Data Security and Privacy Protections

Given the national interest in protecting the growing amount of student data housed in longitudinal education data systems at all levels, the US Department of Education is seeking to provide resources to assist education agencies in protecting data in longitudinal data systems. Earlier this year the Department engaged a contractor, Highlight Technologies, to produce a report for our Performance Information Management Service on publicly available resources on data security for education data systems. The contractor assembled a group of privacy and security experts to help guide the development of the report. The report will be used as a resource by the Department’s forthcoming Privacy Technical Assistance Center, currently being organized by the National Center for Education Statistics and expected to be in operation by late 2010.

Based on their research and analysis in the preparation of the report, as well as the input they received from their advisory panel, Highlight Technologies developed a list of recommendations on ways that the Department can address emerging challenges in protecting student data in education data systems. In order to hear from all stakeholders, we are making these recommendations available to the public for review and additional suggestions until August 13, 2010. After that date, the Department will publish responses to the recommendations received. You can read the recommendations here, and comment below.