Special section: IT security and education

The intruder reportedly could have obtained information about credit cards and Social Security numbers of the University of Arizona's employees before officials took steps to clean the network and deploy stronger security solutions.

Following that report, the Cherry Hill, N.J. high school network reportedly was compromised — this time by a former student and recent graduate using legit passwords to change grades.

Other stories followed, with a couple of institutions experiencing the exposures of the personally identifiable information of students, faculty and staff, or another seeing its district website illegally accessed to publicize an unauthorized snow day.

No matter how small or large the school district or university, these entities face the same (and some might argue even worse) risks as their government and enterprise counterparts given their often limited budgets and traditionally philosophic stance of openness to promote intellectual interchange.

But, as we learn in this edition's special section on the educational space, many organizations are overcoming the horde of challenges they face. Establishing a far more comprehensive approach to securing critical data than ever before, many information security practitioners in the educational arena also are continuing to enable information sharing and access for their many constituents at the same time — just more safely.

The second of a total of four vertical outlook sections scheduled for 2007, this edition's educational special reveals just what tactics some organizations

are taking to tackle their IT security problems and compliance demands. While the health care arena already was covered earlier in the year, both the financial services and government sectors will be explored in future issues of SC Magazine.

Click here for Schools around the country find the right technology to protect networks
Click here for Wireless IT should focus on secure communications rather than secure networks.
Click here for One high-profile public school district adds a focus on data security.

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