Cyber Security key questions for university and college senior leaders

Cyber breaches in education are hitting the news this week and they don't appear to be slowing down over the year

Here are some top tips to reduce the likelihood of a data breach:

  • When was the last time your staff undertook General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and information security training? Like computers, we need to keep our applications, software and people up to date to increase our resilience

  • Have you positioned all risk associated IT systems under central control and are they being monitored?

  • Do you have additional security software to protect your IT estate including those working and accessing your network from home or from the cloud?

  • How effective is your password policy, have you reviewed yours in the last 12 months and increased the level of password complexity/ protection lately?

  • When was the last time you undertook a Vulnerability Assessment to evaluate and detect the potential holes in your network that could be a route into your network right now without you knowing? Consider running a VA on a regular basis to ensure your network is tested to get assurance and consider an annual penetration test to understand how good your security controls and ability to recover from a breach would be.

  • Have you checked the breadth and depth of your specific cyber crime insurance cover?

  • Have you had an independent audit report undertaken?

  • Is cyber security risk been added to your risk register?

As a senior leader it may be helpful to consider the following questions when assessing your cyber security risks:

  • Do you have a good understanding of cyber security threats and their potential impact?

  • Have you commissioned an honest and detailed independent assessment of your vulnerability to cyber security threats?

  • Have you considered adding cyber security to your risk register?

  • Have all your staff been trained in information security and cyber security?

  • Do you have a disaster recovery and business continuity plan in the event of a major cyber security incident and have you tested it?

  • Do you have cyber security insurance?

If you need assistance in road mapping your cyber security, need an independent review of your IT security or looking to undertake a vulnerability assessment please call the sales team on 01752 724000 or email

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