Preparing 4G routers
Find out how 4G wireless routers are secured, how much data users get, how long the contract is and records you should keep.
We recommend that trusts, local authorities and schools provide a printed copy of guidance on How to get started with your 4G wireless router to the young people and families who are receiving them. If they receive technical queries from those they have provided 4G wireless routers to, consult the user guidance for the specific device type they have received to troubleshoot any issues before logging a support query.
For local authorities and trusts
You can check the status of each router and if needed, raise an issue via the Support Portal. Login details will have been provided when you placed your order, but if you’re unable to access the Support Portal, contact us.
For schools and colleges
You can check the status of each router in the Support Portal. If you need to raise an issue, you will need to ask your trust or local authority to do this on your behalf. Contact us if you’re unsure who to contact.
For young people and families
4G wireless router users should contact the trust, local authority or school which gave their device to them if they encounter any issues. It is important that users do not attempt to reset their device to try to resolve issues, as this will result in both the router and SIM to stop working.
After placing your order and receiving your 4G wireless routers, you don’t need to do anything to set them up before sending them to users. You should, however, keep records of the type of routers you receive and who you loan them to.
Keep a note of the name of the user, with the IMEI and SIM number for each device.
This information is essential for technical queries, for deactivating devices if they are lost or stolen, and for responding to Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) requests.
Read information about device ownership and distribution, including examples of loan agreements and suggestions on insurance. Essential information to share with the young people and families you’re helping to get online is available in our How to get started with your 4G wireless router guidance.
All SIM cards will remain active until the end of July 2021.
The SIM card inside each router is activated the day after it is delivered to a trust, local authority or school. You should loan the 4G wireless routers to the children, young people and their parents and carers the following day at the earliest.
Each SIM has a monthly data limit of 20GB which refreshes on the first of each month. Young people and their families can use up to 20GB of data per month before the 4G wireless router will stop connecting to the internet, until a new month begins. It is not possible for us to increase data allowances for individuals who have reached their limit.
20GB of data is equivalent to approximately 5 hours of remote education activities per day.
When distributing devices, you should inform families, young people and care leavers that:
- their router has a monthly data cap
- they should only use the data connection for education and social care services
- they can reduce the amount of data they use by choosing ‘Standard Definition’ (SD) when watching videos online or making video calls
Each router will only work with the SIM card that is provided with it. Attempting to use an alternative SIM in the router or use the SIM card with any other device will not give a data connection and may cause the SIM card to become barred.
The device will connect to the mobile network with the strongest signal available. Regardless of which network it uses, all traffic will pass through a private, secure connection to a filtered service. This filtering system blocks a range of content categories and limits searching to the ‘Safe Search’ supported by popular search engines. This filtering should not prevent legitimate use of the devices. If a child is able to access inappropriate content, you should report this through the Support Portal.
Parents and guardians of the young people making use of these devices should be mindful of advice on supervising internet use by children. You may wish to send the following information to families when distributing 4G wireless routers:
- Support for parents and carers to keep children safe from online harm outlines resources to help keep children safe from different risks online and where to go to receive support and advice
- Support to stay safe online includes information on security and privacy settings