Policy 921 - Security Awareness and Training Policy

Section: Information Technology
Policy Number: 921
Responsible Office: Information Technology
Effective Date: 5/1/19
Revised: 5/1/19; 6/11/20

Policy Statement

The St. John’s University’s (St. John’s) information security awareness, training and education program strives to ensure that the University community achieves and maintains at least a basic level of understanding of information security matters, such as general obligations under various information security policies, standards, procedures, laws, regulations, contractual terms and generally held standards of ethics and acceptable use of information resources. 

Security awareness and training activities are initiated as soon as practical after faculty, staff and/or a student worker has been employed. The awareness activities are conducted on a continuous basis thereafter in order to maintain a reasonably consistent level of awareness. 

Scope and Applicability

This policy applies to the University Community. Adherence to this policy helps safeguard the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of St. John’s information assets, and protects the interest of St. John’s, its customers, personnel, and business partners.


All authorized users with access to Institutional Data and Computing Resources receive sufficient training to allow them to protect Institutional Data and Computing Resources adequately. 

Additional and specific training are required for personnel with responsibilities related to programming, administering, and securing systems and for specific University community members with access to Protected Data or Privacy information in accordance with compliance laws and regulations. Appropriate security training is completed before access is granted to St. John’s Computing Resources.

The IT Department and the Human Resources Department are responsible for developing and maintaining a program and provide:

  • Initial and ongoing security awareness training on acceptable use of IT resources to the University community.
  • Proper information security training as related to functional responsibilities.
  • Educational opportunities to ensure information security personnel are equipped with the necessary security skills, knowledge, and competencies.
  • All employees’ acknowledgement in writing that they have read and understood St. John’s Information Security Policy. 
  • Awareness of cardholder data security.
  • Information security training that is incorporated into the new hire and new contractor orientation processes.  Access to systems may not be provided until training is completed and a signed acknowledgment of security training has been received by the IT Department.
  • Annual information security awareness refresher training that must be completed by all administrators, faculty, staff, student workers and authorized users.
  • Specialized security training applicable to their functions for information system security personnel with responsibilities related to administering and securing systems.  Acknowledgment of having received specialized security training must be submitted to the unit Director within the IT Department before administrative access can be given to any St. John’s systems.


The following are definitions relevant to the policy:

  • Security Awareness: The knowledge and attitude members of an organization possess regarding the protection of the physical, and especially informational, assets of that organization. 
  • Computing Resources: All St. John’s information processing resources including all St. John’s owned, licensed, or managed computing services, hardware, software, and use of St. John’s network via physical or wireless connection regardless of the ownership of the computer or device connected to the network.
  • Institutional Data: All data owned or licensed by St. John’s.
  • University Community: Includes faculty, administrators, staff, student workers, graduate/technical assistants, alumni, interns, guests or agents of the administration, external individuals and organizations accessing St. John’s network services, and other authorized users.


St. John’s reserves the right to audit networks and systems on a periodic basis to ensure compliance with this policy. Instances of non-compliance must be presented to, reviewed, and approved by the CIO, the Director of Information Security, or the equivalent officer(s).

All breaches of information security, actual or suspected, must be reported to, and investigated by the CIO and the Director of Information Security. 

Those who violate security policies, standards, or security procedures are subject to disciplinary action up to and including loss of computer access and appropriate disciplinary actions as determined by St. John’s.