Hospitals, banks, local government buildings, and colleges all have one thing in common. If you guessed “They’re targets of cyber attacks,” then you would be right. However, there is one other public institution that is often overlooked but has seen a rise in ransomware attacks over the past few years. School districts are encountering cyber extortion more often these days, and you should be prepared for the worst.
Security Threats to Schools
School systems are a hotbed of private information ripe for the picking. Most school systems use a centralized management database to house student and faculty information, making this database a target of hackers everywhere. With schools already being on or behind the curve when it comes to operating systems, endpoint protection, and ongoing security solutions, data breaches are bound to happen eventually. All it takes is one careless click on a phishing email or accidentally typing in the wrong website address and someone outside has a door to a goldmine of data. Cyber extortionists have a variety of tools at their disposal, from phishing emails to brute force attacks. How they go about the task differs from person to person, but the end goal is to steal that private information and use it to make money. If this sounds vile and downright criminal, you’d be right. If this sounds preventable, you’d also be correct.
Cybersecurity for Schools
Many school districts have almost no cybersecurity staff. This means they have a baseline or worse security to prevent cyber attacks on schools in the district. With minimal protection comes maximum risk. Like a trapeze artist balancing on a rope without a safety net, your school is inviting disaster if you don’t have any method of preventing cyber crimes.
There are a few ways to keep danger at bay. The first is cybersecurity education. Knowing is half the battle and keeping staff and students aware of the risks and preventative measures needed to keep cyber threats away from their information. Having up-to-date network security and disaster recovery in place mitigates the potential cyber threats to your school, so having a partner that understands the different elements of your security is an ideal solution.
Knowing is half the battle and keeping staff and students aware of the risks and preventative measures needed to keep cyber threats away from their information.
Students and teachers have their own struggles to worry about without cybersecurity on top of it. Affiliated Communications can help. We have multiple service lines to keep your school system safe from potential threats through disaster recovery, cybersecurity services, IT outsourcing options, and more. Become a school system that your community can rely on to keep information safe and secure at all times. If you’re ever in need of IT assistance or cybersecurity help, call Affiliated Communications today.