App Security: Yet One More Thing Teachers Are Being Held Accountable For

Well, a teacher’s burden just got bigger! The New York Times reports that, “Scores of education technology start-ups … are marketing new digital learning tools directly to teachers.” Not surprisingly, teachers are trying out these new apps. But, in addition to deciding how to use an app with their students, a teacher now needs to figure out if that app provides adequate privacy and/or security for their students’ data.

House unveils cyber bill and signals bipartisan compromise

House intelligence committee leaders unveiled a bipartisan cybersecurity bill Tuesday amid signs of broad agreement on long-sought legislation that would allow private companies to share with the government details of how they are hacked, without fear of being sued. The information sharing is badly needed, backers say, so that government agencies can help the private sector defend itself against sophisticated cyberattacks, many of which are undertaken by intelligence agencies in countries such as Russia, China, North Korea and Iran.

Internet Governance Survey 2015

Cybersecurity is the most important issue facing the Internet community today, according to 86 percent of respondents in a new survey from the Internet Society. The poll, which questioned over 800 people, also noted concerns about Internet governance. Three-quarters said that making the issue easier to understand is "extremely" or "very important." Just a smidgen fewer called for countries and communities to share their best practices for overseeing the Web.

Privacy Bill May Fail Student Data Protection

A bill aimed at safeguarding student privacy fails to secure children's personal information and protects the interests of companies more than kids, privacy advocates say about the congressional legislation introduced Monday. For one thing, the bill would not address situations like the one that came to light last week in which ​testing company Pearson was found to be monitoring student social media accounts to screen for attempts to cheat on tests.

No Expectation of Privacy

The Obama administration briefly considered but ultimately decided against expanding a new student privacy bill beyond K-12 education, according to sources with knowledge of the drafting process. The resulting draft is a “missed opportunity” for the White House to address privacy in higher education, legal scholars say. The bill was supposed to be filed on Monday, but by the end of the day, lawmakers were “still working through some of the technical nuances of the bill,” a spokeswoman for Messer said in an email.

Student Data Privacy Tops Dept. of Education’s Agenda

Many sectors, not just education, are rushing to find ways to use the tidal wave of electronic data created by digital devices. Those who deal with data tied to K-12 schools find themselves under special scrutiny because they’re working with children. Schools must find a balance that allows teachers to try new innovations and still ensures the programs used are secure, several officials speaking at SXSWedu said.

U.S. needs offensive strategy to deter cyber attacks: NSA chief

Admiral Mike Rogers, director of the National Security Agency and commander of U.S. Cyber Command, told the Senate Armed Services Committee that too many adversaries can attack the United States without fear of retaliation. "We focus primarily on the defensive, but I think now we're at a tipping point where we not only need to continue to build on the defensive capability, but we've also got to broaden our capabilities to provide policymakers and operational commanders with a broader range of options," Rogers said.

Bill Would Limit Use of Student Data

In an effort to ease parent and teacher concerns, two congressmen are planning to introduce a bill on Monday. Called the Student Digital Privacy and Parental Rights Act, it would place limits on how education technology companies can use information about kindergarten through 12th-grade students.

Student privacy, online exams cause concern for tech leaders

School technology leaders are concerned about whether districts are prepared to give online exams, the security of student data and having enough funding to meet the demands of district leaders. According to the 2015 survey released this week, less than 30 percent of those surveyed said they are fully prepared for online assessments, which are coming to districts around the country – including those in Georgia – this year. More than half reported they don’t have enough money to meet the expectations of school boards and district leaders, and more are increasingly concerned about the privacy of student data.

Senate panel approves controversial cybersecurity bill

Approved by a 14-1 vote, the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act (CISA) aims -- by providing expanded legal liability protections to companies sharing data -- to encourage US companies to share information about security breaches with each other and government agencies. Supporters argue that the legislation is necessary to reduce the impact of an uptick in the theft of customers' personal information.

Obama sharply criticizes China's plans for new technology rules

In an interview with Reuters, Obama said he was concerned about Beijing's plans for a far-reaching counterterrorism law that would require technology firms to hand over encryption keys, the passcodes that help protect data, and install security "backdoors" in their systems to give Chinese authorities surveillance access.

Cyber threats expanding, new US intelligence assessment says

In its annual worldwide threats assessment released Thursday, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence says that a catastrophic destruction of infrastructure is unlikely, but it nonetheless placed cyber attacks above terrorism on the list of dangers facing the nation. "Cyber threats to U.S. national and economic security are increasing in frequency, scale, sophistication, and severity of impact," the assessment says.

How to Fight Cyberthreats: White House Calls on Congress, Tech Industry to Help

The White House is ratcheting up its warnings on the dangers of cyberspace, calling on tech companies and other private-sector outfits to share more information about emerging threats, and appealing to Congress to enact legislation in the cyber arena.

Outsmarting the Hype of TV and Car Technologies

If consumers want TVs that can hear their conversations and cars that gather their driving histories, they certainly have the right to possess them. The onus is on organizations that take advantage of these technologies to educate their evolving consumers about how the technology works, what information is gathered and used, and how it can deliver on customer expectations.

Is Student Data at Risk Due to Out-of-Date Privacy Laws

At a recent House hearing, members of a subcommittee on education generally agreed that the 41-year-old Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) needs is due for an update that would restrict the collection and usage of education data, while at the same time leaving room for new technologies to flourish.


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