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Saturday, February 13, 2016

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One Step Ahead: Almanac Security Tips - 2016

In each issue, Penn's Journal of Record, The Almanac publishes helpful tips and hints for dealing with information security and privacy matters. This page is a collection of all those published thus far.
New! You can now receive new One-Step-Ahead Security and Privacy Tips automatically!
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Table of Contents (view all)

Most recently published...

Begin the "Year of Discovery" By Knowing the Rules for Protecting Student Record Informati
Welcome Back! Here's a Map to Good Information Security
Email Risks: Well Beyond the Encryption Problem
Global Traveler? Enroll in Two-Factor Before You Go
How Are You Celebrating Data Privacy Month?
2014 Security & Privacy Tips "Year in Review"
Traveling Securely
Tips for Handling Electronic Access in Employee Termination
Welcome Back! Time for Your Information Security “Check Up”
What’s Your Password Strategy?
Working Off Campus? Some Tips to Consider
Heartbleed OpenSSL Vulnerability
Security and Privacy Tips for World Travelers
Filing Taxes Online This Year? Take Steps to Protect Your Information!

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Tagged with privacy

Tuesday, September 8, 2015 - Almanac Vol. 62, No. 4

Begin the "Year of Discovery" By Knowing the Rules for Protecting Student Record Information

As you embark on your road to discovery, it's important to know about FERPA, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. FERPA is a federal law that provides certain rights to students and imposes certain obligations on University faculty and staff regarding the privacy of "education records," or student record information.

At Penn, FERPA's requirements are incorporated in our Policy on the Confidentiality of Student Records: The policy states in general that University faculty and staff may not disclose personally identifiable information from a student's records except with the student's written consent.

Some common "do's" and "don'ts"

1. In general, you may not share student records with parents or guardians. There are some exceptions, such as where the student has provided written or electronic consent. Consult the Student Records System (SRS) or Advisor in Touch to determine if a student has consented to sharing his or her information.

2. You may share student records with school officials with "legitimate educational interests"— i.e., where the information would be helpful in the performance of official duties. This important provision allows Penn faculty and staff to access student information they need to perform their jobs.

3. You may not post grades or leave graded exams or papers in a public place. The "Grades" function in Canvas is a secure way to communicate with students directly about their grades.

For more information, visit the FERPA page of Penn's Privacy website ( and check out the FAQs for Faculty & Staff. Questions about student privacy can be addressed to


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