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View Full Version : Students should use laptops right or lose them (iBooks)


MacBytes
Feb 12, 2006, 03:19 AM
http://www.macbytes.com/images/bytessig.gif (http://www.macbytes.com)

Category: Opinion/Interviews
Link: Students should use laptops right or lose them (iBooks) (http://www.macbytes.com/link.php?sid=20060212041931)
Description:: When the state issues laptop computers to Maine students, it is with the expectation that the Apple iBooks will be used for academic pursuits and other legitimate purposes.

Posted on MacBytes.com (http://www.macbytes.com)
Approved by arn

Deepdale
Feb 12, 2006, 03:32 AM
From the article: ".... students were able to gain access to a teacher's list of students' computer passwords. The students ... then shared their newly acquired knowledge with classmates. ... To their credit, students were honest about what they had done, and even showed schools officials what was accessed and how they were able to see them."

So long as they shared and were honest in the face of being confronted ... good family values at work. :)

winmacguy
Feb 12, 2006, 03:43 AM
In the voice of Forrest Gump "Stoopid is as stoopid does"
Computer security is only as good as those who enforce it regardless of the platform.:rolleyes:

wpholmes@
Feb 12, 2006, 07:09 AM
Wow, this happened months ago, it seems this newspaper just figured it out and made it seem like horrifying breaking news. So they found passwords taped to the back of the machine! Kids do worse every day across the country, it's just the fact that computers were involved that makes people think it's "shocking"

killmoms
Feb 12, 2006, 09:21 AM
The lesson here is: passwords become USELESS when they're WRITTEN DOWN. You'd think after at least 10 years of the general public computing in the Internet age this would be common knowledge. So yeah, what happened here isn't that surprising—the teachers compromised the security of the system by making their passwords accessible to passers-by, and were surprised when precocious and computer-savvy youth took advantage of that. Why is this news? :confused:

Seasought
Feb 12, 2006, 10:32 AM
It is unfortunate that Hodgkins administrators had to take such extreme action because a few students used their laptops to go where they did not belong.

Yes, it is unfortunate that they had to throw away all those post-it notes with passwords written on them (oh and shred them too). </sarcasm> :rolleyes:

macnulty
Feb 12, 2006, 01:21 PM
Wow, this happened months ago, it seems this newspaper just figured it out and made it seem like horrifying breaking news. So they found passwords taped to the back of the machine! Kids do worse every day across the country, it's just the fact that computers were involved that makes people think it's "shocking"

I think that occured in the Kutztown, Pa school district.

sjk
Feb 12, 2006, 01:51 PM
Passwords have no relevance or importance to certain people and they're stubbornly insistent to remaining ignorant.

When I help "novices" troubleshoot computer problems they're often clueless about passwords. They've forgotten them (relying on auto-logins) or have them set to something trivial to guess (e.g. their username) and reuse the same one everywhere (which someone recently told me someone had "recommended" to her as a good idea :eek: ).

Sometimes I'll try explaining the basic issues to them as simply as possible with a lock-and-key analogy but even that gets blank stares of misunderstanding or disinterest. Other times I know I'll eventually lose patience with the futile effort so it's better to avoid saying anything while internally sighing heavily and hiding my eye-rolling from them.

thewhitehart
Feb 12, 2006, 02:10 PM
It's true that some people just don't care about their personal data. The hacker may always find a way around an obstacle, but it helps to at least take some precautions to buy time.

Just thinking about it, I'm blown away by how many passwords I have stored in my head. I rarely use one twice and never write them down.

steve_hill4
Feb 12, 2006, 02:16 PM
At the end of the day, people will always say they use the same password gloabally because they can't remember that many of them. I have a simple rule, if it's something important, (email, banking etc), have a secure password with it. If it can be lost and retrieved through my email at some point anyway, it is of no importance to remember it every time. If I expect not to use it often or it is of low importance, I don't care if I do lose it anyway.

It's when people set easy passwords like "password1" with their online banking, then either someone guesses it or they are phished into giving it out that they then become concerned by the lack of security and look for someone else to blame.

otter-boy
Feb 12, 2006, 05:01 PM
There should be no lists of students' passwords. Teachers/administrators should have another way of accessing the computers other than logging in as the students (such as logging in as the administrator (or another role) remotely through Apple Remote Desktop). Also, admin users (the tech staff) should be able to reset passwords without opening the students' accounts.

My company doesn't have my password and doesn't need it to access my computer. They can reset my password for me and install upgrades or wipe my hard drive without my password.

What good reason do they have to keep the students passwords if they reserve admin accounts for staff?