The forms that the topic of the DSGVO and data protection in schools can take were seen at the beginning to the middle of this year at the latest. Corona not only forces employees in companies into their home offices, but also pupils at schools.

Use of MS Teams in schools

Although the topic of data protection and data security has a higher priority in many German companies than in schools, these educational institutions have also been affected by the problem since 2020 at the latest and are now faced with the question of which remote tool they can and may use.

The use of well-known tools such as MS Teams, Zoom, etc. was an obvious choice, as many of the providers offer free transitional tariffs, especially for the school sector, in order to continue providing access to education. At the same time, these solutions currently collide with European data protection regulations, which make it difficult or even impossible to use them without hesitation. (Heise Artikel – (K)ein Platz für Microsoft)

Some schools are even left alone with the decision of which tool they may and should use. ( Artikel – Einsatz von Microsoft 365 ist an Gütersloher Schulen stark umstritten)

Operation of free tools

But especially the consulting, acquisition and operation of free conference tools is usually only possible through a professional service provider, because which school has already hired professional IT staff? Correct. None.

Another aggravating factor is that new providers of free conference software usually do not reach the functional diversity of large providers. In the worst case, a data protection-friendly solution may even require a separate server to be operated. In other words, there is a gulf between usability or functional scope and data protection/security.

But it can also be done differently.

New approaches and innovations

Start-ups in Germany are working on innovative technologies every day to solve many of the problems of our time, using novel approaches like Cryptofyer’s.

Cryptofyer wants to re-establish easy access to tools of large vendors such as MS Teams by anonymizing and encrypting the data generated during use. In the context of a school, this means that the spoken and written contents of a lesson can only be used by the participants of that lesson, i.e. students and teachers. MS Teams can continue to be used as usual and at the same time Cryptofyer ensures that this data is protected in external environments such as the Microsoft Cloud.

The project is currently in the development phase, but already promises encryption of 1-on-1 video chats and group text chats. Full encryption and anonymization in group chats is to follow this year.

If you want to know more, visit Cryptofyer and talk to us 🙂

Your Cryptofyer team

(Photo by August de Richelieu from Pexels)