Software Policy

Ownership of Software
Responsibility of Assuring Compliance
Copying and Distributed Licensed Software
Use of Installation Credentials
Installing University Licensed Software
Upgrades
Illegal Software
Compliance Audit

Ownership of Software

All software purchased or installed by central Information Technology Services (ITS) will be licensed to and owned by the university. ITS maintains a library of centrally-licensed software, licenses, and software documentation. Software purchased (including work-at-home program purchases) or installed by an individual, using personal funds, will be licensed to and owned by the individual.

Responsibility for Assuring Compliance

Central ITS tracks licenses for software installed by ITS through a number of methods, including purchase of high-volume or site licenses, and/or software discovery agents installed on university owned devices. Certain software licensed by the university that is specifically identified for “Academic Use Only” by central ITS must be used for academic and/or research purposes only and must not be used for university administrative or business purposes. Departmental Directors and Chairs are responsible for assuring that all software used and purchased by their department is fully licensed. The primary user of each computer is responsible to keep records of licenses for each item of software purchased or installed by the individual.

Copying and Distributing Licensed Software

No person shall make or distribute by any means, copies of software without first possessing a lawful copy, and then, only in compliance with the applicable software license. All copies must carry a complete copy of the applicable software license documentation. Copies made under license purchased by the university remain the property of the university. Copies made under license purchased by an individual, remain the property of the individual.

Use of Installation Credentials

License keys, installation codes, and other installation credentials shall be obtained from legitimate sources, and shall not be shared except only by authorized individuals acting within the scope of their employment. Unauthorized possession and/or distribution of installation credentials is a violation of the Appropriate Use Policy (AUP).

Installing University Licensed Software

University owned machines are provided a standard image of applications provided by central ITS. Only designated software licensed by the university for home use may be installed on personally owned and/or home computers.

Upgrades

Software versions rendered obsolete by virtue of upgrade may not be used after the upgrade has been performed, except only as may be permitted under the applicable software license.

Illegal Software

Software found to be obtained and/or used contrary to the policies of the university, must be removed from any computer on which it is found.

Compliance Audit

Sanctions for Non-Compliance with Software Licensing Policy: Non-compliance may result in termination of relationship with the university. Violators may also be subject to civil and/or criminal penalties.

 

See also the Northeastern University Appropriate Use Policy (AUP).