E-mail Standard

A. Users

An individual member of Georgia Southwestern State University community, faculty, staff, student, or an organization may be issued an email account. This email account will remain valid so long as the individual is currently employed or enrolled at Georgia Southwestern State University. Retired employees may request to have their email accounts remain active after they leave GSW.  Other employees that leave GSW may request to keep their accounts active for up to one year.  Student email accounts are suspended one year after last semester the student attended GSW classes.

B. Cautions

 The proper use of the email account is ultimately the responsibility of the individual under whose name it has been assigned. Therefore, it is the user's responsibility to guard his/her password and not share his/her email account and password with others.

All email is subject to disclosure under the Georgia Open Records Act and therefore any individual could at any time request to see copies of any or all of the e-mails on your computer. Users should exercise extreme caution in using email to communicate confidential or sensitive matters, and should not assume that email is private and confidential.  It is especially important that users are careful to send messages only to the intended recipient(s).  Particular care should be taken when using the "reply" command during email correspondence.

Since there is no guarantee that electronic mail is authentic, it is prudent to be somewhat skeptical of the "From:" addresses that appear in messages. Mail between campus mail systems or from off-campus can very easily be "spoofed", i.e. the message is sent in such a way that it appears to be from someone other than the true sender. Anyone who has doubts about the identity of the sender of any message should communicate with the purported sender by some other means (e.g. phone) to confirm the content of the message.

Email at GSW is not encrypted (it is sent over the network in clear text). Exercise caution when sending personal and confidential information.

To keep your computer and your personal information safe, you should always follow these rules:

  • NEVER give out sensitive or confidential information (passwords, credit card information, social security numbers, etc.) over email.  GSW IIT will not ask you to send sensitive information over email since it is sent over the internet in an insecure manner.
  • NEVER click links in an email or open email attachments unless you know what they are and you trust the person that sent you the email.
  • NEVER reply to SPAM or suspicious email.  Doing so verifies that your account is active, and may make you a target for more junk mail
  • ALWAYS describe (in the body of the email) the contents of any attachment you send over email, and only send attachments to people that are expecting them.
  • ALWAYS be wary of where any given email message comes from.  Email regarding any account you have with GSW will come from an email address that ends in “@gsw.edu”.
  • ALWAYS put a subject on your email.  A blank subject line is a red flag for spam filters, and makes it harder for the recipient to properly catalog your message.
  • ALWAYS BE PARANOID.  If a message looks suspicious for any reason, chances are high that it’s junk.  In most cases it’s better to miss a legitimate email than to risk becoming a victim.

C. Restrictions

Email account limits are set to 4 GB for faculty & staff and 25 GB for students. The user will receive a warning when the maximum size limit of the email account is being approached. If the maximum size limit on your account is reached, your account will no longer be able to send or receive mail.

Avoid sending email attachments when ever possible. Especially avoid sending email attachments to large groups of individuals. Do not send an attached word processing document for information that can easily be provided in the text message of your email. Sending attachments with extensions of .com, .exe, or .bat are prohibited, and are blocked by GSW email servers. Sending .zip (compressed) files is allowed, however caution is recommended in opening .zip files. For more information about opening and creating zipped files visit http://www.winzip.com/aboutzip.htm

Email attachments should not exceed 10 MB. The server will reject messages that, including attachments, are over 50 MB in size.  If faculty/staff need to exchange large files with colleagues request from OIIT that a folder share be set up on the public share for that purpose. Large attachments may also easily be zipped before sending.

The signature at the bottom of an email should only contain information relevant to the recipient of the email, though it does not need to contain the sender's email address.  The use of quotations and gems of wisdom in signatures of emails that concern official University business is prohibited.

Background images and unnecessary custom fonts/styles do not add anything to the actual message of your email, and are highly discouraged.

An email should always contain information in the subject and text body. An email that does not contain a relevant subject or that merely contains an attachment with no message should be considered suspicious and deleted.  

D. Misuse

The sending of offensive messages to individuals on the network or inappropriate use of the Internet and other networks to which Georgia Southwestern State University is directly or indirectly connected will be deemed abuse of computer privileges. When discovered, the abuser's email account will be terminated immediately. The use of another individual's email account without his/her expressed consent will be viewed as theft and as computer fraud, and could result in sanctions outlined in Section 7 of the Georgia Southwestern State University Computer and Network Use Policy.

E. Technical Support

If you have a problem with your email account, please call tech support at 931-2074.