4 Ways to Help Schools Secure Their Remote Learning Environments

The continuation of homeschooling and remote learning has been challenging for parents, educators, students, and school IT administrators. Even before remote learning became the norm, schools were major targets for cyberattacks. According to the K-12 Cybersecurity Resource Center, since 2016, there have been at least 775 publicly disclosed cyber incidents against educational institutions in the U.S. alone. Further, the number of incidents more than doubled between 2018 and 2019, increasing from 122 to 348.

Now that more students and teachers are using both their own and school-issued devices from remote locations, school IT administrators are being swamped with technical issues, which is diverting IT resources away from cybersecurity. Cybercriminals are taking full advantage of the chaos, prompting the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation to issue a formal warning regarding the cyberthreats posed by insufficiently secured remote education platforms.

Here are 4 ways password management and cybersecurity solutions help school IT administrators keep teachers and staff members, students, and parents secure.

1. Establish & enforce good password hygiene

Since Verizon estimates that about 80% of successful data breaches can be traced back to stolen or compromised passwords, ensuring that all staff members, parents, and students are practicing good password hygiene is crucial to securing online education platforms.

2. Enforce role-based access

Role-based access control (RBAC) and least-privilege are critical in all organizations, and arguably even more so in a remote education environment, where staff members, students, and parents all require different levels of access to different systems.

3. Prevent password overload & eliminate password-reset requests

Password overload is a serious issue. According to a survey by Digital Guardian, 70% of consumers have over 10 password-protected online accounts, and 30% have “too many to count.” In remote education environments, password overload problems are compounded in households that include multiple school-age children, on multiple grade levels and possibly attending multiple schools, all using their own systems.

4. Prevent phishing attacks

Cybercriminals are using the remote learning boom to take advantage of tech-challenged parents (and educators) and attempting to get them to enter their login credentials on phony lookalike sites with domain names that are just a tad different; for example, ABCE1ementary-dot-com instead of ABCElementary-dot-com.

Secure your school today

Reach out to mPowered IT today and discover how simple and affordable it is to protect your institution and its staff members, parents, and students against password-related cyber attacks.

Are you interested in learning more on how an MSP could help your organization stay safe? Give us a call at 678-389-6200 or visit mPoweredIT.com.