Privacy

Security concerns shutter educational database inBloom

April 22, 2014

Unrelenting pressure and criticism from parents, administrators and lawmakers over privacy and security — and the loss of its last customer, New York state—have pushed inBloom, a student data processing organization funded in part by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, to shut its doors, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.

Conceived as a way to aggregate information on students so that educators could create personalized instruction, the database drew fire almost as soon as it opened its doors in 2013 from those worried that data could be mined or even tapped by colleges during the admission process.

Despite assurances that student information was safeguarded, inBloom, which received $100 million in funding from the Gates foundation and Carnegie Corp., was unable to quell the concerned voices. A statement on the inBloom site called the shuttering “a real missed opportunity.”

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