It's a private network. They have the right to set the rules for it. If they think that you have illegal obtained material on your hard drive and want you to remove it and verify its removal you've got a choice to comply or they'll just blacklist your MAC address. Even though none of the major ISPs take this position, they have the right to do so because in the end it's their network. The lawyers weren't incompetent at all, though I'm sure you could make a very successful argument of them being over reaching. Is it bad policy? Probably... A better way to handle it would have been something along the lines of a strike or demerit system. If you get three strikes or x number of demerits you're blacklisted. With all that being said, it would have been painfully easy to bypass any attempt for the University to track any illegal downloading although VPNs weren't as common as a commodity as they are now.