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Email & Harassment Policies

Email & Harassment Policies

As we become more globally connected, Northwest is committed to ensuring efficient management and security of all campus technology resources to ensure the University's strategic goals for student success.  All individuals using Northwest-provided technology resources and accounts are required to support and abide by campus technology policies.

You, Northwest Technology, Mass Mail & Harassment

Northwest provides email service through Microsoft Office 365 to all its student, faculty, staff and University-approved organizations.

While email accounts are not routinely monitored, email accounts are subject to examination by the University and law enforcement authorities when:

  • It is necessary to maintain or improve network functioning.
  • There is suspicion of misconduct under campus policies or local, state or federal laws.
  • It is necessary to comply with any local, state or federal law, including litigation discovery procedures.
  • It will serve the legitimate business needs of the University.

Your Northwest Email Account is not forever, particularly if you abuse it!

As a student, faculty, staff or organization affiliated with the University, you are required to comply with all campus policies and local, state and federal laws. Any use of the campus network or campus email services that violates Northwest policies or local, state or federal law is prohibited. Northwest reserves the right to terminate the network/email privileges of any user who does not adhere to policy.

Northwest students get to keep their Northwest Network Account login credentials, which allows access to Northwest Email, for one full year after withdrawing or graduating from the University.  The exception to this rule is for students who are expelled from the University due to disciplinary action.

Northwest faculty and staff accounts are immediately locked after their last shift or after 5 p.m. on the last full day of scheduled work.

Disclaimer: Although the local, state and federal criminal statutes and legal consequences (e.g. fines, jail time, etc.) found within Northwest's technology policies sections have been produced and processed from legitimate government and pertinent legal/educational sources believed to be reliable, no warranty expressed or implied is made by Northwest regarding completeness or precision of the content.


You, Northwest Technology & Mass Mail

Never reply to phishing emails, even to ask the sender to stop! 

Instead, report the phishing email to the Northwest Technology Service Center (NTSC) at or 660.562.1634.  NTSC may request that you copy the headers or forward the message to them if it is a message that is new to their knowledge base.  Do not click on any links in the email!  Once reported, delete the message!

Learn more about Phishing!

Mass email is restricted to email that is relevant to official University business, Northwest’s mission and a significant segment of the campus community. Any form of solicitation is prohibited.

If a campus user continues to receive unwanted mass mail despite requests for the sender to stop, the user may report the email abuse to the Northwest Technology Service Center.  

Mass email publicizing events such as bake sales, dances and dinners where commercial activities may occur or tickets must be purchased are not appropriate content for a mass email. Such events should instead be advertised via social media such as Twitter or Facebook, etc., or submitted to Northwest News, the Northwest Missourian or other similar online or printed service.

Mass email is only appropriate when approved by the proper university office or there is an emergency or crisis affecting or having the potential to affect the entire campus community such as:

  • Closing or delays due to hazardous weather
  • The need to provide special help to students, faculty or staff.
  • Crimes that threaten public safety or terrorist activity.
  • Sudden changes in traffic, campus access, and parking.
  • Planned or sudden disruption of significant computer network features and power outages.
  • Planned or sudden disruption of telephone, electrical or water services.
  • Emergency and time-sensitive situations such as the outbreak of an illness.
  • The death of a member of our “Bearcat Family” (such as faculty or staff ) whose absence affects a significant portion of the campus community.
  • Special services or events held in connection with the death of a member of our “Bearcat Family” that are not fundraisers.

Obtaining Mass Mail Approval

Mass email messages cannot be sent using an individual department or organization’s email address. Nor can faculty, staff or students use the Northwest network or their campus email address to send mass mail to other users.  Mass email will only be approved by University Marketing and Communication or Student Affairs if the mass email request originates from a department, division, school administration or organizational sponsor.  Mass email requests from lower-level units will be denied.

Disclaimers on emails do not exclude them from being considered mass mail.  Mass mail must be approved by the appropriate office and include that approval at the top or bottom of the email message.   

Everyone must submit message requests (a copy of the intended message must also be presented at the time of the request) through the appropriate university office.  Appropriate university offices to approach for approval of a mass mailing are:

  • Mass mail to faculty & staff: University Marketing and Communication
  • Mass mail to students: Student Affairs

The appropriate office will keep a copy of the approved email on file.  All approved mass mail messages will be sent out as an official University Marketing & Communication communication such as Northwest News and not from individual, organizational or departmental accounts.   Exceptions to this rule are:  Any official email generated from University Marketing and Communication Northwest News and Information, the President’s Office, the Provost's Office or University Police. 

