Best Practices for Keeping K-12 Student Data Secure


Schools rely almost entirely on technology to store and manage student data, and it is more important than ever to implement best practices for keeping this data secure. Data breaches and cyberattacks can lead to sensitive student information being compromised, which can have serious consequences for both students and schools. Here are six best practices for keeping K-12 student data secure:

1. Implement Strong Passwords & Use Two Factor Authentication

Implementing strong passwords and two-factor authentication is one of the most effective safeguards. It helps to ensure that only authorized individuals can access student data and makes it much more difficult for hackers to gain access.

2. Update Software Regularly

Regularly update software and systems to ensure that they are protected against the latest security threats. This includes things like installing software updates and patching vulnerabilities.

3. Back Up Data Regularly

If student data are backed up regularly – and often – it can be recovered in the event of a data loss or cyberattack. This will help ensure that student data is not permanently lost, and that schools can quickly recover their operations from a security incident.

4. Implement Strict Data Access Control

School districts should perform strict data access control, where only authorized personnel are allowed to access the data. This can be done by using role-based access control (RBAC) and access control lists (ACL).

5. Conduct Regular Cybersecurity Audits

Conduct regular security audits and assessments to identify potential vulnerabilities in systems and networks. This includes things like penetration testing and vulnerability scanning. By identifying vulnerabilities, schools can take steps to address them before they get exploited by a bad actor.

6. Have an Incident Response Plan

Having an incident response plan in place will allow the school to respond quickly and effectively to a cybersecurity incident, this will help minimize the damage and accelerate the recovery and remediation process.

Keeping student data secure is a critical responsibility for K-12 schools. By implementing best practices such as strong passwords and two-factor authentication, regular software updates, data backup, strict data access control, regular security audits, and incident response plan, schools can better protect student data and minimize the risk of data breaches and cyberattacks. To learn more about cybersecurity best practices, and to evaluate the state of your current cybersecurity posture, contact Securus360 for a comprehensive Vulnerability Assessment Scan.

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