School Transportation Software: How Should I Protect Sensitive Data?
published on June 18, 2015 by Sonia Mastros
While creating safe and efficient school bus routes is the main focus of most school district transportation programs, protecting student, parent and school data should be a major priority. School transportation software offers benefits such as route optimization, but the software also stores sensitive data.One of the ways your school district is able to protect data when using bus routing software is by weighing the benefits and disadvantages of utilizing the single sign-on option. Single sign-on allows school district employees who use route management systems to access every available feature by signing into the program one time with a single password.
While remembering multiple passwords is inconvenient, someone who shouldn’t be permitted to access school transportation software data may find a password and gain total access to the program if a single password is used. In this instance, a significant amount of data becomes compromised.
In order to choose the best option for your school district’s data security, consider the following pros and cons of using the single sign-on option for your bus routing software.
Benefits Of School Transportation Software Single Sign-On
The main reason school district transportation programs choose to use the single sign-on option within their fleet management software is because it is more convenient for employees. Software users are not required to input their password more than once.
Once an employee logs into their desktop or laptop, single sign-on allows them to access every application on their computer. While this is the most pronounced form of single sign-on, rules regarding the level of password protection required for school district computers using single sign-on methods vary by district.
Some school districts are strong advocates of single sign-on because certain individuals employed by the district believe in software accessibility and dislike having to contact administration to change their password.
Disadvantages Of Route Management System Single Sign-On
While accessibility is a benefit of single sign-on, using this method with transportation management software poses significant risks. For example, an employee who leaves the software program open on their computer and leaves their computer unattended is exposing secure data to anyone who walks by.
Bus routing software stores data as sensitive as HIPAA-protected student medical information. In order for this data to remain private, it is advisable to use multiple passwords that require employees to sign in more than once to access different parts of the program.
Single sign-on provides an adequate level of data security when used in moderation. When limited to certain programs that do not store private data, single sign-on allows employees to easily access some parts of their school transportation software while protecting student, parent and school data.
Ensuring the privacy of sensitive data is the responsibility of every school district transportation program that relies on student addresses, custody forms and medical information to provide safe and efficient bussing to schools.
To determine the right level of security for your school district while using fleet management software, it is beneficial to speak with an expert. An industry professional is able to offer guidance on single sign-on and other privacy protection questions.
Ready to learn more about how route optimization software fits within your transportation program’s agenda? Download the free tip sheet to learn how to schedule safer, more efficient routes.