Clare College Cambridge

Network Rules and Penalties

- Preface
- Notes
- College Rules
- University Regulations
- Penalties


Use of the College network is subject to the College rules and University regulations set out below. Our aim is to provide a useful network facility while preventing misuse.


1. It is illegal to download, use or re-distribute unlicensed copies of copyright material, such as music, films, or computer programs. If you do this, you will be personally liable for prosecution. The College and University are also liable for prosecution if they allow their networks or computers to be used in this way. For that reason, such activities are strictly prohibited, as set out in rules 5 and 10 below.

2. The University is charged a fee by JANET for its connection to the internet, and distributes this amongst Colleges and Departments in proportion to the traffic they generate. Clare College expects to pay about 2% of this charge. Individuals whose internet usage takes us significantly above this target will be investigated and could receive an additional charge.

College Rules

1. The good name of Clare College shall not be brought into disrepute.

2. High-bandwidth applications (such as streaming audio, streaming video, internet phone/video conferencing, Real Player, QuickTime audio/video, Microsoft Media Player, Net Meeting and so on) must only be used sparingly, as they increase network traffic charges for the College. Individuals who generate high levels of traffic will be contacted; those who do not respond may face additional charges or disconnection.

3. VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) telephony programs are allowed, but we ask you to use programs such as MSN Messenger and OpenWengo, rather than Skype. Skype is able to divert other commercial internet traffic through the College network even when you are not making a call, which costs us money and can overload our router. If you have to use Skype, it must be configured not to start up when your computer starts, and should be shut down when you have finished using it.

4. It is forbidden to download, use or re-distribute copies of copyright material unless the user is in possession of a valid licence to do so.

5. It is forbidden to run any ‘peer-to-peer’ or ‘file-sharing’ software such as BitTorrent, Limewire, EMule, GNUtella, Direct Connect or CamDC without prior permission.  As well as being the main route for illegally downloading and re-distributing copyright material (see note 1 and rule 4 above), these programs can generate large quantities of chargeable internet traffic and can adversely affect the performance of our network.

6. You must not send emails or post news articles which appear to come from somebody else or from a fictitious address.

7. You must only use the IP number(s) issued by the College. No 'spoofing', or attempts to use other IP numbers, is permitted.

8. Routing equipment must not be connected to the network. Ethernet hubs and switches may be used with prior approval from the IT Department.

9. Wireless Access Points/Routers are not allowed to be connected to the network. These can present a security risk and can interfere with the College’s network and Wireless Hotspots.

10. The regulations set out in Authorization for Use of the CUDN (Cambridge University Data Network) must be observed. In particular, these regulations forbid the use of the network for any illegal, defamatory, or indecent purpose.

The remainder of these rules are mainly applicable to computer experts:

11. Any user who wishes to run a web server must first register their machine with the IT Department and agree to the additional rules which will apply.

12. Only the DNS name issued by the College shall be used. Users are not permitted to register their IP number with other DNS names or aliases.

13. Promiscuous mode reception or any other form of network traffic monitoring is forbidden.

14. User machines are forbidden to saturate the network by emitting an unreasonably high frequency of packets, or to attempt any other form of denial of service to others.

15. Sending email from an account using a client (such as Outlook or Thunderbird) may only be done via official SMTP mail servers in the domain. These are Hermes, or the smart host Look here for more information.

16. Inward e-mail to private SMTP servers is not permitted.

17. Private NNTP (news) servers are not permitted.

18. IP packet forwarding is forbidden (note that you might have to explicitly turn off IP forwarding with some versions of Linux).

19. Where a user machine offers an allowed service to the network, the service must comply with relevant acceptable use policies. For instance, if a Telnet service is offered, it must not offer resources outside the domain unless the usage complies with the Janet Acceptable Use Policy and Information Technology Syndicate rules.

University Regulations

The University regulations which regulate the use of the CUDN (whether from College or elsewhere) are as follows:

a) Rules made by the IT Syndicate of the University of Cambridge

b) Use and Misuse of Computing Facilities

c) Rules relating to the use of IP addresses in the University of Cambridge

d) Authorization for Use of the CUDN (as mentioned in rule 10 above)

e) The JANET Acceptable Use Policy

f) Guidelines for World Wide Web Information Providers in the University of Cambridge


The penalties for breaking these rules include fines and/or permanent disconnection without refund of subscription, and will depend on the severity of the breach. As a guide, the standard penalty for breach of copyright rules (see rule 5) is two terms-worth of charges as a fine, and eight weeks of term-time disconnection (plus the whole of any vacation during that period).

The IT Department hopes to resolve any rule infringements through contact with the person involved before taking any direct action. We, however, reserve the right to disconnect without warning if we receive notification that your machine has downloaded or uploaded copyright material, if you are found to be generating unreasonably large amounts of internet traffic, or if your machine appears to be causing a network problem.