Feeds

Norfolk schools install kid-monitoring software

Makes children play nice on school network

Application security programs and practises

Norfolk CC is using monitoring software to fight bullying and protect children from internet grooming.

It has set up a managed service for primary schools and is encouraging higher schools to use a software developed by Securus to identify threats to children coming through school networks.

Andrew White, integrated services officer the council's children's services ICT support unit, said it has helped to reduce bullying in the county's schools.

"By implementing Securus it was found that the amount of 'off task' activity decreases rapidly over a short period of time," he said. "Schools using Securus can be confident that their network is constantly being monitored for any infringements of their acceptable use policy and anti-bullying policy."

Speaking to GC News on 4 June 2007, White said the software monitors emails coming onto the schools' networks. It searches for inappropriate words and phrases, monitoring potentially harmful activities whether pupils and teachers are using the internet and email, or working offline in other applications such as Word.

It also provides screenshots of every violation, along with details of the user, workstation, time, date and nature of the incident, to give teachers evidence in dealing with the problem.

New terms can be added to the system when needed, and it can spot insults or threats in text language.

"Children come to the school in the knowledge that if they are using the school's system to open emails staff will pick up any threats," White said.

Some 30 primary and 20 secondary schools in the region now use the software and the council has reported a marked decrease in bad behaviour online.

White said that, while secondary schools are running the system for themselves, the primary schools are using the council's managed service.

"Primary schools in particular don't have the time or resources to research and run this type of technology," he said. "So the council does this for them – checking the violations, saving any serious incidents and passing them to the school to decide on what further action to take."

He added that the process is permissible under the Data and Telecommunications Act as the schools make people aware that they have it in place.

This article was originally published at Kablenet.

Kablenet's GC weekly is a free email newsletter covering the latest news and analysis of public sector technology. To register click here.

HP ProLiant Gen8: Integrated lifecycle automation

More from The Register

next story
Arrr: Freetard-bothering Digital Economy Act tied up, thrown in the hold
Ministry of Fun confirms: Yes, we're busy doing nothing
ONE EMAIL costs mining company $300 MEEELION
Environmental activist walks free after hoax sent share price over a cliff
'Blow it up': Plods pop round for chat with Commonwealth Games tweeter
You'd better not be talking about the council's housing plans
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
Apple smacked with privacy sueball over Location Services
Class action launched on behalf of 100 million iPhone owners
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.