Schools, colleges and universities possess huge records comprising critical information about students. They hold the responsibility of protecting confidential information of students which includes, grade sheets, transcripts, financial records etc. Here are some important cyber security suggestions to follow if you are a leader or IT decision maker in the Education sector.
Create awareness about the potential threats
Insider threats in the education sector are very common. And rarely these insiders are disgruntled employees, instead these include students who are digitally savvy and are generally more advanced than the teachers or staff. Easy remote access, social media, emails etc. increase the risks to the operating environment of your educational institute. Educate your staff and students about how they can spot a potential vulnerability and why they should refrain from putting their institute’s security at risk.
Monitor user access
Educational institutes must secure their data while encouraging academic openness and access to wide educational media for students. This scenario creates a challenging security environment for the IT staff. An effective way of preventing a potential damage is to monitor user privileges i.e. who has access to the network, and what they can do with it. Staff and students should have limited access to the school’s network based on their requirements. Guest faculty and visitors should be given temporary access, allowing conduct of limited activities on the network. This reduces the chances of malicious or accidental misuse of the network. Care should also be taken to delete users when they leave the school.
Secure your IT network
Unsecured networks of colleges and universities can be a great pull for attackers to use the network for launching attacks on other organizations as well as stealing information from the student or staff records. Universities are at a greater risk of infecting their network and systems with malware, virus etc. because of its largely open IT policies. No timely update of software, continuous back up and restoration of data result in lower security levels thereby reducing the university’s defenses to a cyber attack.
Seqrite’s award winning security solutions are the preferred choice of educational institutes to detect and manage cyber attacks before they can cause damage to the institute’s network security. Educational institutes are increasingly becoming the favorite target for hackers and this is why it is important they adopt a robust cyber security solution to protect the confidential information of their institute.
Even if you start with conducting a security and vulnerability assessment, educational institutions need to accept that a security breach is possible and that it can leave devastating consequences. These consequences are not limited to just loss of data or reputation damage but also as a hindrance to future funding and continuing normal operations as an educational institute.