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Using Email

Most staff working at the University have a need to use email in their daily work.  The following page will provide you with information on the way in which email should be used.

Sending emails

Email is one of the easiest ways of communicating with people, however, when using email care should be taken.  The following steps should help reduce the chance of email being the source of a data breach.

  • Always double check the recipients included in your email, it is easy for a stray address to be included when selecting from a drop down list.
  • Always ensure that when sending an email to multiple recipients (such as multiple students) please use the bcc field, this allows the email to be sent to many individuals, without disclosing the email addresses of the recipients to other recipients.
  • When sending personal information by email consider if the information needs to be sent, and also think about whether the information being sent is proportionate to need.  Always remove excess personal information from emails and attachments prior to sending.
  • When sending information by attachment, consider the use of encryption.  Encryption prevents those who shouldn't have access to the attachment seeing what is in the attachment.  Using password protection in Microsoft Office 2007 and newer versions does encrypt the attachment being sent.
  • If the exchange of email between you and the recipient is regular, consider setting up a shared location within the shared drives which you both have access to.  Instead of emailing, drop the information into the folder and insead of mailing the attachment, mail the link to the relevant folder within the drive.

If you happen to send information to someone who should not have access to it then please use the Data Breach Report Form to report it to a member of the IG Team.

 

 

Receiving email

Email is one of the easiest way of a hacker gaining access to your information and in doing so potentially gaining information held by the University.  The University does filter out millions of nefarious emails every years, however as hackers become more aware of the controls in place, their ability to counter these controls also improves.  Always be vigilant when opening emails.  These simple steps should help keep you safe when receiving emails.

  • Hackers often send emails with offers that are 'too good to be true'. If you receive one of these please forward it to spam@sunderland.ac.uk and delete it from your inbox and your deleted items.
  • Hackers often send emails from someone you trust, either by hacking their account or by making it appear to come from your trusted contact.  If you receive an unusual email from someone you know, please check with them prior to opening it.  If it is found this email is genuine, continue as you normally would.  If this email has not been sent by the named sender, please forward the email to spam@sunderland.ac.uk and delete it from your inbox and your deleted items.
  • If you receive information by email which you need to keep, please save the email and any attachment (details found in the section below) and once you have done so please delete the original email.  Once you have saved a copy into the correct location in the shared drive there is no need to retain it in your email account.

Storing Information

Email addresses and the associated accounts are provided to all staff at the University of Sunderland.  This account is provided to you in order for you to communicate with others both within and outside of the University.  One of the key compontents of using email is knowing when emails should be retained and when they should be deleted.

If you receive an email in the course of your work which is, or contains, a record needing to be retained you should retain the email, but importantly not in your email account. Follwing the simple steps below you can save the email to an appropriate location using a durable format:  

  • Select the email you wish to retain;
  • Convert it to a pdf using the controls available in the action bar;
  • Select an appropriate area of the shared drive to save the pdf;
  • Once saved, delete the original email.

If you receive an email which is for information only, please retain the email until it is no longer of use to you.  When the email ceases to be of use please delete it.

All users should plan a periodic email cleanse, this cleanse should include junk and deleted folders, which are often forgotten locations.

If you would like technical assistance regarding the use of email please use the IT Support Portal.

If you would like advice on storage of emails or with a periodic cleanse then please contact a member of the IG team on recman@sunderland.ac.uk.