Security in #HigherEd: Anticipating the Attack

Cybersecurity in higher education.

GUEST COLUMN | by Linda Ding

CREDIT LaserficheEducational institutions are on high alert. The ransomware attacks on financial institutions, hospitals and government entities that continue to make headlines is spreading to colleges and universities. These organizations are stewards of private data—including medical and financial records, valuable intellectual property and personal information—and cannot easily recover from the shock of sensitive student information being held hostage. Furthermore, institutions of higher education often do not have the advanced and vigilant cybersecurity tools and strategies that are commonplace in other industries.

There is hope for colleges and universities that recognize the immediate threat and develop a cybersecurity strategy.

In a recent Wall Street Journal article, Chris Stangl, a section chief at the FBI’s Cyber Division, described ransomware as “a prevalent increasing threat” and that the problem “is growing.” The pervasive and increasingly sophisticated nature of the attacks mean…

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