Friday, October 04, 2013

Schools complain iOS 7 upgrade removes protective profiles from student iPads

Don't be an early upgrade of your device's platform, is the advice we give to many. While iOS 7 offered a number of new features and a distinctly different UI, it was a headache for developers, many of whom posted that their apps were incompatible with the upgrade on its release. As noted by AllThingsD on Thursday, it is also a headache for school systems.

A number of schools have upgraded their iPad deployments to iOS 7, only to discover that doing so stripped away the supervision profiles they had installed on the devices.

For example, a memo from the Manitou Springs (Colo.) School District 14 to parents said:
Apple did not realize that installing iOS 7 would remove our (and thousands of organizations across the country) safety protection measure, which now makes the iPad devices unfiltered when accessing the Internet away from school. In the short term, the district will be collecting iPad devices at the end of each day until the safety protection measure is reinstalled.
In other words, the iOS 7 upgrade removed the protections that were put into place to protect / prevent students from stumbling on (or intentionally reaching) inappropriate content outside of school.

In addition, it removed the ability of school administrators to remotely managed the iPads.

The news came shortly after the Los Angeles Unified School District discovered that enterprising student hackers had gotten around the use restrictions on their iPads, by manually deleting the protective profiles.

Apple admitted there was an issue. Spokeswoman Trudy Muller said:
Some business and education users have reported that their supervised devices have reverted to unsupervised when they upgrade to iOS 7. We are aware of this issue, and will have a fix this month.

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