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School District Blasted for Web cam Use

STUDENT PRIVACY—U.S.

May 4, 2010

A team of lawyers and computer experts have reached the conclusion that a Pennsylvania school district's decision to activate Web cams on student computers was an "overzealous" use of technology "without any apparent regard for privacy considerations," The Philadelphia Inquirer reports. The conclusions followed a 10-week investigation into the Lower Merion School District's use of software to capture nearly 58,000 images, mostly from lost or stolen laptops, in the past two years. However, the reports states, "because employees frequently failed to turn off the tracking system, more than 50,000 of those images were taken after the computers had been recovered and given back to students." Superintendent Christopher McGinley said the district would learn from its mistakes and "must restore confidence...starting immediately."
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