IT | Security

Going Beyond Physical Device Security in the Classroom

By: Absolute Editorial Team | 9/20/2013

Tablets and laptops are being increasingly integrated into K-12 school classrooms where 1-to-1 programs provide students with personal devices to enhance opportunities for learning. As we discussed in our whitepaper, “Realizing the Promise of Digital Textbooks,” the demand for digital textbooks and e-learning is on the rise, though the use of iPads and tablets in the classroom is not without risk. Unfortunately, many of those devices, and the kids who carry them, have become the target for thieves.

Police are saying that school-issued iPads are being stolen from kids, a figure we’re likely to see increase as criminals learn which schools have 1-to-1 programs in place. Not only does this jeopardize children’s safety, it becomes a significant device management issue for school districts. Many schools struggle with tracking devices; most stolen devices are never recovered.

While it is one of our Protecting Devices in Classrooms suggestions that schools have a safe place on property to store devices when not in use, sometimes these storage areas attract thieves. For example, in Chicago recently a group of 10 people (including teens) stole 300 iPads from carts stored in an elementary school; an alarm was deactivated for more than 5 hours during this time period. When it comes to protecting devices, school districts need to move beyond physical security to have remote capabilities for endpoint management and endpoint security.

K-12 Solutions from Absolute Software

We've previously shared the Case Study of Millfields Primary School whose school-issued laptops were stolen three times, disrupting the classrooms for weeks at a time. With Absolute Computrace installed, the next time the laptops were stolen from a secure laptop trolley, we were able to track and recover the devices within 2 weeks.

Absolute Manage allows organizations to persistently manage and secure their endpoints from a single console, making it easy to determine the status of each device, conduct maintenance, maximize licenses and manage a wide variety of device types easily.

When it comes to the protection of iPads, Computrace Mobile Theft Management (MTM) has you covered. Computrace Mobile Theft Management specializes in both loss prevention and theft investigation for the iPad and iPad mini, including device registration, identity tags, theft awareness materials and device discovery services.

With both Computrace and Computrace MTM, the Absolute Investigations & Recovery Team works to rapidly investigate the theft in collaboration with local police.

Absolute Software also partnered with Follet to provide a complete asset management solution for K-12 districts with Destiny Asset Manager IT powered by Absolute. The new asset management solution allows K-12 districts to efficiently track, manage and secure all their valuable computers and mobile devices, and effectively support critical 1-to-1 student computer initiatives.