It takes Beefeaters and the Tower of London to protect the British Crown Jewels. So what are test developers with their item banks to do? Royal prerogative just doesn’t cut it, especially in overseas markets.
Testing and assessment professionals have to think twice when taking testing content abroad. Not everyone plays fair and some international markets are notorious for the extent of cheating on high-stakes tests. It’s a big business in many markets and cheaters are ready to spend serious money to get the answers to test questions.
In fact, a compromised item bank is a very expensive proposition. Not only does that content have to be redeveloped, irate clients and test takers can quickly crush hopes for international expansion.
So test developers are going to great lengths (short of halberds) to protect their testing content, particularly overseas.
Content integrity starts with content development. When it is still internal, test developers can control the test development process. Security is under their full control. But translation is often outsourced and security is often lax.
Remember that translation is still a cottage industry. A digital cottage for sure, but most work is still distributed as attachment by email to unsecure computers located around the globe. Security standards vary widely, i.e. in some places and among many firms they don’t exist.
Finding translators to work on-site behind a firewall can be a real challenge, especially when particular subject matter expertise is required. Terminal server and related solutions provide digital security, and security systems allow the ability to monitor translator-side activity to detect such breaches as screenshots, which are basically the only way to steal data from the terminal server. But such implementations are few and far between. In fact, the only one I can recommend is Responsive Translation.
Please give us a call to discuss your international security concerns before they are splashed all over social media: 1-800-872-6752 or +1-212-355-4455.