Public computers - acceptable use policy

Public computers – acceptable use policy

We provide access to computers and the internet to support the educational, recreational, information, cultural and communication needs of the community. The service is free of charge and is available at all of our libraries to library members and those visiting the borough. More about using computers in the library

If you use the computers you must agree to the terms and conditions set out in this Acceptable Use Policy.


Virus checking and other security software will run on all computers, but we cannot guarantee total protection from viruses when using our computers. You may not install your own software or connect your own computer equipment to our computers and users are currently unable to open some attachments.

Consequences of misuse

It is prohibited to use our computers for illegal, offensive, abusive, actionable or criminal purposes or to seek access into unauthorised areas. There is legislation in place covering or affecting computer-related activities and you are reminded that it is your responsibility to comply with this legislation including:

  • Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988
  • European Copyright Directive 2001
  • Computer Misuse Act 1990
  • Data Protection Act 1998
  • Any other local, regional, national and international law, order or regulation.

We reserve the right to terminate users sessions and refuse further computer access to anyone accessing or distributing materials which are deemed to be illegal or unacceptable or have the potential to offend or disturb other users.

Library staff on site will determine whether any computer activity is unacceptable and have the right to instruct computer users to remove unsuitable images or text from the screen if, in the staff member’s judgement it could offend or disturb other users.

Please be aware of the needs of others who are also using the computers, anyone disrupting or disturbing other users may be asked to leave.

There are regulations laid down by Rochdale Borough Council regarding the behaviour of visitors to the library. Please ask a member of staff if you wish to see these Byelaws.

Anyone found to be misusing the computers may be excluded from using any public computer facility within Rochdale Libraries. As well as the loss of computer privileges, other actions may be taken, including reporting a suspected, or attempted criminal offence to the appropriate authorities for investigation and further action.

This policy will be reviewed on a regular basis to ensure it remains relevant. Questions or comments about this policy can be directed to Library Services or you can ask any member of library staff.

Your responsibility

We would like you to be aware of the needs of others who are also using the computers, respect their privacy, to behave in a manner that doesn't disrupt their use and enjoyment and to be responsible in your use of the equipment and facilities in our libraries.

We try to prevent customers from accidentally accessing sites containing or promoting illegal or offensive content. Please do not deliberately search for, or distribute, illegal or offensive content.

These computers have been secured to stop most attempts at changing settings. This is to make sure that customers don't accidentally or deliberately prevent others from using these computers. Please do not attempt to change the settings on the computer or try to do anything that you know will compromise the security of the computer or the network that it uses. Please note that we monitor and log all attempts at "hacking" into the network.

Be safe on the web

If you have epilepsy or suffer from any condition that may be affected by using a computer, use is at your own risk. If you find yourself feeling unwell while you’re working on the computer please end your session and, if necessary, ask a member of staff for assistance.

You should never reveal your username and password for any email or other online services you access over the internet as you are usually responsible for any misuse of the service that occurs through your account. Similarly, you should not try to log on to any service with another person’s details or use someone else's library card.

Never tick any "remember my details on this computer" options – always remember these are public computers that can be used by anyone.

Online financial transactions (banking, shopping, travel, ebay/paypal and so on) are an increasingly common use of the internet. These should be conducted over secure connections – look out for the secure padlock icon in the task bar; or make sure that the web address starts with https:// instead of just http://

If you choose to undertake online financial transactions over the internet by credit or debit cards, you do so entirely at your own risk. We accept no responsibility for any financial or commercial transactions you undertake whilst using library computers.

Please be aware that subscribing to websites and entering or broadcasting personal or private details over the internet may lead to you receiving unwanted mail or attention. Always be sure to read the terms and conditions attached to any website you subscribe to. Families, children and young people should also be aware of other internet safety issues.

The Internet

The internet is a global electronic network containing a wealth of valuable information. However, you should be aware that there may also be information that is inaccurate, controversial, out of date and offensive or illegal.

We can accept no responsibility for the quality, accuracy or availability of information or any services accessed via the internet. We assume no liability for any loss, damage or injury, direct or indirect, suffered as a result of using our computer facilities.

All council internet services are filtered in order to block access to websites known to contain unsuitable or illegal content. However, filtering software is not infallible and there may be occasions when perfectly acceptable websites are blocked and some inappropriate websites may not be filtered. If you have any cause for concern please speak to the member of staff on duty at the time.

We can and will monitor access to internet sites and users should also be aware that use of the internet may also be monitored and recorded by third parties such as internet service providers and individual websites.

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