Can Yaks be tracked back to an individual if they are using Colgate’s network?
If a user or Colgate has a concern about the content of a post, we can work with law enforcement who, with additional information, can determine whether they have enough information to issue a subpoena to Yik Yak.
On their website, Yik Yak states: “When Yik Yak receives a request for user account information from a government agency investigating criminal activity, the Yik Yak team reviews each request to be sure that it satisfies all legal requirements. Yik Yak’s legal policy can be viewed here:http://www.yikyakapp.com/legal.
ITS can log registered devices that access Yik Yak from Colgate’s network; however, all of the communications are encrypted and the contents are unreadable. We may be able to see what devices are accessing the application, but we cannot distinguish between Yaks, updates, views, and votes. Due to the volume of use at Colgate, there are often multiple simultaneous connections at any given moment, so specific actions (posts, updates, views, votes, etc.) cannot be tied to an individual user based on our logs alone.
Can Colgate track the sender of an email?
Colgate can only accurately track the origin of emails sent using university email accounts. Since the university issues all @colgate.edu accounts, we can easily identify the sender. Colgate performs investigations involving email and other forms of electronic communications only in accordance with its Stewardship and Custodianship of Email policy.
If a user sends an email from a provider such as Google, Yahoo or Outlook.com, we can only track it back to the service – not to the sender. Even though Colgate utilizes the Google platform as our email service provider, we do not have any access to user information for Google accounts created outside of our Colgate domain.
Outside email providers are protective of their users’ identity, and will only disclose user information as result of a subpoena, search warrant or court order from law enforcement officials. As one example, here is a quick video showing how Google responds to requests for user’s information.