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Take an inside look at a hacker in action on how they select their victims. Learn the steps that company can take to reduce the threat.
With autumn in the air, millions of students are marching back to school and – on university campuses especially – millions of computer keyboards are humming back to life.
Listen closely and you can hear the echo of cyber thieves stalking millions of easy, new prey.
Amidst the roiling concern of corporate and financial giants falling victim to fraudsters, less attention is paid to the problem of data breaches within higher educational institutions. Yet according to the independent website DatalossDB.org, this epidemic within the seemingly safe bubble of academia accounts for roughly one out of every four data security breaches, ranking as the number two market experiencing data breaches – right after the financial sector.
Why are universities so vulnerable? According to a 2010 report by Application Security, higher educational institutions typically suffer from a variety of security weaknesses that make them particularly attractive targets for malicious hackers:
The security weaknesses within universities are varied, so the solutions to widespread data breaches aren’t simple. The increased regulations requiring universities – like any other business – to be compliant with steps to mitigate data breaches helps, but compliance doesn’t automatically translate into security. Higher educational institutions must continually bolster their data breach defenses through every means at their disposal, with constant evaluations and updates from security professionals who make it their business to keep cyber thieves at bay. After all, ivory towers may seem sturdy, but malicious keystrokes are the modern-day equivalent of flaming arrows, and these days the best cyber defense is a powerful security offense.