November 30th is National Computer Security Day, a day dedicated to raising awareness about the importance of keeping our computers and devices safe from cyber threats. With the increasing reliance on technology in the education sector, schools have become prime targets for cyber attacks.
In 2021 alone, there were 771 education data breaches, affecting more than 2.5 million records. As we continue to rely on technology for educational resources and remote learning, it is crucial that schools take proactive measures to keep their computers and data secure.
The Importance of Cyber Security in Schools
In recent years, there have been several high-profile cyber attacks on educational institutions. In March 2020, the University of California, San Francisco paid $1.14 million as ransom to hackers who had encrypted their data and threatened to leak sensitive information. In 2019, Baltimore County public schools were forced to close for several days after a cyber attack disrupted their systems.
These incidents not only disrupt learning and daily operations but also put sensitive student and staff information at risk. To avoid these risks, schools must have robust computer security measures in place going forward.
8 Tips to Improve Computer Security
- Enlist the Help of an IT Provider: Many schools don’t have the resources or expertise to handle cyber threats on their own. By partnering with an experienced IT provider, schools can ensure that their computers and networks are regularly monitored, updated, and protected without them having to lift a finger.
- Install Antivirus Software: Antivirus software is a crucial defense against viruses, malware, and other cyber threats. It’s in your best interest to regularly update this software to ensure that it can detect and protect against the latest threats.
- Educate Students and Staff: Schools should provide regular training on cyber security best practices to both students and staff. This can include topics such as creating strong passwords, recognizing suspicious emails, and safely browsing the internet to ensure peace of mind.
- Implement Strict Access Controls: Limiting access to sensitive data and systems to only authorized personnel can greatly reduce the risk of cyber attacks. Schools should have a robust system in place for managing user permissions.
- Regularly Backup Data: In the event of a cyber attack, having recent backups of important data can be a lifesaver. Schools should back up their data regularly, test it, and store it in a secure location.
- Use Firewalls: Firewalls, when installed on your devices, act as a barrier between your school’s network and the internet, blocking unauthorized access and potential threats.
- Enable Multi-Factor Authentication: Multi-factor authentication adds an extra layer of computer security by requiring users to provide more than one form of identification, such as a password and biometric scan.
- Monitor Network Traffic: Regularly monitoring network traffic can help detect any unusual or suspicious activity, allowing schools to take prompt action in case of a cyber attack.
Keep Your Education System Safe With AIS
At AIS, we understand the importance of keeping your school’s computers and data secure. That is why we offer comprehensive IT solutions tailored to the specific needs of educational institutions, including unique service hours, highly customized strategy, and data backup and disaster recovery. We’re here to make sure you have top-notch computer security and IT support at your school.Our team of experienced professionals constantly monitors and updates our clients’ systems to ensure maximum security, leaving you free to focus on providing quality education. With AIS as your trusted IT partner, you can rest assured that your school’s computers and data are in safe hands. Don’t wait for a cyber attack to happen—take proactive steps today to secure your school’s security.