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Digital Millennium Copyright Act DMCA

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act  (DMCA) is a United States copyright law that implements two 1996 treaties of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). It criminalizes production and dissemination of technology, devices, or services intended to circumvent measures (commonly known as digital rights management or DRM) that control access to copyrighted works. It also criminalizes the act of circumventing an access control, whether or not there is actual infringement of copyright itself. In addition, the DMCA heightens the penalties for copyright infringement on the Internet. The US Copyright Office Summary of the document can be found at


In 2008 Congress passed and the President signed the Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA). Several of the Act’s provisions are intended to reduce unauthorized duplication of copyrighted works through peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing on campus networks. The provisions set forth in the Act became effective on July 1, 2010 and require the University to implement a plan to effectively combat the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted material by users of the college’s network without unduly interfering with the educational and legitimate use of the network.

  1. Educate students on copyright and Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) issues.
  2. Prevent inappropriate use of peer-to-peer (P2P) programs and software through utilizations of a variety of technologies to deter the behavior.
  3. Suggest alternatives for downloading programs (Pandora, iTunes, etc.).


All Wake Forest University libraries maintain copyright guidelines that provide comprehensive copyright information and including DMCA requirements and how the University handles copyright infringements.  Appropriate use of the internet, DMCA policies and copyright infringement are also discussed during student orientation.  Additionally, information on copyright infringement and DMCA policies is now included in annual compliance training required of all students, faculty, and staff (beginning in 2012).


WFUBMC IT currently uses intrusion prevention technologies to block peer-to-peer applications.


A list of legal alternatives to illegal downloading and sharing may be referenced at the EDUCAUSE Legal Sources page

Effectiveness Review 

The Wake Forest Baptist Health’s plan to comply with the HEOA requirements is reviewed annually to determine effectiveness in educating students and preventing copyright infringement. For more information on Wake Forest University Copyright and campus downloading policies see  

If you have further questions, please contact Wake Forest Baptist Health Information Technology Security department (internal only) or call 336-716-4009.



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