investigated and confirmation of such use is likely to lead to disciplinary action. The Administrator and Premises Manager (Tracy Frostick) will undertake to investigate fully any allegation of accessing or holding inappropriate materials on work computers or portable drives and devices.
We pay particularly attention to systems that are used by children and young people. Additional security measures should be in place to block access to inappropriate sites and materials. Regular checks are undertaken to ensure that all procedures are being complied with. Staff should also note that their own personal data, files and email accounts should not at any time be held on work PC’s or laptops.
Please note – KLS reserves the right to check all material held on work PCs and laptops for operational and security reasons.
- Training and Development
You are encouraged to develop your IT skills whether it is a direct requirement of your job or not. In-house peer training is encouraged and external courses are sometimes available. The KLS Induction Process for all new staff and volunteers should cover IT usage and include such things as introduction to the systems, file management, and KLS’ IT Acceptable Usage Policy. IT will be covered in regular supervision sessions and annual appraisals. If you have an IT training need please speak to your line manager.