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Is Your Organization Children’s Internet Protection Act Compliant?

Once upon a time, the school was one of the safest places a child could be. Now the children are using computers in their classrooms, even in kindergarten, that safety has been compromised. The Internet is everywhere, so the potential threats of Internet use are everywhere, too.

Hospitals and other health care facilities aren’t the only organizations that have to comply with special government regulations. Schools, too, have to make sure that they adhere to CIPA.

The Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) is a federal law, enacted by Congress, that’s designed to protect children from offensive content on the Internet while they’re using it in their classrooms or school libraries.

According to a guide on the Federal Communication Commission’s (FCC) website, in order to be compliant with C I PA, schools and libraries must

  • block or filter Internet access to pictures that are obscene, depict child pornography or are harmful to minors (if the computers are used by minors).
  • adopt and enforce policies to monitor the online activities of minors
  • adopt and implement safety policies that address minors accessing inappropriate content on the Internet; the safety and security of minors when they’re using e-mail, chat rooms or other forms of direct messaging online; hacking and other unlawful acts online; the unauthorized disclosure, use, and dissemination of information regarding minors; and restricting minors’ access to content that could be harmful to them.

Schools and libraries that are eligible for E-rate funding from the government have to meet certain requirements in order to maintain their eligibility.

Some schools and libraries don’t have the budget for internal IT teams. So those managed services providers (MSP) that work with schools and libraries must make sure that they stay up to date with CIPA requirements.

The Internet is a wonderful tool to have available in elementary and high school classrooms and libraries. But the same dangers that parental controls protect children from when they’re at home wrecking them when they’re at school, too.

Interested in learning more about CIPA and how our IT consulting firm can help you maintain compliance with CIPA, give us a call today.

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