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Murray Edwards College
University of Cambridge

Security policy

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Security policy

The security policy seeks to formalise a cohesive and integrated approach to security throughout Murray Edwards College. Security is not intended to be a hindrance to College activity but is a necessary ingredient for the safe and efficient operation of the College. 

Policy statement

The College will endeavour to ensure as far as is reasonably practical, the personal safety and security of all students, staff, bona fide visitors and contributors whilst at Murray Edwards College.

Security measures are in place to support: 

  • An open, safe and welcoming College
  • The reduction of incidents and the minimisation of risk
  • The personal safety of individuals
  • Protection of premises, physical assets, including personal property and vehicles
  • Clear, regularly reviewed policies and procedures
  • Developing partnerships with external authorities with whom the College can work alongside to help implement the security policy

Under pinning the security policy:

  • Proactive prevention. Proactive deterrence to minimise crime and incidents and their effects on the College, staff and students 
  • Managed response. A responsive, effective, efficient service to deal with the College’s operational security needs
  • Stakeholder care. Student, staff and visitor welfare to promote a safe and secure work, living and study environment



Responsibility for security rests with all students, staff and visitors to the University. In particular, everyone should report all activity, suspected or real, of a criminal nature or any suspicious activity immediately to the Porters' Lodge. 

Overall responsibility rests with:

Senior management team (OTM), College Officers, Head Porter, Heads of Facilities, Line Managers.
Ensuring all have access to and are familiar with the security policy, paying particular attention to those issues which are directly relevant to the activity of their department.
Making sure all members of staff and students in their department understand and exercise their security responsibilities, including the University identity cards, and have due regard to Murray Edwards College property.

Students and staff:  
Must co-operate with requests from the security team, especially in emergency or evacuation situations and in relation to security/fire procedures. Staff are required when on Murray Edwards College property to carry their University cards. Students in general please refer to your online handbook or the University website for corresponding information.

Staff and students in general:
All suspicious activity should be immediately reported.
Personal valuables should be locked away or placed out of sight, personal property should never be left unattended. Doors should be locked at all times when you leave, do not leave open or unattended.
Windows should be on the security latch if on lower ground floors and advised to close them at night.  Windows in offices must be closed and secured on departure where locks are fitted. Curtains or blinds closed at dusk and lights (except security lighting) should be turned off when leaving.
All incidents of crime on Murray Edwards College premises, real and suspected, must be reported to the Porters' Lodge.

Porters will make external (and where appropriate internal) patrols of buildings, to aid in the identification of security risks, monitor public safety and act as a deterrent against crime.

Personal security:
Whilst it is the responsibility of the security team to provide a safe and secure environment, it is the responsibility of all on Murray Edwards College premises to take all reasonable measures to ensure their own personal security.
Students are responsible for their guests when on Murray Edwards College property, they are also responsible for meeting them especially once College accesses are locked including making sure they leave by the appropriate exits.
Suspicious behaviour - The Porters will support and if appropriate, ensure if necessary, the Police are contacted. Each situation will be different and it is at the discretion of the individuals concerned as to what action they wish to take, but at no time should they put themselves at risk.
Reporting suspicious activity is extremely important for security in helping to prevent and detect crime against Murray Edwards College.
The following policies/procedures can be found on the College website: 
Threatening or abusive behaviour, Drugs misuse policy, Lost or found property

Visitors/Contractors: (including conference delegates and external event attendees) have a general responsibility to security issues. In particular, they must follow security procedures designed to protect Murray Edwards College property and where issued, wear their visitors badge at all times. Visitors must follow instructions from the security team or from their host department, particularly in emergency situations. Contractor’s access to College buildings will be strictly controlled by the Facilities Manager according to agreed access control procedures.

Incident reporting:
It is the responsibility of all staff and students of Murray Edwards College to report all activity, suspected or real, of a security/safety nature. Incident reporting is crucial to the identification of patterns of criminal activity, risk analysis, investigation and recommendations to be made to prevent a recurrence. Success in the College's fight against crime is greatly enhanced by fast, efficient and detailed reporting.

Procedure: Reporting of security/ safety incidents:
 All incidents of a security/safety nature on Murray Edwards College premises should be reported in the first instance to the Porters' Lodge on ext. 62100 (24 hours) or 01223762100.
The victim in all reported cases of all crimes, but in particular assault, indecency, fraud, theft (including car or cycle theft) and burglary are advised to inform both the local police and the Porters' Lodge, In case of doubt, advice on Police involvement may be sought from the Head Porter or Senior Tutor.

Criminal offences: Any criminal offence committed by students will in the first instance be reported to the Dean, Senior Tutor and Head Porter. In some circumstances, the Police will be contacted.
Any Police involvement on Murray Edwards College premises is to be notified to the Bursar, Senior Tutor and Head Porter to enable effective University management of any subsequent actions on our estate.
This reporting procedure should be followed 24 hours per day.

Crime investigation: All crimes that occur on College premises will be investigated appropriately to prevent re-occurrence and crime prevention.

Crime prevention: 
Security awareness: Proactive crime prevention and security awareness will help to ensure a safe, secure environment, enabling work and study to continue.
All crimes that occur on Murray Edwards College premises will be investigated appropriately to prevent re-occurrence and crime prevention. Notifying the Porters' Lodge of any security risk.
Anyone on site can at any time be required to show their University card to security staff, on request. Failure to do so may result in an immediate request to leave the College premises if the person’s identity cannot be confirmed.

Access control: 
Main buildings including accommodation buildings have an automatic swipe controlled access entry only. 

Security of equipment:
All valuable portable IT and AV equipment such as laptops & PDA’s, must be locked away out of sight when not in use, especially overnight.

Out of hours access:
The use of University premises at weekends or out of hours is restricted. Departments or individual staff wishing to teach, run tutorials or organise an event should contact the Events team using the online Room Booking forms. 

Christmas closure 
Dates and times for three days are permanently fixed unless there are any unforeseen circumstances that could change them.
Students remaining in College over this period will be housed where possible together onsite. The main College building will be totally secure and locked with a unique key. Porters work two separate four hour shifts each day for security checks. Notices on buildings that have occupants will have displayed on their main doors emergency services contact details along with the Head Porter's contact number where a message can be left.
Staff who require access to work in their offices outside normal working hours when limited security staff are on duty should inform the Porters' Lodge in case at any point they need assistance. 

The following Procedures can be accessed on the College website:

CCTV Policy

Data Protection

Lost or found property

Keys and cards

University Cards

Confidential Waste: Please refer to GDPR

Library Admission Policy