We are delighted to announce that we are once again running our poster competition to highlight Safer Internet Day. The theme for this year’s event is “Together for a better Internet” and so we’re inviting pupils across the South East to put their heads together to come up with posters which raise awareness of the importance of Internet safety – and possibly win a shiny new Chromebook or digital camera for the school.
The poster competition is open to pupils from ages 4 – 11 and the deadline for entries is 28th February. The entries can be drawn, painted, collaged or even designed on a computer. The judges will be looking for creative and interesting designs which effectively deliver the key messages of Safer Internet Day.
In previous years, we’ve had dozens of entries from schools right across the South East and we’re looking forward to looking at all the posters again this year. If you need a bit of a nudge to get you started, the UK Safer Internet Centre has a fantastic page of resources about Safer Internet Day including education packs, tips for parents and carers as well as children and the opportunity to register as a supporter and put your school on the map.
Entries should be sent via the school. Please send your creations to firstname.lastname@example.org, give to a JSPC Technician or post to JSPC Computer Services, Units 1-3 Seadown Parade, Bowness Avenue, Sompting, West Sussex, BN15 9TP by 28th February 2019.
Prizes for Schools
1st Prize – Chromebook
2nd Prize – Digital Camera
3rd Prize – Digital Camera
PLUS, all winning entries and a selection of our favourites will be shared far and wide online and via social media to spread the word about staying safe on the internet.
Terms and Conditions
1) There are 3 prizes available for the JSPC Internet Safety Day Poster Competition. All of these prizes will be presented to the school attended by the winning pupil.
a) First Prize is a Chromebook
b) Second Prize is a digital camera
c) Third Prize is a digital camera
2) The competition is open to any school in Sussex, Surrey and Hampshire for pupils aged between 4 and 11 years. Schools are not required to be JSPC customers.
3) Only one entry per pupil is permitted.
4) Entries will appear on the JSPC website and the JSPC Facebook Page and Twitter. The school will be listed but names of pupils will be withheld – unless the child would like to be named.
5) The school and pupil agree that their poster will be reproduced to be distributed in JSPC’s monthly e-newsletter and that the name of the school will be listed.
6) All prizes will be presented by a member of JSPC Computer Services on a date to be confirmed.
7) Prizes are non transferrable, non refundable and cannot be exchanged.
8) Entries must be submitted by 5pm on 28th February 2019.
A great start to the year – we are featured in the latest issue of Nursery Management Today with an article about establishing some new healthy IT habits for 2019.
Christmas can be a vulnerable time for security threats so make sure you and your IT systems are prepared
Christmas is a wonderful time of year, but in amongst all the parties and mince pies, it’s worth taking a moment to double check your IT security is up to date, because it can also be a bumper time for cyber criminals. We take a look at some of the reasons why individuals and organisations may be more vulnerable at Christmas.
Tracking spending patterns
Our spending patterns vary in December and make it harder for AI computer programmes to spot potentially fraudulent transactions. It is estimated that the UK spent £8.2bn over the Black Friday / Cyber Monday weekend and that’s just a fraction of the Christmas shopping we’re all doing right now. The banks expect a spike in spending at this time of year, which makes it easier to slip through a fraudulent transaction in amongst all those online orders and trips to the shops. Make sure you’re checking your statements regularly – not only will it help you spot any potential fraud, it also has the added benefit of keeping you within your budget.
Card Not Present provides opportunity for fraudsters
There is a rise in the number of fraudulent CNP, or ‘Card Not Present’ transactions. It is considered a weak link in security protocols because there are many ways for criminals to obtain the card details and there is no need to provide a PIN or demonstrate that you have an accurate signature match. CNP fraud is expected to rise to £680m by 2021 so make sure you keep your card details safe and if you’re running a business that takes card payments over the phone, make sure you’ve got all the right virus protection and programmes for securely processing the payments without storing the data.
People are the greatest threat to cyber security
This time of year, people are very busy. They’re rushing to get their work done, thinking about the Christmas break, perhaps they’re hungover from a Christmas party the night before or just very tired from all the preparation. This means that people may be distracted or tempted to cut corners and that’s when you become more vulnerable to a cyber-attack. Make sure that your firewall and security settings are up to date but remember that people’s actions are just as important as the technology you have installed. Be aware of what you’re doing while you’re online at home, and if you manage a team, make sure they remember that especially at this time of year, all the right procedures can protect the business and your customers from data breaches and card fraud.
More and more schools are embracing Clevertouch screens as part of the digital classroom, and tablets are becoming an important learning tool as well as a popular home and business device. There are a lot of uses for touch screen technology, and whether you’re using it for a class of school children or not, the screen will get dirty over time. It’s important to clean the screen to make sure you’re getting the most from the investment – and can see the screen clearly!
Do you need any special equipment?
