While far from being a perfect product, Securly is doing some really interesting, new things. They are a relatively new company, and they are growing their customer base as well as their product very quickly. There are a number of new features that we have just started using. Here are a few highlights.
Securly monitors a wide-spectrum of student online activity. They scan all web searches and posts to social media (Twitter, Facebook, and Google+) for students that use our network and/or our devices and uses a pretty intelligent algorithm to look for self-harm and bullying/harassment language. If it detects something, it captures that information and “flags” it. Starting in January, I was able to give building principals and guidance staff in our secondary schools (grades 5-12) a login that will let them monitor this type of student activity for their building. These staff can also search browsing history for individual students as well. My hope is that Securly will continue to develop this part of their product and send an alert email to these staff when new content is flagged. That sound likely within the next few months.
Another new feature we’ve rolled out in the last few days is Securly Auditor. Auditor uses the same algorithm for self-harm and bullying/harassment and scans nearly all the tools in our Google Domain — Gmail, Drive, GChat, Hangouts, YouTube comments, etc… Auditor does actually have the alert feature. So, when it finds something, it will send an email. Right now, we send it to an email group and it’s not targeted at a building. It also shows a few false-positives. But, it’s probably better to over-identify than miss this type of content.
Before the end of the school year, we will also be a launching the Securly parent portal. This site will allow parents to see sites, searches, and social media (Twitter, Facebook, and Google+) use for their children. It will also send them a weekly email that highlights, top sites, searches, and educational sites visited.