Data a major concern as universities grapple with cyber threats

Data a major concern as universities grapple with cyber threats


Cyber ​​threats have become a major concern in all sectors and education is no exception. Report titled ‘Cyber ​​Threat Targeting the’ global education The ‘Sector’ by Singapore-based digital risk management enterprise CloudSEK points to a 20% increase in cyber threats in the global education sector in the first three months of 2022 compared to the same period in 2021. “The data breach of our inquiry list, it is the details of potential students for admission, is one of the primary concerns at Lovely Professional University (LPU),” said Rajeev Sobti, Senior Dean and Professor – Head of Computer Science Engineering and Admissions, LPU told FE Education Online.

Student and parent details including Aadhaar number, phone number are important data points for universities and colleges. Along with these, financial related information such as salaries of faculty and grants received by the university are certain details which are at high risk from cyber attacks. The report further revealed that 73 per cent of the reported cases involved the leak or sale of databases that contained Personally Identifiable Information (PII), website user records and test results. Sambuddho Chakraborty, Associate Professor, Indraprastha Institute of Information Technology (IIITD), said, “Along with a data breach, another threat is Axis Control misconfiguration in which firewall rules go wrong and additional databases are exposed. ” That the institute has faced multiple data breaches.

According to Harish Kumar Taluja, director of Noida International University’s School of Engineering and Technology, ransomware poses a significant threat to universities and colleges due to the availability of confidential data. Furthermore, cyber threats are not limited to data breaches only. Devendra Narang, Director, Jaipuria Institute of Management, Ghaziabad said, “In recent times various types of cyber attacks like phishing, hacking of social media handles and creating fake social media accounts have increased in the last two years.”

As institutions grapple with these attacks, the industry believes that it is time for academic institutions to prepare and invest in building a robust cyber security system. Additionally students and parents as well as university and college staff should be regularly trained and made aware of cyber attacks and ways to deal with them. Ketan Shah, Associate Dean – Accreditation & Professor and Head – IT Department, Mukesh Patel School of Technology Management and Engineering (MPSTME), “The need of the hour is that universities and educational institutions adopt centralized secure systems to ensure the security of their critical information. are.” Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies (NMIMS) said.

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