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IT Laws for Internet content monitoring

Posted on 2006-11-01
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Last Modified: 2013-12-04
Does anyone know a site that lays out U.S. Federal laws for IT Admins?  I am looking for what my responsibilities are if I suspect someone is doing something illegal over my network.
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Question by:millers55
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Rich Rumble earned 1000 total points
ID: 17849656
Local laws apply as well as employer company policies , and local laws of the victim. When the offense is from out of your country it's a bit harder to enforce or get cooperation from those gov'ts. You should inquire with HR about the proper procedure, if it's HR that is suspect you need to go higher VP, CTO, CIO, CFO. HR or whomever should contact local law enforcement if this breaks local or federal laws. If you don't have company policies have a look here: http://www.sans.org/resources/policies/
-rich
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by:Phil_Agcaoili
Phil_Agcaoili earned 1000 total points
ID: 18685550
I'll be as direct as possible answering your quite open (surprisingly) question--"I am looking for what my responsibilities are if I suspect someone is doing something illegal over my network."

It depends on the "illegal" activity that you believe that is going on...

For example:
- Child pornography has specific laws both in the real world and in the digital world.
- Selling perscription drugs in the physical world without a perscription is illegal, while selling them online internationally is not illegal.
- Buying and selling counterfeit merchandise in the physical world is illegal, while the same activity on the online world is not illegal.

What activity is going on and in what country and state are you in?

To cover the broad-range of questionable and possibly illegal activity and cover a company for liability's sake, most companies employ an Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) to alert users that corporate networks are monitored and define what acceptable behavior is on the network. For example:
http://www.csoonline.com/read/090105/keystroke_3827.html
http://www.csoonline.com/fundamentals/abc_surveillance.html

Here's an example AUP from a Webhosting company that is trying to protect itself from "bad" customers who perform illegal activities on their websites: http://www.ait.com/acceptableusepolicy.php
So what this AUP states is that the hosting company can kill any website that they deem is illegal...notice no definition of what "illegal" means on the AUP.  At any time, a charge can be raised by ANYONE against any website hosted by this company and they have the right to shutdown the site.  

Follow?

There is no ONE government Website on illegal Internet activity.

If you give us an idea of what the activity is and your location, we can better answer your question, but to be honest if you establish good policies, your legal team (you not have one) can easily defend any actions that you make on YOUR network that you do not agree with, including monitoring people for unacceptable use of your network.

Hope this helped.
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