Example(s) of the Process:

  • If Student Affairs approves a message for a mass mailing, Student Affairs will turn the message over to University Marketing & Communication. University Marketing & Communication will work with Student Affairs to disseminate the approved mass mailing to students via an official email. In turn, Student Affairs will keep a copy of the message they approved for mass mail on file for record-keeping purposes.
  • If University of Marketing & Communication approves a message for a mass mailing to faculty and staff, the University of Marketing & Communication will keep the message on file and disseminate the approved mass mailing via an official Northwest news communication.

Also, allowed—but using a listserv is recommended if at all possible—are:

  • Faculty sending messages to students enrolled in the their classes.
  • Supervisors sending messages to staff.
  • Organization sending messages to its membership.  

If your message falls into this category of allowed emails, but you are emailing well over 200 students, please consider putting the following in your email message to encourage others to view and follow Northwest's Mass Mail Policy:  This email message adheres to Northwest’s Mass Mail Policy.  Please see that policy if you are considering sending mass mail.

What is a listserv?

  • Distributes messages to subscribers on an electronic mailing list..

Who is eligible for a listserv & how do I get one?

  • University-sponsored organizations.
  • Academic and administrative departments.
  • Faculty and staff for University work-related purposes.
  • Individual students are not eligible for a listserv.

Once a listserv has been created, the owner of the account may grant membership to desired users by having them subscribe to their list.  To request a mailing list, email the Northwest Technology Service Center at

You, Northwest Technology & Harassment

Harassment is not tolerated at Northwest!

Harassment and intimidation of individuals via email on the basis of political affiliation, race, gender,  gender identity, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or disability is strictly prohibited.

Harassing is defined as repeated unwanted attention.  This does not include chain letters or unsolicited mass mailings.  Use of campus email to harass others will result in disciplinary action through the Student Faculty Discipline Committee and/or legal action through University Police.

If you are the recipient of harassing email, it is important to:

  • Keep copies of these messages in your Inbox!
  • Do not delete the harassing message or  messages!
  • Copies of the messages will be needed as evidence for the violation!

Harassment complaints received from outside sources with evidence that shows a Northwest user violated University policy and/or local, state or federal law will be handled in the same manner as a violation that happened on campus.

Report all harassing email messages (this also includes harassment via social media) to University Police at 660.562.1254, including all threats to persons and property.

If you are the victim of harassment, you are strongly encouraged to talk not only to University Police, but to Northwest’s counselors at the University Wellness Center at 660.562.1348.  The University Wellness Center’s experienced counselors can provide you with invaluable crisis support and will keep your personal details confidential.

If you are not sure about whether or not an email or emails (or social media posts) constitute harassment and don’t want to contact University Police before discussing your situation, you can contact the Northwest Technology Service Center at 660.562.1634 or the Office of Student Involvement at 660.562.1226 for guidance on the matter.

You, Northwest Technology & Prohibited Emails

The following are types of Northwest email policy violations:

  • Creating, forwarding or spreading phishing emails or chain letters. 
    • Phishing is a term used to identify criminal activity on the Internet.  Phishing is the use of bogus (forged/fake) emails that claim to be from a company that you may trust.
    • A chain message is any message that urges recipients to pass its contents along to others.
  • Mail-bombing other systems or users
    • Mail-bombing is defined as sending or urging others to send a large amount of email messages to a mail server or an individual’s mailbox with intent to crash the server, fill the user’s mailbox or harass the recipient.
  • Sending email from Northwest servers for commercial purposes (advertising and/or selling products for profit or personal financial gain).
  • Using the Northwest network and it’s online services to send, post, or display offensive or abusive email messages.
    • Such messages include any text, graphic or image that would be considered by the recipient to be slanderous, vulgar, or defamatory.
  • Falsifying a sender’s identity or misleading a sender into believing you are someone else.
    • While anonymous messages are not illegal, deliberately posing as someone else is illegal. Therefore, communications should always reflect a senders true identity.
  • Sending email messages via a mailing list (listserv or distribution list) that does not follow the intended purpose of the mailing list. 
    • Subscribers to a mailing list expect to receive relevant messages that pertain to a class, department or organization. Avoid sending messages that have nothing to do with the list’s purpose.

Any Questions?



              Beware of Phishing