Over on the Microsoft Australia blog, Pip Marlow, Microsoft Australia’s Managing Director, has written about our commitments to privacy of student data online:
Technology has the unique power to influence and transform how we teach and learn.
While the use of cloud services opens up countless opportunities for students, it also opens up a range of potential issues, from government access to data, to vendor access and use of data.
In everything we do in the education sector, we are guided by the principle that student safety and privacy rights must come first. It is for this reason that Microsoft was one of the first companies to commit to the Student Privacy Pledge in the United States.
This commitment serves to ensure that providers of education services or content do not collect or use student data for targeted advertising or the development of marketing profiles of students. Office 365 was the first major cloud productivity service that made commitments not to use student data for advertising purposes or for any purpose other than providing educational services.
We have long believed that students, parents, educators and school leaders should have confidence in knowing that companies will use school children’s data exclusively for appropriate learning purposes. This is fundamental to every engagement that Microsoft has with students in Australia and around the world. Every student deserves a quality education and should have access to all the tools necessary to be prepared for the future.
This topic has been widely discussed globally and within Australia, and there’s plenty of press coverage about the latest Student Privacy Pledge initiated from the White House.
Office 365 Education is one of the most important Microsoft services that is widely used by millions of students here in Australia and internationally. Schools, TAFEs and universities use it for email services, document storage, online collaboration etc. We publish a huge amount of information about our commitments to security, privacy, compliance and transparency on the Office 365 Trust Centre, which is a great starting point to understand how we protect customer data and privacy.