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Are Your Schools Cyber-Safe?

You’ve got the latest filter that blocks proxies and IM and FaceBook. So, is your district cyber-safe? A new study released today from CDW Government (CDW-G) found that when asked to grade their own physical and cyber security, one-third of school districts say that they “need improvement.”  Those same districts also reported increases in physical and cyber security breaches in the last 12 months.

CDW-G’s second annual School Safety Index finds that generally districts nationally are more successful in their approach to physical safety, but IT safety still needs work.

Key findings include:

  • More than half of districts are using network access control (NAC) to protect data and ensure that only authorized users and approved applications access their networks.  However, budget constraints, lack of staff resources and the need for more IT tools cancelled out districts’ efforts to improve cyber safety
  • Nearly half of districts are utilizing mass notification systems, and 70 percent are using security cameras; 29 percent of districts report that security cameras have had a positive impact on district safety
  • Districts should consider the instant access that IP security cameras can give their local police.  While more schools are using security cameras, only a small number of districts give their local police force the ability to access digital footage in real-time during an emergency

The study also finds that, measured on a scale from zero to 100, the national cyber safety average this year was 38.6, down 25 percent since 2007.  How does your district rank? Check out the complete study.

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