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Clever Adds Identity Management to Digital Learning Platform

The ed-tech software company Clever announced an identity management add-on to its digital learning platform, aiming to boost security and reduce the risk of a breach by automating the maintenance of user accounts.

Identity and Access Management
As education drifts further into the digital space with virtual learning tools and student information systems, identity protection for K-12 students is increasingly vital. With that as a focus, the nationwide digital learning platform Clever has automated the process of creating and updating user accounts on school networks, aiming to save staff time and minimize human error.

Clever Identity Management (IDM), according to a news release, specifically automates provisioning and management of user accounts on Google Workspace and Microsoft Active Directory, a tool used by many school districts to manage access to apps and devices. Clever built the tool as a response to elevated concerns in K-12 school districts regarding security threats, especially given the increase in ed-tech use, the release said. Clever IDM aims to provide a boost in security and alleviate IT teams, which the release said have been stretched thin due to thwarting cyber criminals who have been targeting school districts.

“Over-stretched IT departments have become crafty problem solvers, manually patching up identity management issues with custom, case-by-case solutions, but it’s kind of like chronic back pain: it’s always there, everybody hates it, and it’s difficult to deal with,” said Clever’s Vice President of Sales Trish Sparks in a public statement.

What Clever IDM does is automatically create accounts for students, teachers and staff as they are added to a school district’s student information system. The news release said that roughly two-thirds of U.S. K-12 schools are using Clever’s digital platform, with which IDM integrates. The tool automatically adjusts the access, passwords and organizational units of any given user as they join, leave or change roles within the district, the release said. Building off of the identity management tool Clever introduced in early 2021, according to the release, IDM could save district administrators multiple hours a week. It costs $1 per year for each user and currently works with Google Workspace, with support for Microsoft Active Directory expected by the end of April, the release said.

Clever said in its news release that the tool’s account management syncs each night and undergoes audit reporting to ensure the right people always have access to the platform.

“I don’t think about student log-in credential issues anymore. I don’t think about rostering,” Dylan Jones, instructional technology and data coordinator at Sunflower County Consolidated School District in Mississippi, said in a public statement. “Even if I don’t get it into the SIS in time, when you run Clever IDM, it appends it to the Clever profile, so when the data is passed from Clever into the programs, it’s already there.”