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Ripon leaders mulling over IT security staff policy

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POSTED July 26, 2013 1:51 a.m.

The plan to update the City of Ripon’s Information Technology Security Policy was put on hold last week.

The Ripon City Council, at the July 16 meeting, opted to table the policy consisting of some changes coupled with one addition as put together by Dan Brannon, who is the city’s Information Systems Technician.

Councilman Leo Zuber wasn’t comfortable with the revisions. He had requested the original policy and was aware that time thus far wasn’t a factor.

“I’d like more time to look (the policy) over,” he said.

This policy will be revisited at a future meeting. Council not only agreed to table this item but also voted to cancel the Aug. 6 meeting, which coincides with the community’s National Night Out event. The next scheduled meeting is Aug. 20.

Brannon made minor revisions throughout the policy. He removed some of the unnecessary language, updated definitions, and eliminated “irrelevant and superfluous” language.

“Those changes focus on brevity, but do not materially modify the policy,” he said.

The reason for the policy is to recognize the role of computer, network, telephone, e-mail, and other related “information systems” matters relating to conducting efficient government business. It was developed to provide some clear guidelines for acceptable use of the city’s Information Systems and not intended to impose restrictions.

Brannon and his department are committed to protecting the City of Ripon employees and partners.

He added sections 4.0 and 5.0, which addresses mobile devices and e-mail, respectively, among the policy updates.

In 4.0, the policy implementation included general use and ownership, security and propriety information, unacceptable usage, and social networking as a representative of the City of Ripon.

E-mail is covered in 5.0 as it relates to the Public Records Act.

Prohibited in this section are employees sending unsolicited e-mail messages, including junk mail or other advertising materials, against the request of other individuals.

Any form of harassment – e-mail, telephone or paging – is a no-no.

Creating or forwarding chain letters, “Ponzi” and other pyramid schemes are also prohibited.

In addition, Brannon, who updated this same policy some four years earlier, included “e-mail messages and attachments that are to be retained must be printed and retained for the required time period as outlined in the Ripon Records Retention Policy” to a part of section 8.0 (Electronic Data Retention Policy).

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