Information Security Trends And Issues In The Moodle E-Learning Platform

Submitted By bodgrl
Words: 693
Pages: 3

Article Reference Schultz, C, (2012). Information Security Trends and Issues in the Moodle E-Learning Platform: An Ethnographic Content Analysis. Journal of Information Systems Education, Vol. 23, No. 4 (Winter 2012): p359.
In 2012 Mr. Christopher Shultz recognized the need for understanding security trends and practices in eLearning information systems, expressly the modular object-oriented dynamic learning environment, which is better know by it acronym moniker ‘Moodle’. It is a free open source web application where educators can create online learning sites; also know as a course management system (CMS), learning management system (LMS), or virtual learning environment (VLE).
In his research Mr. Shultz’s purpose and objective was to categorically identify and understand the security trends and issues with Moodle as captured via a discussion forum for security and privacy within community. Through this approach he identified four user keynote topics of authentication, permissions, attacks and Moodle configuration through the groupthink discussion forum for security and privacy. Which resulted in expanding user knowledge of the fundamental Moodle platform security concerns and issues experienced within the user community of administrators, developers and security professionals, along with teachers and students that benefit from eLearning information system models and platforms.
Although Mr. Shutz specifically notes four key security and privacy areas of interest for the Moodle user community his research seeks to find frequencies of code use across forty-eight (48) areas of interest across four-hundred-eighty-five (485) threads, where a few threads contain overlap content with other threads. Of these forty-eight he does concede of the first “twelve themes represent 90% of all threads on the discussion board … Authentication, Permissions, Attacks, Moodle configuration, User Profile/Privacy/Policy, Security Warnings, General Security Advice, Security Reporting/Logs, Anti-Virus, PHP, Training (Moodle or Security), Update/Upgrade Issues” (Shultz, 2012)
Mr. Shutz also disucsses his findings related by year although his findings for 2011 year were collected on the 18th of November thus resulting in an incomplete year of data. In addition he discusses the ‘life’ of a thread could be short as 88% of the main 485 threads “were inactive within one month” and the program behind the discussion board would arbritraly list the most receint postings first and as time passes older posts, assuming still relivant, were “no longer as easily accessible” (Shultz, 2012).
He also discussed the findings of relies per thread, noting the average thread garnered 3.3 replies, thrity threads had ten or more replies and one of the earliers post in 2008 gained seventy nine replies. Of these post the top five topics were “hacking/hacked, training (Moodle or security), server configuration, passwords and platform permissions” (Shultz, 2012).
Mr. Shultz met his end to “identify, categorize and understand trends and issues in information security in e-learning as reflected in the discussions on a 'Security and Privacy' discussion forum of a major learning management system” (Shultz, 2012). However, it was the curiousity of this