The internet has been a great addition to classrooms everywhere. For the first time in history, free knowledge is only a few clicks away! Yet, as with all things, despite the great perks the internet has, it still is accompanied by some serious downsides to consider. Two emerging problems include cybersecurity and data privacy.
“K-12 communities have been slow to adopt the strict kinds of security standards that a retail or banking customer has had for many years,” Maggie Hallbach, vice president of government and education for Verizon, said in an interview with FedScoop. “The unique challenge is that increased attention be paid and increased funding set aside by counties, towns and boards of trustees to support programs to secure this information.”
Experts recommend 7 steps for schools looking to increase their cybersecurity:
- Keep a clean machine
- Create a cybersecurity culture
- Engage third parties to regularly audit and test systems for vulnerabilities
- Back up data consistently
- Understand and follow national cybersecurity standards and practices
- Stay informed and share information on cyberthreats
- Identify the most important data and create a risk-based security plan to protect it
Read the article [CenterDigitalEd] to find out more about how to implement these steps in your school.
Why do hackers like school systems? Jason Glassberg, Huffington Post, explains:
“Because the education sector, particularly at the college and university level, is a virtual buffet of valuable data. They contain a little bit of everything hackers want, and often in large quantities: personal information like Social Security numbers, birth dates and email addresses (2016 example: 63,000 current and former students and employees of the University of Central Florida exposed to identity theft); financial data (2016 example: hack of the University of California at Berkley exposed 80,000 to possible financial fraud); medical records and insurance; cutting-edge research in science, technology and engineering; and more.”
Though your students can’t necessarily help with securing their own data, they can help your school by learning how to be safe online. Check out these webmixes featuring ways students can learn how to be better digital citizens!