You don’t need a lot of specialist equipment to keep your screens clean. We would recommend using gloves when cleaning the screens – this is partly to protect your skin from the cleaning fluid but also because it stops you accidentally adding more marks while you’re trying to clean them away. You need to avoid acidic or corrosive cleaners as these are likely to damage the screen. Water is also a no-no; if this gets into the workings of the screen or tablet it can cause a lot of damage. Clevertouch recommend model 50 of the sprayway detergent for their screens but if you don’t have this, the best approach is to use an isopropyl cleaner which is designed for this purpose. The only other equipment you’ll need is two glass cleaning cloths, which are anti-dust, lint-free or made of microfiber.
How do I go about cleaning the Clevertouch?
These rules apply to cleaning a lot of technology, but many people forget to take some of these points into account and learn the hard way that a simple mistake or skipping a few steps to save time can cost you a lot more in the long run. That’s why we’ve put together a list of “do’s and don’ts” for cleaning a Clevertouch or any other touchscreen device.
– Don’t just put the screen in sleep mode
– Do turn the screen off and unplug the cable
– Do put on your gloves before starting
– Don’t spray directly onto the screen as there is a risk of moisture getting in at the bottom of the screen
– Do shake the cleaner and spray on the cloth
– Do wipe side to side in the same direction
– Do wipe the screen with a dry cloth afterwards in the same way to remove any remaining marks
We’re always on hand to help people with their technology, so if you’ve got any questions or want to know more about looking after your personal or business devices or your school’s technology, give us a call and we’ll be happy to help.
We had a full house at our Cyber Security Workshop for schools in Shoreham this week. The popularity of the event reflected the concerns many people have after so many cyber-attacks and data leaks made the headlines last year. Schools are under pressure to make sure their IT is secure and we decided to put on an event with the experts to help everyone understand how to set up and maintain IT security.
Our speaker was Chris White, his experience working for the South East Regional Organised Crime Unit meant that he had extensive knowledge and a clear understanding of the challenges schools are facing. His presentation took in not only IT security for schools, but also some great tips for everyone on how to keep their data secure and avoid falling prey to phishing emails, identity theft and even simple but essential tools such as password management.
The event at Shoreham airport was a great success, we managed to provide some valuable information to schools across the region and we all learned from the experts who work on the front line of this challenging area. Technology changes so rapidly that we all have to keep up to date to make sure we’re staying safe and this free workshop at Shoreham airport was a great way to help our clients and make sure our solutions were in line with the aims of the National Cyber Security Strategy 2016-2021.
Given the popularity of the event and the fact that the security threat is always evolving, we’re looking into running more workshops n partnership with the South East Regional Organised Crime Unit in the future. We’re always happy to hear from people who have suggestions for other events – if there’s something you’re stuck on or you want to discuss with your peers, our events are always informative with plenty of chances to discuss the issues with professionals from other schools to get some perspective and insight into the issue.
After a spate of cyber attacks and data leaks made the headlines last year, the need for greater cyber security became apparent. It can be difficult to address because technology changes so rapidly and the threat is always evolving, leaving many schools unsure where to start. The best defence is to keep as up to date as possible with any potential issues and that’s why we’ve teamed up with the South East Cyber Protect Team to run a free workshop for schools. We’ll be addressing a range of cyber security issues within schools and will provide advice on how to protect your school from cyber-crime.
Cyber security is a complex area and that’s why we’re so delighted to have Chris White running this workshop. Chris works for the South East Regional Organised Crime Unit which covers the Thames Valley, Hampshire, Surrey and Sussex and he is part of a number of regional units which provide cyber security support across the UK. All of his advice and expertise is delivered in line with the National Cyber Security Strategy 2016-2021.
The workshop will cover the key issues that schools and individuals are likely to encounter, including:
- Personal and corporate security
- Identity theft
- Cyber frauds and scams
- Phishing, smishing and Vishing
- Password management
- Social engineering tactics
If you’re worried about your school’s cyber security or want to make sure you’re on top of the latest threats, our free workshop will give you a chance to learn from the experts.
The event takes place on Tuesday 12th June from 10.00 – 12.00 at Shoreham Airport, in the Pashley Suite.
We were delighted to unveil the all new JSPC Showroom last month. We’re in our same location in Sompting, but we’ve completely modernised the space to reflect the cutting-edge technology available from JSPC.
Whilst we can all benefit from researching online, there really is no replacement for getting a hands-on test of any technology you might want to buy. Our friendly and knowledgeable team are on hand to help you consider your options from our new and refurbished PCs and laptops.
If you have a custom-built computer in mind, you’re also welcome to pop in and visit. You can see what is available and talk to a member of the team who will be able to understand any specifications or requirements and translate that into a PC that is designed to suit your needs.
