Several educational institutions employ various strategies to reduce or prevent cheating during tests. Proctorio is one of the most active surveillance software programs. However, many have privacy and safety concerns about how this extension uncovers cheating. Besides its effectiveness, is the Proctorio Chrome extension safe? This article will investigate how Proctorio uncovers cheating during proctored examinations and whether the extension is safe as it performs its function.
About the Proctorio Chrome Extension
Proctorio Chrome Extension is an online testing service program that allows people to apply for and take exams/tests from anywhere in the world. It’s a powerful tool to monitor test takers and detects questionable conduct using web browsers. This program allows people to take tests whenever and wherever they want.
Proctorio, in its essence, takes the role of a real human in the examination room to supervise students during an examination session. Proctorio can also record the students’ webcams, microphones, screens, and any websites they explore during the evaluation.
How Proctorio functions
The Proctorio software helps monitor exam takers and identifies more than 20 different behaviors. It then creates a report for the professor to analyze and make an informed conclusion. Video recording, audio, screen activity, and navigation are some of the actions that this application may detect. The software tools will flag any suspicious behavior for faculty examination. The instructor then must decide the range of qualities by creating a suitable program setting.
The Proctorio software records some important details while it is in use by a participant; these details are as follows;
- The location of your mouse
- IP address
- Video scans of your exam location
- Applications running at the time
- Your screen
- Opened browser tabs and windows
- Eye, mouth, and head movements
- Video from the webcam of your webcam
- Voice and photo recordings
- Any website which you are permitted to visit throughout the examination period.
While using the Proctorio platform for examinations, there are three options for the examinations; these options are as follows;
- First, a recording feature lets you choose how much information Proctorio records throughout the exam.
- Second, during the exam, the lockdown feature helps to boost security.
- Third, when recording, the verification feature guarantees that the students’ hardware seems to be in good working order and that the student’s face is clear.
All through the examination, the whiteboard and the calculator are the only quiz tools available. When students have technical difficulties during the exam, they can reach Proctorio via live chat to get help.
How the Proctorio Chrome Extension Detects Cheating
Proctorio identifies cheating by employing stringent proctoring software which supervises students’ computer activities. It also records the exam setting, assists in identifying pupils, and keeps track of their placements in the examination room. In addition, it records video and audio surrounding the pupil so that the instructors can keep track of their activity.
Proctorio employs a variety of factors to detect any fraudulent behavior on the examinee’s part. First and foremost, the application has a copy of your photo. So, We will flag the behavior as suspicious if anyone else uses your laptop or desktop instead of the one acknowledged by the program.
Even better, during the examination, Proctorio tapes your voice. As a result, if you transfer any exam materials via voice, be aware that it will be recorded, and the instructional team will evaluate the content to ensure its integrity.
The Proctorio Chrome Extension is designed to detect the following;
- Your Screen: Proctorio offers a feature that sees what is happening on your screen. This software, for example, will display all open applications on the monitor. It also shows all of the websites you visited throughout the test time. Proctorio records web traffic and captures screenshots.
- Your Keyboard: Your keyboard can be detected by Proctorio. Proctorio examines all attached devices, including the keyboard and mouse, before you begin your test. It also detects how the participant types answer in session because it monitors the webcam cam.
- Your Location: Proctorio offers a feature that tracks your whereabouts. There is, however, a globe symbol that you can use to retrieve geolocation data. When the examinee is taking the exam remotely, this data comprises the test location of the examinee and internet information.
Is Proctorio Chrome Extension Safe?
With the sensitive details at the tool’s disposal, one can only wonder if it is safe to use the extension. Will your information captured by Proctorio, such as your IP address, video scans of your location, image, and browser history, remain safe and free from a privacy breach?
What Proctorio Does to Protect Your Security and Privacy
On its part, Proctorio has taken several steps to ensure that the security and privacy of the students who use Proctorio are protected. Some of the steps are below –
- They comply with FERPA and GDPR guidelines.
- Their data center transmission is only over TLS 1.2 or 1.3
- Collected data has double encryption, with AES-256, and it is FIPS 140-2 compliant.
- There is also zero-knowledge security with AES-GCM.
- All its data centers have ISO 27001 certification and are SOC 2 attested.
- Access to the recordings and other information collected during the exam is only granted to the instructor(s) and Mines Canvas administrators. Even Proctorio staff do not have access.
- They do not sell or share data with third parties.
What You Can Do to Stay Safe While Using Proctorio
As with all tech tools and platforms, it is important to read this proctoring tool’s Terms and Conditions and Privacy Guidelines. This would help you know the exact information you allow Proctorio access by agreeing to use the extension.
Students with privacy concerns have also found it safe to uninstall the extension after exams. This is effective since the extension only works when a proctored exam in Canvas is in session.
The Proctorio Chrome Extension is a platform built for taking tests and examinations remotely. Yet, its mode of operation has raised many concerns concerning the platform’s safety. As seen in this article, Proctorio has implemented steps to ensure the security of your data and its privacy. Due to the sensitivity of the information collected by the extension, your safety concerns are valid. So, to put your mind at ease, you can uninstall the extension immediately after taking your exams.