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Compliance with legislation

3. Compliance with legislation

All users of Trinity's web resources must comply with national and international legislation in all respects (www.tcd.ie/about/legislation/summary/) Particular attention is drawn to the following:

3.1 Trinity website aims to be accessible to all users including people with disabilities for whom the internet can be a very valuable communication and information tool. Technical tools are constantly being developed and refined which convert text on web pages to the spoken word and thereby make information accessible to people with disabilities, particularly those with visual impairment and reading difficulties. The degree to which web pages are accessible to users with disabilities is defined in terms of priority levels (Web Accessibility Initiative - WAI) and all new websites within Trinity website are required to be universally accessible at priority levels 1 and 2 except in very exceptional circumstances. Those responsible for existing Trinity websites will be encouraged to make the changes necessary to achieve accessibility at this minimum level. It is strongly recommended that websites should be developed with a view to achieving accessibility at priority level 3.

3.2 Child Trafficking and Pornography Act 1998 It is an offence to knowingly produce, distribute, print or publish child pornography and to knowingly import, export, sell, show or advertise child pornography cause or facilitate, or encourage, any of these activities be in possession of any child pornography. The provisions of this Act cover the storing, viewing or distribution of child pornography on any computer system.

Persons found guilty of any of the above offences are liable to a fine and/or prison sentence. Any staff or student member of Trinity found to be in breach of the provisions of this Act shall be immediately reported to the Gardaí.

3.3 Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003

In order to comply with the provisions of the Data Protection Acts (See below.), the use of any forms or email addresses to request personal information must inform the website visitor of:

  • the identity of who is collecting the data, which should include contact information;
  • the purpose, or purposes, in collecting the data;
  • the persons or categories of persons to whom the data may be disclosed; and
  • any other information which is necessary so that processing the data may be fair, such as informing users which information is mandatory and which optional and any particular implications for them in providing the information being sought and their right to access and rectify the data; and
  • it is good practice to inform the users of the period for which the data will be kept.

A commitment must be given that the personal information so collected will only be used for the purposes that it was given and that it will not be released to other parties without the permission of the individual, except as permitted by law. Only required information should be collected and care should be taken not to seek information that is unnecessary for the purpose. Subsequent use of the personal data must conform to the information provided to the user. Any use not disclosed when the information was collected will require further consent, except as permitted by law.

Data should be held only for as long as needed for the purpose for which they were collected and should then be deleted in a secure manner. Whilst the data are retained they should be stored securely and backed-up as appropriate.

The Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003 apply to the acquisition, storage and processing of personal information, i.e. information about an identifiable living person. All those handling personal information have duties under the Acts to:

  • obtain and process information fairly;
  • keep it only for one or more specified, explicit and lawful purposes; • use and disclose it only in ways compatible with these purposes;
  • keep it safe and secure;
  • keep it accurate, complete and up-to-date;
  • ensure that it is adequate, relevant and not excessive;
  • retain it for no longer than is necessary for the purpose or purposes; and
  • give a copy of his/her personal data to that individual, on request.

Further information on data protection is available from the website of the Data Protection Commissioner, which includes an informal consolidated version of the Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003, or from Trinity's Information Compliance Officer [data.protection@tcd.ie].

Users must also comply with the following, which may be viewed on the Commissioner's website:

  • EU Directive 95/46/EC – the Data Protection Directive;
  • EU Directive 97/66/EC – the Telecommunications Directive;
  • EU Directive 2002/58/EC – the e-Commerce Directive; and
  • Regulations under the Data Protection Act, 1988.

3.3 Copyright and Related Rights Act 2000 All web pages should comply with the provisions of the Copyright and Related Rights Act 2000 and should not unlawfully reproduce and make available to the public any work in which copyright subsists and for which no licensing arrangements have been put in place. Material published on Trinity's locally-accessible web pages is considered to be publicly available for the purposes of the Act.

Works in which copyright subsists include:

  • Original literary, dramatic, musical or artistic works
  • Sound recordings, films, broadcasts or cable programmes
  • Typographical arrangement of published editions
  • Original databases

The application of the Act for educational purposes is currently being developed and will be incorporated into this policy in due course.