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New security software makes iPad-using students safer online

Called Netintelligence, the app is designed to give education officials the ability to block harmful content and control which websites pupils are able to access on iPads issued by their school.

The Netintelligence suite, Infosecurity notes, has been in active use in a wide number of schools and colleges for some years.

Bill Strain, the firm's director, said that for some years, Westcoastcloud's child safety software has been used to protect youngsters from harmful and inappropriate content when using laptops and desktop PCs in schools.

"With a growing number of schools now issuing iPads to their pupils, we realised there was a need for education authorities to be able to filter and block content centrally on these devices as well", he said.

The launch of the new iPad cloud security app comes a week after the government published a review by Reg Bailey, chief executive of the Mothers' Union, on the sexualisation and commercialisation of children.

Entitled `Children 2.0 :Safe, Sociable, Connected!,' this week's summit is being held to discuss ground-breaking new practice and technologies to protect children online and is being addressed by Children and Families Minister Tim Loughton and psychologistbroadcaster Professor Tanya Byron.

Loughton said that new technology has an amazing ability to educate and entertain, but it also has the ability to expose children to danger. Industry and retailers have a part to play in helping to keep children safe online.

"That is why I welcome Reg Bailey's recommendations, to make it easier for parents to block adult material on the internet, in his review into the Commercialisation and Sexualisation of Childhood. This review is a real opportunity for the IT industry to act decisively to develop effective parental controls, so that they are simple enough for the average busy parent to use", he said.

Westcoastcloud's Bill Strain, who is also speaking at this week's conference, said that children's safety online is a critical issue for everyone involved in education and also for us as leaders in this field within the IT industry.

"The growing use of tablets in schools means authorities are once again being challenged by technology to find new ways of preventing pupils gaining access to inappropriate material over the internet", he said.

Strain went on to say that he and his team have worked with a number of local councils and education authorities to help protect children online through their laptops and desktops and we hope that we can now help them manage the new security issues raised by the introduction of iPads.

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