For all learners on Learn Devon programmes.

This document applies to the use of computers, mobile phones and related equipment, regardless of ownership, where they:

  •  are used on premises for which Learn Devon has responsibility.


  • use an Internet or other network connection for which Learn Devon has responsibility.

For security reasons, use of the Internet and e-mail services provided by Learn Devon may be recorded by Learn Devon. This may include details of sites visited and addresses of emails sent. However, Learn Devon will not monitor details entered into secure web pages, or the content of e-mails where provided by another Internet Service Provider.

Privacy and confidentiality: Because equipment may be used by several different people, Learn Devon cannot guarantee the privacy of personal data, including e-mails. It is the responsibility of users to ensure they correctly log out of any websites, e-mail packages or other programs before leaving the computer.

Acceptable use

Learn Devon learners and staff may use Learn Devon equipment for legitimate activities related to a learning programme run by, or for, Learn Devon. These activities must be within the law and must not be prohibited elsewhere in this policy.

Prevent Duty

There is a duty on authorities under the Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015 to have due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism.

Terrorist organisations, such as ISIL, are trying to radicalise and recruit young people through extensive use of social media and the internet. Young people, some as young as 14, have tried to leave the UK to travel to join ISIL and other terrorist groups in Syria and Iraq.

As with other online harms, every tutor needs to be aware of the risks posed by the online activity of extremist and terrorist groups.

Learn Devon has a vital role to play in protecting its learners from the risks of extremism and radicalisation. Keeping learners safe from risks posed by terrorist exploitation of social media will be approached in the same way as safeguarding learners from any other online abuse.

If you have a concern for the safety of a learner at risk of radicalisation, you should follow Learn Devon’s safeguarding procedures, including discussing your concerns with Learn Devon’s designated safeguarding advocates.

Prohibited use


You must not:

1. View, download, store, print, create, access, or in any way circulate, items considered indecent, offensive, pornographic, defamatory, threatening, discriminatory or illegal.

2. Download or install software of any sort on Learn Devon computers or equipment.

3. Download or circulate data including software, music and videos, in contravention of copyright and intellectual property laws.

4. Knowingly introduce or circulate a virus or other form of malware, or attempt to access other computers or networks illegally or without permission.

5. Damage or attempt to damage any equipment or facilities.

6. Store or post anywhere, images or videos of individuals, without their prior consent.

7. Store or post anywhere, images or videos that include children or vulnerable individuals, where they can be identified by name, however indirectly that might be obtained.

8. Knowingly pose as someone else, including signing-in, or attempting to sign-in, to any account held by anyone else.

9. Disclose to anyone else any password given to you by Learn Devon.

E-mail, social media and Office 365 / Class Notebook

You must not:

1. Send by e-mail, post on the Internet, or in any other way, circulate items, that may be considered offensive, threatening, pornographic or illegal.

2. Send e-mail or any other message to any user who does not wish to receive it.

3. Send multiple unsolicited emails (‘spam’) or start or pass-on any chain mail.

4. Use e-mail, Internet postings, or any other means, to threaten, harass or incite illegal behaviour.

Illegal activities

By law, you must not:

1. View, read, download, upload, distribute or circulate material, which includes child-abuse images, incitement to violence, race hate or extreme pornography.

2. Publish or disclose information about individuals without their prior consent, unless this information has been released into the public domain by the individual, or is required by law to be made public.

3. Publish information about individuals or organisations that is inaccurate or untrue, irrelevant, out-of-date, or is intended to damage them, or to hold them up to ridicule, hatred or contempt.

4. You must not create, download, store or transmit unlawful material, or material that is indecent, offensive, defamatory, threatening or discriminatory.


Reporting incidents

Reporting accidental access to inappropriate material

If, whilst using Learn Devon equipment, you accidentally come across material that you think is inappropriate, offensive or may be illegal, you must:

1. Close the webpage, e-mail, or other viewing software, so that the material is no longer visible. If the material includes sound, make sure this stops as well.

2. Report the incident to a member of Learn Devon staff as soon as possible.

3. Make a brief written note of the incident including the web address, email details or other means by which you came across the material – do this only if you can do so without accessing the material again. Include the time, date, and the identity of the computer you used.

4. Give a copy of this information to the member of staff – this will help with any further investigation and also ensure that you are not held responsible.

5. Ask the member of staff to record the details and to then immediately pass them on to the relevant person as determined by the Learn Devon Health and Safety Policy.

6. If you think the material may be illegal due to its content, do not look at it again, or show it to anyone, or print it, or investigate it further, or forward it or circulate it in any way. For illegal materials this would be a criminal offence.

Reporting abuse or misuse

If you think that you or someone else may be the subject of abuse, threats, intimidation or other inappropriate or illegal activity, you must report this to a member of Learn Devon staff as soon as possible. Ask the member of staff to record the details and to then immediately pass them on to the relevant person as determined by the Learn Devon Safeguarding and Prevent policy.

If you think that someone else may be misusing the equipment, either knowingly or unknowingly, or may be contravening any of the points in this Policy document, you must report this to a member of Learn Devon staff as soon as possible.


Any user found to be knowingly violating this Acceptable use policy may be excluded from Learn Devon websites, use of learning forums e-mail systems and other facilities. If warranted, the individual may also be removed from all Learn Devon learning programmes. The normal Learn Devon appeals policy will apply. In addition, any use that is in contravention of the law will be reported to the appropriate authorities for further investigation.

* General note to staff: All incidents, or suspected incidents, involving young or vulnerable learners must be handled by the procedures Learn Devon Safeguarding and Prevent Guidance for Staff or Learn Devon Safeguarding and Prevent Policy

Portable storage media and portable devices

Disclaimer: Although Learn Devon uses robust and up-to-date anti-virus and firewall software, we cannot guarantee that learners’ portable storage media, (such as USB flash drives and SD cards), or portable devices, (such as mobile ‘phones and tablets), will not be infected with a virus.

Learn Devon will not be held responsible for the deletion or corruption of files, software or firmware, held on portable storage media or devices.

This applies to learners’ own portable storage media and devices and to those provided by Learn Devon.

Office 365 and Class Notebook

Learn Devon provides each learner with an Office 365 account as part of the learning experience. This account is provided free of charge at the point of commencement of the first programme of learning, where learners are enrolling directly onto a course delivered by Learn Devon staff. The account and its content remain the property of Learn Devon throughout the life of the programme of learning.

Each learner shall be provided with an individual account and unique sign-in. The learner is responsible for ensuring that the security of the account is maintained through effective management of passwords.

Use of the account must comply with the principles referred to in this policy on acceptable use and misuse subject to the sanctions. Additionally, access to the account is subject to investigation as part of any Safeguarding or PREVENT investigation and may be blocked as part of this investigation.

Each user’s account shall be closed two years after the last date of learning has taken place. It is the responsibility of learners to ensure that they transfer any materials they wish to retain to other media.