OLR Report 2014-R-0274 describes (1) the practice of data collection and analysis known as "data mining," as used by education technology companies; (2) debated issues surrounding the practice; and (3) state actions to strengthen student privacy protections.
Education technology companies that provide services to school administrators, teachers, and student users have the ability to mine student data. These companies that create electronic devices, programs, or apps could use the technologies to identify the characteristics and habits of individual users (i.e., metadata) for various purposes without the users' knowledge or permission.
Although various federal laws contain provisions protecting students' personally identifiable information collected in schools and online, they have not been updated to incorporated change in education technology such as data mining of metadata.
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