The University of Texas home page
UTPD logo
Title Administration / Policy B-33
Effective Date 6-08-11
Subject Social Media and Networking
Purpose To establish policy regarding social media.
Scope This directive applies to all personnel.

Statement of Purpose:

The University of Texas at Austin Police Department endorses the secure use of social media to enhance communication, collaboration, and information exchange. This policy provides guidance on the management, administration and oversight of social media. This policy is not meant to address one particular form of social media; rather social media in general, as advances in technology will occur and new tools will emerge.

  1. Departmental— Sanctioned Use:
    1. Departmental staff assigned to monitor post and respond to The University of Texas Police Department social media network sites.
    2. Officers are encouraged to use social media as an investigative tool when seeking evidence or information about current cases.
    3. The department has an obligation to include social media sites when conducting background investigations of job candidates.
  2. Personal Use:
    1. Employees shall not post, transmit, reproduce, and/or disseminate information to the internet or any other forum (public or private) that would tend to discredit or reflect unfavorably upon the Department or any of the Department’s employees.
    2. Posting the following types of criminal justice information to social media sites is explicitly prohibited:
      1. Confidential, sensitive, or copyrighted information to which you have access due to your employment with The University.
      2. Data from ongoing criminal or administrative investigations.
      3. Photographs of suspects, arrestee or evidence.
      4. Personal statements about on-duty incidents.
      5. Comments related to pending prosecutions.
    3. Employee’s shall not knowingly or recklessly post false information about the agency, superiors, coworkers, public officials, and others who have a relationship to or with the agency.
    4. For safety and security reasons, departmental personnel are cautioned if they choose to disclose their employment with this department or to display departmental logos, uniforms, or similar identifying items on social media sites.