How to Report Abuse
If you are in imminent physical danger or have been injured call 911 for help immediately.
If it is a non-emergency and you believe you are the victim of a crime you may contact the Department of Safety at (303)871-2334.
If the abuse involves e-mail, please see the guidelines below.
Please report all other computing and network abuse to Information Security by using the form.
E-Abuse and What to Do About It
What is e-abuse?
We define electronic abuse, or e-abuse, to be the improper or unlawful use of computers or the network to cause harm or loss to others. E-abuse can take many forms:
- Denial of Service attack (DoS) – Using computer and networking resources to prevent access to the rightful users of those resources. Flooding the Inbox of a particular user with useless or repetitive e-mail (a mail-bomb in nerd parlance) is an example of a DoS attack. Using computing or network resources to irritate or torment another person is a form of harassment. Sending unwanted or threatening messages to someone is an example.
- Theft -- Using computers or the network to steal information is theft. Making copyrighted material available on the network without proper permission is an example of theft. So is circumventing security to download private information without appropriate authorization.
- Invasion of Privacy – Snooping on networks or examining someone's computer or computer account to find and read private information is a violation of privacy.
- Vandalism – Making use of computers or the network to modify information owned by others is vandalism. Defacing a web site is an example of vandalism.
Guidelines for Reporting Abusive Electronic Communications
Determine if a message is annoying, offensive, harassing or threatening
Determining if a message is annoying, offensive, harassing or threatening depends on how you feel about it. Things to consider include: what was said, how it was said, who said it, the context of what has been said, and how you perceive the other person's intent.
Reporting harassing or threatening communications
An important thing to remember is that as long as the exchange is electronic, you are in control. If the harassment moves beyond that, contact DU's Department of Safety immediately.
Do not respond to harassing or threatening messages.
If you received the message on a connection to the University of Denver network or you have reason to believe that the message came from the University of Denver network, you may use Abuse Report Form to report harassing and threatening messages sent by some means other than e-mail. Save any session logs or other information that may help identify the sender.
DO NOT delete harassing or threatening e-mail messages. E-Mail messages contain headers which are not displayed by most e-mail programs. Because headers contain information that may help identify the sender, it is imperative to preserve the entire message, including message headers.
Report harassing or threatening e-mail by forwarding the complete message, including message headers, to firstname.lastname@example.org. Your mail program may have to be configured to do so. Information about how to include message headers with mail forwarded by many programs is available from spamcop.net.
Dealing with offensive messages
You may able to configure your software of service to ignore future messages from the sender. You can use the IT E-Mail Account Manager to set up e-mail filtering for your @du.edu e-mail account.
In some cases, it may be appropriate to treat offensive e-mail as harassing or threatening.
Often offensive messages are unsolicited bulk e-mail or spam. Please see our Spam Page, for additional information and suggestions.
Dealing with annoying messages
Often annoying messages are unsolicited bulk e-mail or spam. Sometimes these messages attempt to entice you to participate in a money-making scheme that is too good to be true or verify your identity for a bank or other financial institution. Do not respond to these messages! Please see our Spam Page and Scams Page for additional information and suggestions.
Some computer viruses send repeated and annoying messages from forged addresses. Please see our Virus Page for additional information.
If you find other messages annoying, you have several choices. Think before you act. Even with instant messaging, you have time to weigh your response. Have you misinterpreted an innocent remark? Could the other person have misunderstood something you said? Is the other person aware you are annoyed? Is the other person trying to bait you simply to get a response? Would your response be likely to discourage the person from continuing to annoy you? Would it be best not to respond at all?
You may be able to configure your software of service to ignore future messages from the sender. You can use the IT E-Mail Account Manager to set up e-mail filtering for your @du.edu e-mail account.
Sometimes it is appropriate to report annoying messages as harassing or threatening.