Jamf Blog
December 2, 2021 by Laurie Mona

Improve Cybersecurity in Education with Jamf

Learn why cybersecurity in schools is crucial for student success, and how to strengthen your defenses against the threat of lost learning time and data breaches.

As if adapting to online education wasn’t enough of a challenge for schools this past year, the rapid switch to remote learning also attracted the attention of hackers. As educational institutions are increasingly targeted by cyberattacks, now is the time to protect your users and networks from costly threats that can lead to lost learning time and data breaches.

Our webinar, Why Cyber Security is Crucial for Student Success, reviews the risks of the current environment, helps you assess your school’s security posture, and provides recommendations to manage and protect your hardware, software, networks, services and data.

With a focus on Apple devices, you’ll learn how Jamf empowers student success by helping schools of all sizes with macOS devices to maintain endpoint protection and detect and remediate Mac security threats. Read on for more key points from this training.

Why are hackers targeting schools?

Cyberattacks on schools are on the rise globally, at both K12 and higher education institutions. Schools are seeing phishing emails, malware, data breaches and ransomware.

According to one report, in the U.S. alone, from Feb. 2018 to June 2021 ransomware attacks resulted in 1,387 days of downtime, affecting 3,880 individual schools and college, and impacting 3.04 million students. In the UK, recent incidents have led to the loss of student coursework, school financial records, and even data relating to COVID-19 testing.

Reasons for school vulnerability to cyberattacks include:

  • A lack of security awareness and training – IT staff was often already stretched thin across schools, without the capacity for rapid expansion of responsibilities. For students, it’s a challenge to train them to be security conscious, and an unrealistic expectation for the youngest users.
  • Budget constraints and legacy infrastructure – K12 budgets are more constrained than the private sector, without the means to upgrade devices or systems, much less purchase the latest technology.
  • Shadow IT – In today’s consumer-driven tech world, technology purchases made without the consent or even knowledge of IT, without regard to cyber security is a common problem for all organizations. These devices often lack the security standards required for networks that are actively targeted by cyber criminals.

How do you protect your school from cyberattacks?

In order to protect your school environment from cyberattacks, recommended cybersecurity standards include:

  • Inspecting network traffic to/from the internet
  • Protecting student and staff identities
  • Performing regular maintenance
  • Safeguarding devices by restricting admin access and applying endpoint protection.

In order to meet these standards, schools can sign up for Apple School Manager, and get started with Jamf for Education as the optimized Apple Enterprise Management (AEM) platform for education.

The recent introduction of Jamf Protect also provides a purpose-built Mac endpoint security solution, in addition to the full suite of Jamf for Education solutions – Jamf School, Jamf Teacher, Jamf Student and Jamf Parent.

Raising cybersecurity awareness

Once you’ve identified areas of improvement for your school’s cybersecurity, it’s crucial that you communicate with all of your stakeholders. In order to successfully implement changes – and reduce your security risks – you’ll need buy-in from everyone, from admins to end users.

As discussed in the webinar, localized resources for training tools, communication strategies and good practices are often available online.

Look to Jamf for more resources

If you’re interested in continuing your professional learning journey with Jamf for Education products, we have created an online platform, Jamf Educator. Sign up at educator.jamf.com to further enhance your education and use of Apple devices.

If you’re new to Jamf, be sure to check out our online customer forum, Jamf Nation – our incredible community of over 100,000 Apple-focused IT individuals. Sign up for your free account to get the answers to common questions and learn best practices from users with real-world experience.

Learn more about Why Cybersecurity is Crucial for Student Success by watching the full webinar.

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