What is Appropriate Filtering and Monitoring?

UKSIC has revised its guidelines on appropriate monitoring and filtering. Here is everything you need to know.

UKSIC has revised its definitions of what is appropriate filtering and monitoring. These guidelines are offered to support schools in implementing correct filtering and monitoring systems. To help you understand this, we have put together information on the revised guidelines and the changes.

appropriate filtering and monitoring

What is the key difference between Filtering and Monitoring?

Filtering – Effectivity Filtering Systems block students from harmful content, denying access to any harmful content. Coconnect pairs with Smoothwall and Netsweeper to provide schools with industry-leading filtering systems.

Monitoring – Monitoring systems monitor the on-screen activity of students. Reporting what websites Students are on, the content of the website, and what the students are typing online and offline in search bars, word documents, and chat messages. UKSIC has advised on the different monitoring strategies schools should consider.

What is the UKSIC definition of appropriate filtering and monitoring?

The UKSIC definitions state that schools should be satisfied their filtering and monitoring systems manage and blocks the following content:

Illegal content 
Sexual abuse materialUnlawful terrorist content.  
Inappropriate Online Content  
Self-harmPrivacyCopyright theft

What is new?

Two additional features have been added to the Filtering System list by UKSIC that Schools and MATs’ should consider implementing with their Filtering System. These are Contextual Content Filters and Remote Device Filtering.

  • Contextual Content Filters analyse the content on web pages blocking any harmful content from view but allowing access to the site.
  • Remote Device Filtering ensures that students are getting the same quality filtering on their remote devices when working away from the school site.

Two additional features have been added to the Monitoring System list by UKSIC that Schools and MATs should consider implementing with their Filtering System.

  • Remote Device Monitoring, so student remote devices have the same quality monitoring as onsite devices.
  • Harmful Image Detection so that harmful visual content is discovered, monitored, and analysed.

Full list of Features for Appropriate Filtering

Full list of Features for Appropriate Monitoring

Recommended Monitoring Strategies

Physical Monitoring

Physical Monitoring is appropriate for small schools where 1:1 monitoring can take place. It requires physical supervision of student screen activity. Schools might assign additional support to keep an eye on students Monitors.

Internet and Web Access Monitoring

Internet and Web Access Monitoring is the logging of information against student’s website access requests and searches. Schools will regularly monitor to identify and intervene with any concerning issues.

Active/Proactive technology monitoring systems

  • Active Monitoring – Alerts are logged on the system for the schools to review and act upon, removing false positives and identifying genuine risks.
  • Proactive Monitoring – Alerts are managed and categorised by a specialist third-party provider. The school safeguarding staff is alerted to high-risk and urgent matters allowing schools to intervene quickly when a student could be in danger of harm. Coconnect partners with Smoothwall and Senso to provide Proactive Monitoring.

Learn more about Proactive Monitoring 

In response to these recent changes to the UKSICS definitions, many Schools and Multi Academy Trusts are learning about proactive monitoring for the first time. Smoothwall are running FREE DEDICATED TRAINING SESSIONS which will provide you with everything you need to know about proactive monitoring.

Practical things you will learn:

  • What it is and how it works
  • How it impacts on pupil safety
  • What is the impact on IT and DSL workloads.
  • How much you should expect to pay.
  • How to try before you decide
  • Plus, answers to all your questions

Smoothwall invites your Head, Safeguarding and IT teams to attend a free training session at a date and time that suits you. These sessions will last 60 minutes with plenty of opportunity to ask any questions you may have. To register your interest, click the link https://bit.ly/2V5Pq0z

Need to find out more?

Here at Coconnect we work with our school internet filtering and monitoring partners to offer the most up to date systems to ensure they meet any guidelines published. Please get in touch if you have any more questions or need to optimise your systems, we are happy to talk and offer any honest advice.

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