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Computer Services Memo

To: The University Community
Timothy C. O'Rourke,
Vice President for Computer and Information Services
April 2003
Software Policy Compliance

For the past several years, various colleges and departments within Temple University have been audited for compliance with the University's Software Policy. This memorandum is issued in an effort to remind the University community of the importance of complying with that policy and to reiterate the seriousness of failing to do so.

Simply put, the unlicensed duplication or use of any software program is illegal and can expose both you and the University to civil and criminal penalties under copyright law. Temple University's Software Policy was adopted in order to:

  • establish standards of conduct with respect to software acquisition, copying, transfer and use;
  • inform students and employees of the repercussions associated with software misuse;
  • set forth disciplinary procedures for such misuse; and
  • avoid University liability for individual's violations of copyright law and software licenses.

The Software Policy applies to all software acquired by or on behalf of Temple University and all software (however acquired) used on Temple University resources. Each user is individually responsible for reading, understanding, and adhering to the Software Policy, Computer Usage Policy and all licenses, notices, and agreements in connection with software, which he or she acquires, copies, transmits, or uses. An individual who violates the Software Policy is subject to any combination of the  following:

  • immediate system "lock-down" to prevent installation of future software;
  • suspension or revocation of computer accounts; and
  • disciplinary action as detailed by the relevant policies and rules for faculty, staff, and students. These actions may include suspension, expulsion or termination of employment.

Without limiting the individual's personal liability, the applicable unit (e.g., administrative or academic department, center, institute, school or college) for any employee who violates the Software Policy is internally responsible for:

  • any assessed or agreed to fee/fine/settlement/license amounts associated with remedying noncompliance and restoring an appropriately licensed system;
  • costs associated with future installation/upgrade of software; and
  • costs associated with monitoring compliance.

In addition to University disciplinary actions, individuals who commit copyright infringement are personally subject to civil and/or criminal sanctions. Temple University is under no obligation to defend, indemnify or hold harmless such violators, as acting in violation of federal law is clearly outside the course and scope of employment. Furthermore, the University can be expected to cooperate with law enforcement officials in the investigation and prosecution of any violator.

Temple University's Software Policy and Computer Usage Policy and a number of resources available to assist you in understanding software licensing and ensuring compliance with these policies including Instructional Course on Software Licensing and Related General Copyright Law and Software Management and Compliance Guidelines are located online at:

Please contact the Computer Services Manager of Software Contracts at (215) 204-6700 should you have any questions or require assistance. Thank you for your cooperation.

Reviewed 11/08