New paper on privacy and security risk of online educational platforms was accepted as part of the proceedings of The Seventeenth Symposium on Usable Privacy and Security (SOUPS 2021).
Virtual Classrooms and Real Harms: Remote Learning at U.S. Universities
Cohney Shaanan, Ross Teixeira, Anne Kohlbrenner, Arvind Narayanan, Mihir Kshirsagar, Yan Shvartzshnaider, and Madelyn Sanfilippo.
Universities have been forced to rely on remote educational technology to facilitate the rapid shift to online learning. In doing so, they acquire new risks of security vulnerabilities and privacy violations. To help universities navigate this land- scape, we develop a model that describes the actors, incentives, and risks, informed by surveying 49 instructors and 14 admin- istrators at U.S. universities. Next, we develop a methodology for administrators to assess security and privacy risks of these products. We then conduct a privacy and security analysis of 23 popular platforms using a combination of sociological analyses of privacy policies and 129 state laws, alongside a technical assessment of platform software. Based on our find- ings, we develop recommendations for universities to mitigate the risks to their stakeholders.Pre-print version: https://arxiv.org/abs/2012.05867
The paper was featured on the YFile: https://www.yorku.ca/research/category/news/2021/06/the-question-of-privacy-in-virtual-classrooms/