We’re delighted at the new look of the showroom but underneath the fresh coat of paint, it’s still the same dedicated, expert service and high-quality technology products, services and support that you have come to expect from JSPC.
We are delighted to announce that JSPC is now a certified Google for Education Partner. That means we’ve been fully trained to help our schools make the most of the many exciting Google for Education tools. We pride ourselves on providing a personal service and the very best technology available for our school clients and this latest partnership ensures that we have the expertise to continue to help educators harness the value of technology in their teaching.
Making the most of technology
The possibilities for technology within the classroom can be dizzying, but our understanding of the tools available and the varying needs of schools means we can provide advice and consultancy to ensure schools make the most of the technology and embrace the many possibilities. Just like the teaching profession, we take a results-focussed approach to ensure that the tools we provide make a positive impact for teachers and pupils alike.
Maximise your technology budget
We understand that budgets remain under pressure and that’s another reason we are glad to have the training and expertise to support and deliver Google for Education, which offers an affordable solution with numerous free educational tools. The option to manage in the cloud and use shareable devices means that you can make the most of your IT investment and adapt the tools to a range of learning environments from one-on-one work to a whole class and everything in between.
Explore the benefits of Google for Education
There are a lot of benefits to Google for Education tools, but above all is the fact that they work and that’s why we’re keen to support our schools in implementing the technology. It can help with everything from engagement and personalised learning to productivity tools. We see first-hand the passion and dedication that teachers bring to their classrooms and tools such as these which are simple to set up and make an immediate impact let them concentrate on what really matters – teaching.
If you’re interested in finding out how Google for Education could transform your school, drop us a line and we’ll be happy to talk it through.
IT security has been on everyone’s minds this year – if you follow the news you can hardly have missed it. We’ve written articles which have appeared on this blog as well as in education magazines and business publications which highlighted how cyber attacks work and more importantly, how to protect against them. We were keen to share these articles because we think it’s important to keep up to date and take control of your IT security. That’s also why we decided to follow our own advice and get the company certified for Cyber Essentials.
Implement basic protection
Cyber Essentials aims to help organisations implement basic levels of protection against cyber attack. It has become a prerequisite for some companies looking to supply to public sector organisations to be certified, which shows how seriously the government is taking the various threats to IT security. It also shows that organisations – from businesses to schools and public sector providers – need to take the initiative and make sure they are protected.
Five key controls
The Cyber Essentials programme has developed a robust system of self-assessment against five key controls:
- Secure configuration
- User access control
- Malware protection
- Patch management
Take IT security seriously
We have gained the Cyber Essentials certification not only to protect JSPC, but to ensure we have the latest knowledge and best-practice frameworks available to help our clients get informed and protected about IT security threats. The certification is an outward sign to demonstrate how seriously we take security at JSPC. Also, as an accreditation that should be renewed annually, it demonstrates we are committed to staying up to date and on top of the latest security threats.
If you’re interested in getting accredited for Cyber Essentials, you can find out more here: www.cyberstreetwise.com\cyberessentials. If you’re concerned that your skills or your equipment won’t pass the assessment, you’re welcome to give us a call and we can talk through the requirements and any additional training or investment you might need.
Upcoming changes to the data protection rules mean a raft of new obligations for the storing and management of data. The new General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) have a particular focus on data held on children and young people, which means schools are under pressure to ensure they are compliant. There are stringent fines for organisations who don’t meet the new standards; fines will be levied in accordance with the size of the organisation and the severity of the issue. Whilst schools may not be liable for fines in the hundreds of thousands of pounds like large corporate offenders, the nature of the data means that the ICO is likely to prove a tough moderator and could result in a fine and poor publicity for the school.
We’re not trying to scare anyone with this update – the rules are important and significant but from what we know of the schools we work with, very few will have any significant issues. The challenge, however, is that organisations are not only required to comply with the rules but also provide clear evidence that this is the case. At JSPC, we’re experts on technology and can provide support on how to keep your data secure, for example, or solutions for responding to data access or deletion requests, but these rules are as much about processes as technology.
This is why we’ve partnered with a specialist company, GDPR.co.uk to help schools take control and manage their own compliance. The online tool allows you to assess all aspects of current procedure and available technology and will not only highlight where action needs to be taken, but also provide confirmation of where current processes meet the required guidelines. Once you’ve identified any gaps, it’s easier to take action on the key priorities before the rules come into force in May 2018.
The new GDPR is a significant piece of legislation, brought in to reflect the changes to the way data is used and stored due to rapid technological change. We recommend the GDPR.co.uk tool because it will help you ensure compliance but also it will promote best practice across the school. Rather than seeing the new rules as a burden, it can be an opportunity to streamline processes, bolster security and provide processes which not only ensure compliance, but also support better communications with teachers, pupils and parents.
Contact us to find out more about how we can help with your school’s journey from GDPR uncertainty to full compliance.