Guidelines for Administration and Usage of e-mail Accounts in Indian Audit and Accounts Department
1 1. Introduction
1.1. Government of India, e-mail policy/guidelines for E-mail Account Management and Effective Email Usage lays down the policy/guidelines with respect to use of e-mail services. Government of India, National Informatics Centre (NIC), under the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology was designated as the Implementing Agency (IA) for Government of India’s e-mail services.
1.2. In line with the e-mail policy and guidelines of Government of India, the Guidelines for administration and usage of E-mail accounts in IAAD (herein after referred to as Guidelines) have been framed with the objective of promoting efficient, effective, lawful and ethical usage of Government of India e-mail services and regulating its use in IAAD.
1.3. Only the e-mail services provided by NIC shall be used for all official communication.
1.4. In line with GoI policy and to promote Green ICT, e-mails are encouraged to be used as the principal means of communication by IAAD.
a) Email Policy of GoI October 2014 Version 1.0
b) Guidelines for E-mail Account Management & Effective Email Usage – October 2014 Version 1.0
The Guidelines are applicable to all employees of IAAD, consultants and temporary staff employed by IAAD.
4. Roles and responsibilities
4.1. Deputy Comptroller and Auditor General (IS) shall be the Competent Authority for approving all decisions relating to e-mail policy in IAAD.
4.2. Principal Director (IS) shall be the Chief Nodal Officer for administration of email ids and e-mail distribution lists in IAAD. The Chief Nodal Officer or other officers as assigned by the Chief Nodal Officer shall be responsible for 2 creation, modification, deletion and de-activation of e-mail accounts of employees of IAAD.
4.3. Every office shall designate a field Nodal Officer, preferably the Group officer holding Administration charge, to co-ordinate all matters relating to the administration of e-mail ids in their respective office.
4.4. The e-mail account holder (herein after referred to User) shall be responsible for any data /e-mail that is transmitted using the GoI e-mail system, from his/her account during the period they hold the account.
5. Types of e-mail accounts
5.1. Only three types of email-ids will be created in IAAD; designation based email ids, name based email-ids and generic email-ids for sections or branch offices.
5.2. Name based e-mail ids shall be assigned to all personnel of IAAD. Name based e-mail ids can be used for both official and demi-official communication.
5.3. Designation based email-ids shall be issued to officers of the rank AAG and above. They may also be assigned to officials below the rank of AAG in offices on requirement basis. Designation based e-mail ids shall be used only for official communication.
5.4. On request, a generic e-mail id may be assigned to a section/wing of an office. They are created for sections/wings which deal with a large number of generic mails or requests for information pertaining to their official work. For example, Bills section of an office may receive different types of bills from officials regularly. They may be received in the e-mail id of the section from where they can be purported and allotted to the official concerned. Generic email ids of section/wing shall be used only for official communication.
5.5. An official of the section should be made responsible for administration of section based email account of that section by the Group officer administering the section.
5.6. For outsourced/contractual employees and consultants, only designation based e-mail ids shall be created on request with a validity for the period of the contract and after due authorization from the Nodal Officer.
6. Format of e-mail ids
6.1. Designation based e-mail ids shall be in the following format: ..@cag.gov.in
6.2. Consultants shall be allotted e-mail idswith the format: ..@cag.gov.in
6.3. Name based e-mails shall be in the following format:
IAAS officers: @cag.gov.in
would not be mentioned for designation based e-mail ids created for officials in Headquarters.
6.4. The extension (ext) mentioned in the above formats would be based on the office of the user as follows:
*There would be no extension for combined Accountant General offices
6.5. The abbreviations used for in the above formats are listed in Annexure I.
7. Validity of e-mail ids
7.1. Validity of e-mail accounts for section and designation based e-mail ids shall be perpetual subject to its continued usage.
7.2. Name based e-mail ids shall be allowed to be retained by IAAD officials for a period of one year from the date of resignation or superannuation, as the case may be. In exceptional cases, on specific request, this validity can be further extended upto one year subject to the approval of the Chief Nodal Officer.
7.3. Email ids of consultants shall be valid for the duration of contract period.
8. Appropriate use of e-mail services
8.1. Designation based e-mail ids shall be used only for official communication. Name based e-mail ids can be used for both official and demi-official communication. Personal communication using official email ids should be restricted.
8.2. All routine communication such as returns sent to headquarters shall be sent only through e-mails. E-mails should be replied as far as possible by e-mails only.
8.3. Users are responsible for use of email as a professional resource in an appropriate manner. The following, shall be treated as inappropriate use of e-mail services; this list is illustrative and not all inclusive:
i. Creation and exchange of e-mails that could be categorized as harassing, obscene or threatening.
ii. Unauthorized exchange of proprietary information or any other privileged, confidential or sensitive information.
iii. Unauthorized access of the services. This includes the distribution of e-mails anonymously, use of other officers’ user ids or using a false identity.
iv. Creation and exchange of advertisements, solicitations, chain letters and other unofficial, unsolicited e-mail.
v. Creation and exchange of information in violation of any laws, including copyright laws.
vi. Willful transmission of an e-mail containing a computer virus.
vii. Misrepresentation of the identity of the sender of an email.
viii. Use or attempt to use the accounts of others without their permission.
ix. Transmission of e-mails involving language derogatory to religion, caste, ethnicity, sending personal e-mails to a broadcast list, exchange of e-mails containing antinational messages, sending e-mails with obscene material, etc.
x. Use of distribution lists for the purpose of sending e-mails that are personal in nature, such as personal functions, etc.
