We know that there are many of you now working from home. Protecting children and staff data must remain the highest priority.
It is known that the risks for data breaches become much higher when data is accessed remotely or on a portable device and must be carefully considered. With simple planning and by applying common sense you can help reduce these risks greatly.
When working from home, we strongly recommend that you access your school’s data from a work provided staff laptop, iPad, Chromebook or any other such hardware device.
If you need to use a personal device, you should not store data or files locally but should save them to your school provided cloud storage or, if this is not possible, on an encrypted removable drive. If you use a personal device you must monitor the downloads area regularly to delete any files which have been downloaded and are no longer needed. You must have appropriate passwords in place as indicated below.
The data that you need to be aware of when working from home includes, but is not limited to:
- school emails and any attachments which you might download from them.
- any personal data downloaded from learning platforms.
- any data downloaded or accessed from your school MIS such as SIMS, Scholarpack, Bromcom, Arbor or Pupil Asset.
You should take all the steps necessary to ensure that you do as much as you can to protect the personal data and preserve the privacy of pupils, parents, your colleagues and any other adults you are working with. This is why it is recommended that you use a school provided device to work on at all times.
Whichever device you are working on we recommend that you adopt the following practices:
- Be extra vigilant. No-one else in your household must have access to or see the data you are using, and you must be sure you use strong passwords to protect these devices.
- Make sure you use a password that no-one else in the household knows or can guess. Please don’t write them down and store them where someone can easily find them.
- Whilst working with school data you must lock your screen whilst you are away from your device.
- Never allow other members of your family to use your school provided device whilst you are logged on using your school network credentials.
- Check that all your devices are fully up to date in respect of anti-virus, anti-malware and all software security updates.
- Always be very careful about which websites you visit and email attachments you open.
- Check that all your local storage is suitably encrypted. If you are unsure what this means, ask at school.
- Ensure that the devices cannot be lost or stolen. Always keep any device in a secure place. If you are transporting a device in your car it should always be placed in the boot. This applies to any hard copies (paper) of information that you take home too.
- Remove ALL school related data from your personal devices when it is no longer needed or when told to by your school.
- Only use a removable drive if the drive is encrypted and you cannot store data securely either in school provided cloud storage, such as OneDrive or GoogleDrive, or on a school provided device.