As a school, data protection is a major part of keeping your children and family safe; protecting their information. You have to ensure that you are fully compliant with the Data Protection Act, and that you follow the principles of the act to prevent accidental disclosure.
Are there ways that you can improve your data protection? Can modern technology and the internet help you to control your data more efficiently?
The school collects a lot of data regarding pupils, teachers, and parents along with information concerning health and safety and child protection. A lot of this data is personal information, and some of it will be sensitive. How you collect and store this information is what the Data Protection Act seeks to control. The school is responsible for controlling their own data in a safe and secure manner.
To make sure that all the guidelines are being followed, and to prevent any accidental breach, there has to be a clear system of how data is recorded and used. This is usually completed on a computer with the time, date and person who handled the information.
Although computers are excellent at recording information, they can be vulnerable when it comes to storing the data. You need to ensure that you have all the appropriate security software in place to prevent anyone from outside the facility gaining access to your systems. Make sure to read all the security features your web hoster provides.
Using a cloud-based storage system such as Umbee Hosting can make the whole process of data storage and retrieval much easier and far safer. Information stored in the cloud at remote servers is more secure that localized computers because they have strong firewalls and security software in place.
Another plus is that it can be easily and efficiently restricted so that only authorized personnel can have access to the data. However, they can still access it wherever they are, making processes more flexible and easier to use.
Freedom of Information
Although the Data Protection Act is there to protect personal data, everyone has the right to see their information. Pupils and students can access the information through Subject Access Requests so that they can see what data the school holds about them.
These requests have to be dealt with carefully but efficiently. Having your data in the cloud means you can get access to it from anywhere. This could be vital if the data were needed as a matter of priority. Information regarding medical history or child protection could be retrieved and sent electronically so that there was no delay if there were ever an emergency.
Making sure that the personal information you hold is safe and secure is incredibly important. It is always a good idea to review your processes routinely to make sure that all the guidelines are being followed and you are still compliant.
By following the procedures and ensuring only the right people have access to the information, it will make personal data in schools more secure. Or you could always hire Fedena, the number one school management system, your school data is always secure with us.