The safety of our children is obviously our highest priority. We see this each time school is back in session. We run the drills of preparedness. Each classroom has protocols posted. Emergency exits are mapped. They know the evacuation procedures. They know Lockout and Lockdown procedures. Fire drills keep the children on their toes. In an emergency, we feel our children have the tools they need to escape unharmed.
But what about online security? This is what educators must ask themselves. Has your school taken the steps needed to keep our kids safe online?
According to the Verizon 2017 Data Breach Investigations Report, cyber espionage is the single most common form of attack in the education sector. With that in mind, our cybersecurity checklist is designed to get you on the right track for the new school year.
Many lower education programs deliver iPads or Chromebooks to the students. The devices are great tools to help educate the kids. But if not controlled, the device can be a gateway to not only suspicious sites but also phishing attacks. Having school-provided devices can help you manage where your students visit, locking down access to only approved sites and programs.
Whether you provide devices or not, having a strong firewall guards the perimeter of your network, giving you much greater security. Higher education, in particular, has great firewall demands. At that level, financial data, research and development, and other high-value data are at risk for cyber attacks. Read our blog, “3 Advantages of a Network Firewall for Your School.”
Filtering for content protects students from inappropriate content, but also brings a greater level of security. Content filtering can come in many forms, such as investing in alternate browsers, using real-time network monitoring tools, or requiring VPN access. Read our blog, “5 Tips to Handle Content Filtering in the Classroom.”
Having two-factor authentication and complex password requirements gives your students an essential layer of security that guards their private data. Simple passwords are still some of the easiest ways hackers can get into a system. And it’s an easy fix.
When paired with a well-thought-out program for informing students of modern cybersecurity risks, due diligence with your school’s network security can pay huge dividends.
At Akins IT, we pride ourselves on our expertise in the educational cybersecurity field. Contact us today for an assessment of your school’s cybersecurity.