I am dealing with an unfortunate situation where a recently graduated student has recently passed away. I have received multiple requests for access to the deceased student's email account for family and friends.
Since we keep student accounts open through the summer post-graduation, the deceased alum's student email account is still active. To date, the objectives of the requests are to save off pictures from the account and to identify contacts who may need to be notified of the passing.
I have several concerns (e.g. privacy) about these requests so wanted to ask for perspective and advice from this group, in general but also on some specific questions. I am also interested in any existing policies that address this specific scenario if you have already established.
- Under what circumstances (if any) would you provide access to this account and to whom?
- What considerations (if any) for access are different for the account being for a deceased alum versus enrolled student?
- If access is not provided to the family, but a university staff member accessed and retrieved specifically requested information, what limitations would you place on information to be provided?
Thank you all for your help in dealing with this challenging situation.
Executive Director, IT Services
Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at http://www.educause.edu/discuss.