March Edition
Web and Social Media Monitoring
Learn how to protect your K-12 testing program by monitoring social media and other websites for testing content that has been leaked online.
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Exposure of content on social media is a major threat to the security of K-12 high stakes assessments. Web and media monitoring services can help ensure that sensitive test information is not being communicated through the Internet and social media. Web and media monitoring can detect whether content is disclosed or at risk of disclosure through websites, peer-to-peer servers, social media, and other online channels. Monitors should search for English and/or other language websites and searchable discussion forums for the disclosure of a state’s protected test content and proxy testing solicitations. Reports of findings should be delivered through weekly updates that detail the threats that have been identified and/or monitored. Each update should:

  • Identify and classify each reported Internet risk (high, medium, low, for example)
  • Track changes in risk status
  • Report web traffic statistics for high-level risks
  • Create a cloud-based archive of verified high-level risks

Web and media monitoring services should be provided for a specified period around each test administration window. It is ideal to monitor one week prior to each administration, for each week during the administration, and one week after each administration during every contract year.
What to Expect:
States should consider the relative risk of content disclosure and plan their social media and internet monitoring accordingly.  For example, exposure of EOC content where tests are required for graduation may be a greater threat – with more significant consequences – than a grade 5, lower stakes, science assessment. Vendors should describe their monitoring tools and processes, particularly the level of detail that will be provided to the state, and procedures that will be used to remove any secure content that is detected.
Five Reasons States 
Should Implement 
Social Media Monitoring
  1. 71% of teens use social media, 94% of these using a mobile device
  2. A content breach threatens the validity of test scores.
  3. Exposures on social media spread quickly.
  4. Replacing exposed content is expensive.
  5. Item content may be shared across states, increasing the risk.
The Web Patrol Process