The Big Lightspeed Systems 2014 Recap and 2015 Plans

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Things tend to move at such a fast pace, there isn’t often time to pause and look back at progress. That’s what is nice about year ends.

2014 has been a big year for schools.

You bought more devices than ever before, you made progress towards your 1:1s (with more than 30% of districts now saying they’ve substantially implemented a 1:1) and you’re engaging students like never before with digital content and new tools.

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Student Data Privacy: It Matters and What We are Doing About It

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In 2014, student data privacy became a prime concern for global education. You know this and we know this. And we took it seriously. That is why we responded by enacting transparent and comprehensive data privacy policies:

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Our vision for the future: four things I know

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Last week I was at the Center for Digital Education’s DELC conference. DELC stands for Digital Education Leadership Conversation — and conversation is the key word there. The presentations, discussions, and collaborations at the event were inspiring. They were also affirming, as our vision for our Mobile Learning Essentials solution seems right on track for what districts need and where education is heading.

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Update on Google Encrypted Search

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Back when Google moved to encrypted search by default in 2011, it created issues for schools who wanted to restrict and report on Google searches so we worked with them to create an option to be able to redirect Google search traffic to servers that do not allow encrypted searching. By redirecting to, schools could filter and monitor like usual. Many schools have been using this solution.

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What is NPS and why should you care?

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What would you tell your friends?

More than 5,000 districts use our products so we know you like us. But what we want to know is: do you really, really like us? Not just Would you use our solutions? but Would you recommend our solutions to your friends? So to figure this out, we track something called a Net Promoter Score.

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New! Protecting Privacy: Lightspeed Systems Overview

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Everyone in education is talking about student data privacy these days. As CoSN says in their Privacy Toolkit, “It is critical that leaders in education, industry and policy find ways to ensure student privacy, while continuing to encourage innovative uses of technology and student data.” They advise schools to develop data privacy policies and to ensure that any vendors providing services to them adhere to those policies and meet federal regulations for protecting student data privacy.

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Happy Back to School from Lightspeed Systems!

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Summer has flown by, and it’s back-to-school time already! Here are a few things that have been happening around Lightspeed that you won’t want to miss:

Our new training portal

training courses

If you haven’t checked it out, go take a look. We have courses, lessons, videos, and interactive labs for our Web Filter, Mobile Manager, My Big Campus, Rocket and Mobile Learning Essentials products. In true back-to-school spirit, you could see how you do on the quizzes and tests. (You’ll need to be logged in to the Community Site to view some of these. Register here if you haven’t already.)

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Why Speed and Duplex Matters

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The most common implementation of a Lightspeed Systems Rocket Web Filter is to place the appliance between the firewall and the core switch with the external interface connected to the firewall and the internal interface connected to the core switch. Because the Rocket operates as a Layer 2 transparent bridge you should think about it as a specialized wire connecting your firewall to your switch.

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Update on Google Encrypted Services

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Note: The original post has been modified to reflect the latest information and status from our conversations with Google.

Disclaimer: this is a long post, but filtering and accessing Google services is a top concern for our customers, so I wanted to explain things clearly and in detail.

Google is actively moving all of its services to being delivered over a fully encrypted (https) connection. Many of these services have been encrypted for some time and we have made it a priority to work with Google to help them move these services to encrypted connections in a way that allows schools the effective web filtering they need. While we work with Google to create these solutions, we have added features to the Web Filter to work around the issue. One example of this is the failsafe feature that is an option in our Web Filter policies.

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