Did you know that over 83% of educational settings have suffered a cyber-attack?*
What are you doing to protect your school/setting?
With cyber-attacks on educational settings continuing to hit the news, the recent Cyber Security Awareness month shone a much-needed light on the importance of ensuring your school takes all of the necessary steps to protect you from cyber-crime.
So, why is cyber-crime such an issue for schools?
Well, not only is it your responsibility to protect your students’ data under GDPR UK law, you may also face financial implications. Cyber criminals are using new tactics all the time, but most commonly they will hack into your network and hold your data to ransom – demanding thousands of pounds to release it. We’re also seeing instances of phishing on the rise, with criminals targeting school staff with scam emails and websites to lure them into making fraudulent payments. These emails aren’t always easy to spot so a key part of securing your school is your human firewall, and we can help you do just that.
What can I do to protect my school/setting from a cyber-attack?
We’ve collated some of our top tips to help you secure your school below, along with several of our products which will help you do this quickly and economically.
- Strengthen your passwords
Longer Is Stronger - Microsoft and Google require passwords to be 8 or more character long but there is a move towards longer passwords of at least 12 characters. As well as ensuring your password is longer, the strongest passwords are those that include characters, numbers and symbols. So next time you update your password think about replacing a letter with a character or adding a number. It’s simple to do – some of you are already using a memorable three word phrase like “tenlittlepigs”. This could become even stronger by adding in numbers, capitals and symbols such as 10_little_PIGS!
- Update Your Software
All software, including Apps, requires regular maintenance to keep it up-to-date with new functions, safety and security features to ultimately improve performance. So always let your system update when it needs to and install new versions of Apps when they are available. It's hugely important to ensure your devices are also running on the latest operating system - which is currently Windows 10 version 21H1 - see the diagram below to check your device now!
- Don’t forget your website!
SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) is the standard security technology for establishing an encrypted link between a web server and a browser. This link ensures that all data passed between the web server and browsers remain private. Sites with SSL encryption are obvious to the user as the site address will include HTTPS as opposed to HTTP and, depending on browser, will have a green padlock or the word “secure” in the address bar. Your SSL certificate needs to be renewed annually to secure your outward facing web presence.
- Train your team
We're proud to partner with Boxphish, a leading UK supplier of Cyber Security training to help you secure your school's data – their Training Software is designed to improve the online security knowledge of end users and reduce their level of risk – this is achieved via email threat simulation and ongoing, diverse training. The Boxphish training package covers all angles from spotting a cyber-scam while online shopping or browsing social media, to teaching safe internet usage. The dashboard even allows you to track users’ progress or spot any potential security risks within their browsing habits.
NYES Digital offer a range of products to help you put all of these vital barriers in place to assist in the prevention of cyber-crime. From specially developed firewall technology to accessible training for your team, it's never too soon to be thinking about ways to improve your school's security measures.
Get in touch with us for more information on how we can help secure your school:
Tel: 01609 533222