School system hack highlights need for cybersecurity training in K-12

educationdive | March 18, 2019

School system hack highlights need for cybersecurity training in K-12
Earlier this month, hackers breached the PowerSchool student information system at Orchard Views Schools in Michigan, changing grades and attendance records for some of the district's high school students, EdScoop reports. After administrators became aware of the breach on March 8, Superintendent Jim Nielsen shared the information in a letter to parents, as well as on Facebook and the district’s website on March 13.Parents of the students affected were notified, but the investigation is still ongoing and it remains unclear if the perpetrators were the same students whose grades and attendance records were altered. Though the Michigan security breach may have potentially been committed by students seeking to change their own grades, it demonstrates just how vulnerable school networks and the systems connected to them can be. Hackers aiming to steal the personal information of students or staff may see these networks as easy targets, given that many schools and districts are still catching up on cybersecurity as classrooms increasingly go digital. Among the most vulnerable data: birth dates; addresses; academic progress; behavioral, disciplinary and medical information; web browsing history; students’ geolocations and classroom activities.

Spotlight

All of this work by educators, administrators, and students has been invaluable in building up one of the core pillars of this province: publicly-funded education. A publicly-funded education system is an integral part of any mature society. It lifts communities up, promotes widespread equity, and provides countless opportunities for citizens to succeed throughout their lives.

Spotlight

All of this work by educators, administrators, and students has been invaluable in building up one of the core pillars of this province: publicly-funded education. A publicly-funded education system is an integral part of any mature society. It lifts communities up, promotes widespread equity, and provides countless opportunities for citizens to succeed throughout their lives.

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