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Educating your business on the importance of cybersecurity

Do IT and Cybersecurity Go Hand in Hand? Not Always …

Posted by Dee Lillie on Jan 2, 2018 2:03:00 PM

Not Equal.pngBring a room full of school officials together, and what do you hear? If you’re a school board member, superintendent, or administrator, you already know: Information security is top of mind.

That’s the message we heard at the recent Iowa Association of School Boards event in Des Moines in late November.

Officials are aware of cyber threats – and they want to do something about it. They just need a good place to start. Some worry that the “Iowa nice” factor makes schools in the state an easier target, but they’re no more – or less – vulnerable than any other organization or institution.

Whose Responsibility is Cybersecurity?
Many schools with solid IT teams in place may think they’re covered if a breach were to ever occur, but it’s a little-known fact that IT departments and cybersecurity don’t necessarily go hand in hand. With cyber threats moving quickly and changing every day, it can be hard for even the best IT teams to keep up. In fact, Forbes recently called cybersecurity a “fast-growing job with a huge skills gap.”

A recent study conducted by Ponemon and Centrify revealed that less than 50% of IT professionals are confident that they have the ability to prevent, detect, and respond to data breaches. This is completely understandable. It becomes even more difficult for IT departments to take on this responsibility when they also have to focus on technology innovation and collaboration, user-friendly applications and software, and matching students and staff with necessary files and apps. It’s no wonder that cybersecurity can sometimes fall to the bottom of the priority list. There’s only so much time in the day!

Impacting More than Just IT
Cybersecurity has expanded beyond just a “technology issue” – it’s a business and operational issue, too. It impacts every corner of your institution. No one department can be held responsible for cybersecurity, especially when phishing attacks and other social-engineering schemes are doing an excellent job at convincing unsuspecting employees to hand over information.

When a breach occurs in a school setting, it can cause a lot of unexpected consequences for departments far beyond IT:

  • Financial losses (with an average cost of anywhere from $500 to $2,500 per compromised record)
  • Lack of confidence in school faculty and staff
  • Lack of confidence in school technology, network infrastructure, and privacy levels
  • Inconvenience and frustration for parents (and potentially subjecting them to a breach as well, depending on what information was compromised)
  • Frustration for students, who may lose valuable assignments or suffer from inaccurate school records and reports

The Budget Dilemma
Some of our staff members have served as school board presidents in the past; we understand the constraints you’re up against. Budgets are tight in all school districts – and it’s understandable that the funds you have available are earmarked for important educational initiatives.

But the truth is this: There are cybersecurity solutions available to fit the budget of any school. These solutions can protect you and give you peace of mind – and cost less than what you spend every month on gym towels or turning your lights on.

Want to learn more about ProCircular’s cybersecurity offerings for education, created specifically for schools with tight budgets? Send us a note, and we’ll send you more information on how you can reduce your greatest risks with this single, inexpensive solution.

    ProCircular is a Full-Service Information Security Firm

    We are passionate about helping businesses navigate the complex world of information security, and our blog is another great source of inforamtion. We can assist you no matter where you are in your security maturity journey:

    • Breached or hit with ransomware?
    • Don't know where to start? 
    • Looking to confirm your security with a third party?

    Secure your future with ProCircular.

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