The IT Policy - Why do we need one and what should it contain ?
Many, many years ago, in fact December 25th 1981, I got my first computer, a joint
Christmas present with my Brother. My first computer was a Sinclair ZX81 with 1k ram,
we later purchased a 16k expansion pack and a sound-card and spent many long hours
programming it, reading the 'full' manual (RTFM;) and if things went wrong or the
program we had just spent all day working on crashed we had no IT help line to ring, we
just had to sort it out ourselves. My Brother and I have been 'into computers' ever
since, but why mention this ? Back then we thought the future held many innovations
and a shiney new world where computers ...view middle of the document...
Remove the risk,
manage the risk, protect against any risk (remove, prevent, reduce).
What are the objectives of our IT Policy ?
To protect the company’s data from loss, damage or unauthorised access:
We have two main systems, our main-frame which contains all our sales ordering,
accounts and supply data and the staffs Personal Computer (PC) containing their email,
letters and sales quotes and other personal bits and pieces. All of this needs to be
protected from loss or damage, so each day the main-frame is backed-up and a copy
taken off site (insurance company request) and the PC's are backed up weekly, remote
users back their PC's as and when required. We also need to protect ourselves from
unauthorised access so our main-frame and PC's are behind a firewall which prevents
unauthorised access to our systems yet still allows our external sales staff and remote
site to 'dial-in'.
To prevent the company’s computer resources being used for activities which are illegal
or which violate any other policies, provisions, guidelines or standards of the company:
Due to the nature of our business and our customer base we allow all of our PC's have
access to the internet, from the sales staff looking online for that specialised widget our
customer requires to the warehouse booking their deliveries using our carriers website.
As they are all online all the time some people may choose to use them for 'other'
activities such as playing on Facebook to surfing for images that could end up with you
serving time at Her Majesty’s pleasure. To stop our staff accessing these we have
blocking software that prevents them looking at sites deemed as inappropriate during
their time at work.
To prevent damage to, or degradation of, the company’s computer resources:
Whilst PC's have come down in price (my first PC cost £800, now there are in the region
of £200 each) and with an estimated fifty PC's on site there is a great deal of capital tied
up in computers and ancillary products / peripherals. We employ an outside firm to
come in twice a year to clean the PC's, Monitors and other desk hardware and, at