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brynac
Community Member

Prevent Downloads to Protect Proprietary Videos

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Our K-12 school is looking for a good way to prevent students and parents from downloading proprietary videos and recordings of online classes. So far, we have been recording them through a variety of means and uploading them straight to Canvas, but it's very easy to download the videos from the content editor and Files area. 

Are there any other services or tips for preventing the videos from being downloaded? 

I realize that, if someone is serious about saving videos, there are ways to get around any security measures we take (screen recordings, using a phone's camera, etc.), but the administration would like to take whatever steps we can take to protect content. 

Thanks for any help you can provide! 

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Rick,

Thanks for the reply! That's very helpful to know! I'll make sure teachers know to add videos that way instead. I didn't realize that videos added that way don't appear in Files or that they go through that useful of a conversion process. 

One issue I did find, though, is that the new rich content editor makes it very easy to download videos. Just right click on the video, and a "save video" option appears. (With the old rich content editor, "save" could do the same thing.) I haven't found a way to disable it. 

Any thoughts on a way around that? (Besides asking families to sign that they won't do it as part of the agreement?)

We have a hybrid private school that includes homeschooling as an option. The concern is that families might have one child attend (and pay) for a course that we offer, then download the content and use it to teach their other children at home later. In the past, less content was published online, but that certainly changed at the end of this school year, and we don't know what the 2020-21 school year will bring yet. 

Anyone who really wants to do it will find a way around it, but if that option isn't quite so easy to find, then it would be a welcome deterrent. : ) 

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rmurchshafer
Community Coach
Community Coach

Bryna,

I'm glad you added that last paragraph about realizing that pretty much anything on the internet can be saved in some manner.  As far a suggestions; you mention being able to download the videos through Files and that is a red flag to me that the videos are being added to Canvas wrong.  While it works to add videos as files that way, when you do so they are treated as regular files and not streaming media.  It usually works but there is a better way.  If you upload using the Canvas Record/Upload Media tool, it re-encodes the media into a format that is going to work on nearly any type of device (Windows, Mac, Mobile, etc), and is optimized to stream better over a variety of network conditions. It doesn't show up in Files to be easily downloaded, it doesn't count against the course quota, and it supports closed captioning (supports, but doesn't create them).  Below are guides for how to do this using both versions of the Rich Content Editor.  Again it's not perfect, but should produce more desirable conditions for students viewing and will make it a little more difficult for the media to get downloaded.  

https://community.canvaslms.com/docs/DOC-25212-how-do-i-upload-a-video-using-the-rich-content-editor... 

How do I upload and embed a media file from my computer in the New Rich Content Editor as an instruc... 

Rick

Rick,

Thanks for the reply! That's very helpful to know! I'll make sure teachers know to add videos that way instead. I didn't realize that videos added that way don't appear in Files or that they go through that useful of a conversion process. 

One issue I did find, though, is that the new rich content editor makes it very easy to download videos. Just right click on the video, and a "save video" option appears. (With the old rich content editor, "save" could do the same thing.) I haven't found a way to disable it. 

Any thoughts on a way around that? (Besides asking families to sign that they won't do it as part of the agreement?)

We have a hybrid private school that includes homeschooling as an option. The concern is that families might have one child attend (and pay) for a course that we offer, then download the content and use it to teach their other children at home later. In the past, less content was published online, but that certainly changed at the end of this school year, and we don't know what the 2020-21 school year will bring yet. 

Anyone who really wants to do it will find a way around it, but if that option isn't quite so easy to find, then it would be a welcome deterrent. : ) 

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I have not used the new RCE much yet but do see what you mean about having a download option on it. I don't have any insight but if it's important to you (which i know it is based on your comment above), I suggest bringing it up with your CSM and maybe creating a feature request about it. 

Rick

Sounds like a good plan to me. Since my CSM suggested asking the community, I'm going to create a feature request. Thanks!