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Education

Fostering Knowledge and Perpetual Learning through Security and Threat Prevention

There are simply too many vulnerable entry points within the school system.  Modern threats can be contained, quarantined, and remediated by a change in the cloud.

Education

The way we deliver education is changing.  If we keep doing the same thing, we will keep getting the same thing.  Many applications and lessons are cloud-based and require the Internet to teach.  The day cannot end because of issues with the Internet.  Stop threats, data extraction, and funding increases because you haven’t adopted the right solution

Description

According to Verizon’s 2016 Data Breach Investigations Report, the education sector ranked sixth overall in the US for the total number of reported “security incidents” last year. This was notably higher than two other industry sectors which have also been plagued with security problems: healthcare (153 percent higher) and retail (160 percent higher). Read more

But student identity theft isn’t the only threat:

  • University systems frequently have their own medical centers and hospitals which also suffer from a high rate of data breaches
  • Key academic services, such as the SAT and ACT, are susceptible to data leaks which can undermine the legitimacy of the college admissions process
  • Colleges and universities are a virtual clearinghouse for innovative research in STEM fields ― all of which is easily targeted by foreign governments (particularly China) to aid their own businesses.
  • Political activist groups which originate from, or operate within, college campuses are also exposed to foreign intelligence service monitoring and hacks
  • K-12 school systems across the country are being targeted with “ransomware,” which forces them to spend money they don’t have ― it also puts their operations at grave risk.
  • The school system domino effect – hackers attack schools to exfiltrate data and compromise learning so that towns and cities need to invest more into cybersecurity from their taxpayers, which in turn disrupts the economy, which then drives up taxes, which then puts hard-working citizens out of a job, which then turns into foreclosure on their house or unable to pay for the rent increase, which forces us to get 2nd and 3rd jobs, which leads to unhappy marriages and relationships, and the list goes on. Sniper Watch says enough is enough. History repeats itself and the buck again must stop here.
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Features And Benefits

Improve end-user experience

Deliver high throughput and reliable coverage: The proposed solution offers advanced technologies such as 802.11ac Wave 2, Read More Maintain stable connections: The proposed solution also uses dedicated radio for security and RF optimization with integrated spectrum analysis. less

Increase capacity and performance

Remedy the bottleneck on your existing backbone: Multigigabit Ethernet can drive speeds beyond 1 Gbps without costly cable upgrades. Read More Eliminate dead spots in hard-to-wire areas: Mesh networking, included in every proposed Access Point, creates a self-healing, resilient network for cable and switch failures. It continues to operate despite failures or configuration changes in the rest of the network. This occurs without requiring manual configuration or optimization. less

Enhance security

Enjoy dedicated wireless intrusion detection and prevention system (WIDS/WIPS) with Air Marshal: This feature is integrated into every proposed AP and centrally managed from the Meraki cloud. Read More Experience built-in support for BYOD: You can easily and securely track and support user-owned devices. Benefit from augmented security: This wireless solution supports L3 and L7 firewalls, a built-in filter for adult content, integrated network access control (NAC) to help ensure Windows clients are running anti-virus software before joining a wireless service set identification (SSID), easy wireless client isolation for secure guest Wi-Fi, and role-based access control for granular permissions less

Simplify network management

Use simple plug-and-play deployment: Each device downloads its configuration through the cloud, facilitating large campus and multisite deployments without requiring onsite IT. Read More See who and what is on your network: The proposed APs provide deep network insight into users, device types, operating systems, applications, and bandwidth consumption, among other things. less

Endpoints Continue To Be The Primary
Point Of Entry For Breaches

70% Of Breaches Start On Endpoint Devices

why

65%

Gaps In Protection

Of Organizations Say Attacks
Evaded Existing Preventative Tools

48%

User Error

Of Attackers Bypass Endpoint
Defenses Because Of User Error

55%

Gaps In Visibility

Of Organizations Are Unable To
Determine Cause Of Breach

100

Days

Industry Average
Time To Detection

Education

Personally identifiable information (including SSNs), payment information and medical records of applicants, students, alumni and faculty are stored and processed by a campus system. That amount of sensitive data is enormous. Taking into account that the average cost of a data record belonging to a university is estimated at $200 (registration required), hacking a university seems lucrative. Besides, intellectual property and cutting-edge research may attract state-sponsored cyberattackers.

Summary

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.

Why are schools so vulnerable?

Schools face a number of basic problems when it comes to cybersecurity. First on the list is budget. This is particularly true for K-12 public school systems. Implementing a robust, modern cybersecurity program for a public school district is expensive (Wichita School Board estimated the cost would be $2 million; Rutgers University spent between $2-3 million in one year) ― both in terms of the initial set up cost, but also the long-term management, maintenance and regular updating that must be done to keep it safe. With school budgets already stretched, finding the money to support cybersecurity improvements isn’t easy. It may require cutting spending in other areas of a school’s budget, raising taxes or special assessment fees or increasing the tuition rate ― none of which are popular choices. School networks are also fairly large and, as mentioned earlier, they have a lot of different types of sensitive data. Overseeing all of the potential weak points in the network and data that can be targeted is no easy task, especially for a standard IT team which hasn’t undergone extensive training in cybersecurity. Accessibility is also a key feature of school networks. The networks and data need to be accessible by students, parents, staff, outside government agencies, third-party vendors and more. This greatly complicates efforts to protect data from hackers. However, at the same time, this type of accessibility is important to the basic functioning of a school.

What is the answer?

School cybersecurity is a challenging issue, but it is possible to greatly reduce the threats they face. Although this won’t be easy, schools have to invest in modern cybersecurity. A good benchmark is to spend no less than 2.5 percent of the annual budget on IT security improvements and modernization, although more is always better. Most importantly, however, schools have to do a better job of protecting sensitive data. Every school system needs to determine what its most sensitive data is, map that data throughout the network(s), and prioritize its security. There are multiple steps needed to protect data, which include encryption, reduced access, back-ups/resiliency, etc. Schools also need to consider the possibility of eliminating sensitive data when possible. This will reduce the burden they face for protecting so much information on multiple platforms. For instance, instead of maintaining unique school system-based logins/passwords, outsource that step to third-party enterprises with greater security resources. While schools will always be a top target for hackers, by prioritizing cybersecurity, investing in updates each year and focusing heavily on data-level protection, schools can reverse the current trend of large data breaches.

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It’s no surprise why threat actors are winning the fight in cybercrime and data exfiltration.

49% of the workforce
is mobile.

82% of corporate laptop
users bypass VPN's.

70% increasee in SaaS
usage in next 2 years.

68% of workloads will be in public
cloud data centers by 2020.

69% of branch offices have
direct-to-internet access

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