9. Creation of e-mail ids
9.1. The requirement for new mail ids, duly authorized by the Nodal officer, shall be sent to the Chief Nodal Officer in the format authorised by the Chief Nodal Officer. All the details obligatory in the format shall be provided, failing which the e-mail id shall not be created. As far as possible, requests for creation of mail ids should be pooled together and sent as a bulk request to the Chief Nodal officer.
9.2. A Name based e-mail id shall be created for an official of IAAD within a week of his/her joining the office.
9.3. Designation based e-mail ids and generic e-mail ids for section/wing/ branch offices/offices shall be created whenever required.
9.4. Mobile numbers and alternative e-mail ids shall be used by NIC to inform an user regarding de-activation of accounts, compromise of the e-mail account or any other information that is required for safety of the e-mail account.
10. Modification of e-mail ids
10.1. To modify an e-mail id, the user shall send a request to the Field Nodal officer of the field office for approval. The Nodal officer shall forward the request to the Chief Nodal officer.
11. De-activation of e-mail ids
11.1. Any account which is inactive for a period of 90 days shall be deactivated under intimation to the Nodal officer. The user id along with the data shall be deleted from the e-mail system after a period of 180 days, if no request for activation is received during this period. Subsequently, all formalities shall need to be completed for re-opening of the said account with the same id, subject to availability. In such cases, no data from backup taken by NIC shall be normally restored.
12. Deletion of e-mail ids
12.1. Name based e-mails ids shall be automatically deleted from the current user’s list one year after the date of superannuation/resignation. An e-mail informing of the deletion would be sent to the user one month before the superannuation. It shall be the responsibility of the user to forward all important official emails to the next incumbent. Extension of validity in exceptional cases is as per para 7.2.
12.2. In cases of suspension, the Nodal officer shall take into custody the designation based e-mail id of the suspended official, if any, and change the password of the e-mail id immediately. The officer shall continue to have access to his name based e-mail id.
13. Identity of e-mail user
13.1. The user, when using the email services, shall not employ a false identity in such a manner as to create the impression to the recipient that the email originated from another source or individual.
13.2. The profile of the e-mail user shall be kept updated as on date. The link https://msgapp.emailgov.in/profile may be used for updating the profile.
13.3. All name based user ids shall indicate their name and designation in their display name. All designation based user ids shall indicate only the designation and office in the display name. Section mail ids shall indicate only the section name and office in the display name.
13.4. All official e-mails should contain the sender’s name, designation and office name. E-mails of demi-official nature should contain the name of the sender.
14. Process of handover of designation based e-mail ids and mail ids for sections/wings
14.1. A user on transfer to another office, if using a designation based email account, shall hand over the same to his/her successor/officer in-charge of coordination in the section prior to moving out of the office. This shall be done as a part of the handing over of charge process. The successor shall be responsible for re-setting the password after taking charge and for updating the profile of the e-mail account including his/her mobile number.
14.2. The nodal officer in each organization shall ensure that the password is changed prior to giving “No-Dues” certificate to the user.
14.3. The user can continue to use the name-based id assigned to him/her on the Government e-mail service during their entire tenure in IAAD.
14.4. The nodal officer shall inform the Chief nodal officer two weeks prior to superannuation/transfer of a user for updating of the centralized e-mail database and to enable co-ordination with NIC.
15. Security of e-mail accounts
15.1. Users shall ensure that all recommended best practices for security of desktop/laptop/handheld devices used to access official email accounts are followed from time to time.
15.2. Users should logout from their mail accounts whenever they leave the computer unattended for a considerable period of time.
15.3. All users accessing the e-mail services must use strong passwords for security of their e-mail accounts. Users shall comply with the Password policy of NIC.
15.4. Users shall ensure that e-mails are protected and e-mail passwords are treated as sensitive and confidential information. Passwords of e-mail accounts shall not be shared with anyone, including personal assistants or secretaries, even for official purposes.
15.5. Users are encouraged to change password on regular basis.
15.6. It is recommended that password used for online forms / services / registrations/ subscriptions shall not be the same as the password of official E-mail account.
15.7. Users should ensure authenticity of the source and safe nature of the attachments before forwarding any mail.
15.8. Users should exercise caution in opening mails where links are embedded in the mail. The authenticity and the safe nature of the link should be ascertained before clicking the link.
15.9. Users should disregard any e-mail including those from NIC or the competent authority or his delegated staff that requests for the password of the e-mail account and should refrain from sharing such details.
15.10. E-mails that are not spam but identified as spam are delivered in the “Probably Spam” folder that exists in the user’s mailbox. Hence, it is recommended that the users check the “Probably Spam” folder on a regular basis.