Guidelines for using your personal device for work or study

Last updated 7 February 2023.

If you use your personal device, such as a laptop or mobile phone, for University work or study, then it may contain information and data that belongs to the University.

These guidelines set out your responsibilities when accessing University information and data on a personal device.

It’s important you follow these guidelines to ensure that using your device doesn’t put you in breach of the University’s Information Security Policy (.pdf) and the IT Acceptable Use Policy (AUP).

Your responsibilities

Securing your device

It is your responsibility to secure your device.

  • Set up a screen lock using a PIN, password, pattern or biometrics, and set it to lock automatically after a period of inactivity.
  • Enable "find my device" and remote lock and erase services. (Android / iOS).
  • Install operating system and app updates promptly.
  • Use antivirus software if it is available.
  • Do not "jailbreak", "hack" or "root" your device - tampering with your device will significantly weaken the security of your device.
  • Only install software or apps from official stores.
  • Encrypt your device if possible.
  • Disable Bluetooth and wifi when not in use.
  • Avoid public or open wifi networks - use your mobile data service instead.
  • Never leave your device unattended.

Storing information on your device

You should avoid storing University information on your device for long periods of time and:

  • delete emails and attachments as soon as you have finished with them
  • limit the amount of information that is synced to your device

If you share your device

If you share your device with someone else you must ensure they cannot access University information, such as University systems or your email. You should:

  • create separate accounts or profiles your device
  • log off from your profile when you stop using the device
  • never allow your device to remember passwords for any University systems and networks you access

Disposing of your device

Before disposing of your device you should:

  • un-sync your device from any University computers or services

  • remove all University data from your device

  • reset your device to factory settings

  • change your University password

Leaving the University

When you leave the University you must remove all University data and information from your device, and:

  • un-sync your device from other University computers, systems or networks
  • remove University software

Lost, stolen or compromised devices

Data protection law requires the University to protect data from unauthorised access, misuse or loss. 

You must report a data breach if your personal device is lost or stolen, or you suspect its security is compromised. You should also change your password immediately

If your device is lost or stolen, try using "Find my iPhone / Device". This service can lock your device and display a contact message. If the device isn’t somewhere safe you may want to remotely erase/wipe it.

Stolen devices are rarely recovered, so use the remote wipe or erase facility if possible.


Failure to follow these guidelines may put you in breach of the IT Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) and may lead to disciplinary action.

If you have any technical questions about these guidelines, contact the IT Helpdesk.

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