In a digital world that's eroding the concept of privacy, proctoring software pushes the boundaries of what's acceptable – even for tech-savvy students. Proctorio is one example; an AI-powered platform that's under fire for allegations of discrimination, privacy breaches, and accessibility issues.
Proctorio is no stranger to privacy concerns and scrutiny for dubious practices. The Verge reports that the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign plans to discontinue using Proctorio after the Summer 2021 term. The move comes after claims that the software and other similar platforms are replete with flaws and place marginalized students at a disadvantage.
Moreover, the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) recently filed a complaint against the platform for suspected privacy breaches due to “unfair and deceptive trade practices.”
With administrators and students sounding off concerns nationwide, universities must re-evaluate their reliance on programs like Proctorio and implement better ways to monitor test-takers.
Dangers of Proctoring Platforms
Online proctoring services exacerbate stress levels because they don't consider student needs and capabilities. Some reports indicate that the software doesn’t work at all and causes more harm than benefit.
The explosive use of these platforms came with the shift to distance learning in 2020. Proctoring software promises reduced cheating rates and a positive experience for professors and test-takers alike. The results, however, leave much to be desired.
Privacy concerns are at the forefront of the complaints since Proctorio allows professors to access browsing data and takes pictures of their surroundings and private homes.
Other concerns include:
- A vague security policy allowing the program to access details about the student's device, location, and home environment
- Proctoring software, no matter how advanced, does not differentiate dark-complexioned faces as accurately as light ones
- Low-income students may not have the funds to purchase hardware like microphones and webcams
- Some students cannot afford high-bandwidth internet, and some had to take tests in public places (like Starbucks)
- Students with disabilities receive higher rates of flagging for “cheating behavior” as opposed to others.
Proctorio is fighting back against the allegations. The company's reps claim that these issues are due to the students' home environment and low lighting.
As for security concerns, Proctorio assures users that their encryption strength prevents the unlawful use of student information. Students, however, remain unconvinced that these measures are enough.
The Validity of Student Concerns
Online proctoring services aren't new, and they are here to stay as long as universities operate remotely. However, they are unlikely to remain successful if more educational institutions like UIUC discontinue their use.
Student concerns are valid because errors and glitches cause lower grades and even exam failure. For some, it can even mean delayed graduation.
Call the Lento Law Firm
With so much that could go wrong using an online proctoring service, students must now worry about mishaps even if they do everything right.
If you are a student facing allegations of cheating after using an online proctoring program, don't wait to call Attorney-Advisor Joseph D. Lento.
Attorney Lento helps you fight erroneous allegations of academic dishonesty and misconduct from glitch-prone software. He has helped thousands of students across the United States and he can do the same for you.
Call the Lento Law Firm today to discuss your next steps at 888-535-3686.