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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

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One Step Ahead: Almanac Security Tips - 2014

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!
You can subscribe via Email or RSS.

Table of Contents (view all)

Heartbleed OpenSSL Vulnerability
Security and Privacy Tips for World Travelers
Filing Taxes Online This Year? Take Steps to Protect Your Information!
If your computer runs Windows XP, you must update it now!
Why Should You Report Security Incidents? And How Do You Report One?
Photo and Video Privacy Issues
The Password is Dead, Long Live the Password!
Data Privacy Month: NSA Surveillance Panel at the National Constitution Center
Protecting Your Finances During This Year’s Holiday Shopping Season
Beware of Phishing E-mails in the Wake of Typhoon Haiyan
No E-mail from Penn Will Ask For Your Username/Password or SSN
The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act: Does It Apply to Your Website?
October: National Cyber Security Awareness Month; Free Secure Disposal of Paper and Electronics
What Basic Rules Protect Student Information at Penn? (September 2013)
Protecting Privacy and Security on Penn + Box

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Tuesday, December 6, 2011 - Almanac Vol. 58, No. 14

As the Semester Ends, Know the Basics about Student Records

Have you asked yourself any of the following questions?

  • May I share a student's grades with her parents?
  • May I leave graded exams outside a door for students to pick up?
  • May I post class lists on the web?
  • May I destroy copies of old grade sheets?
  • May I discuss a student's academic performance with his advisor?

If you have, then you have recognized that there are "do's" and "don'ts" involved in the handling of student data. Student records are protected by the federal FERPA law. They may be shared with school officials with "legitimate educational interests" - i.e., where the information would be helpful in the performance of official duties. In many other situations, however, such as posting class lists on the web, student records may not be shared without the student's consent.

Penn's "Policy on Confidentiality of Student Records" can be viewed at In addition, a concise module covering FERPA basics is available through the Knowledge Link learning management system. To view this module, developed by the highly regarded SANS Institute (, contact your Local Support Provider, who will request access on your behalf from Penn's Information Security Office. If you're unsure who your support provider is, visit Once you have access, you can log in at

Questions about student privacy can be addressed to


Information Systems and Computing
University of Pennsylvania
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